Category Archives: koi pond

5 Ways to Hire the Right Philadelphia Pond Contractor

Philadelphia Pond Contractor
Philadelphia Pond Contractor

Finding the Right Philadelphia Pond Contractor

What makes someone a reputable Philadelphia Pond Contractor?  We got a call today that broke my heart.  And it wasn’t the first call we have gotten like this.  The customer called and said a certain contractor started building a pond for him this summer, charged all the money and then has disappeared

The contractor has left this customer with a half-finished pond and little money left for the project.  I have heard this quite often about this contractor, who used to own a retail location as well.

Unfortunately, in this situation, there’s a not a lot we can do except rip out the pond and start over.  But the bigger question is, how do you avoid this in the first place?  Here are some 6 ways to hire the right pond contractor:

Step 1:   Check out their contact info

Do they have a website and FB page?  Are they updated?  Check the dateline at the bottom of the web page.  If it is from 2012, that is not a good sign.  How about FB?  Are there recent pictures and posts?  That shows you their level of customer involvement at this time.

Step 2:  Check out online reviews

Google, FB and even Yelp allow customers to say how they really feel.  AquaReale has 23 google reviews—all positive.  This is important—we can’t pay for these and ask for people to say what they did.  It goes a long way toward showing credibility as a company.  How are this Philadelphia Pond Contractor’s reviews?  How many do they have?

Step 3:  A realistic budget

The cost of a pond installed the right way by a professional is not cheap.  Beware of contractors who offer the lowest bids, as they are probably cutting corners and the results will not be the same! It’s fine to do some bid comparisons, but don’t simply choose the lowest bid. The money you save initially could be lost…and then some

Step 4: A Legal Business

Make sure the Philadelphia Pond Contractor you hire has worker’s compensation and business insurance for all their employees.  It is important that anyone you hire to work at your home has these qualifications.

Step 5:  Communication: Getting Along

The most import item for any business relationship is communication.  With communication, we know what you are looking for and you know we can build it. It is important for companies to get back to you in a timely fashion with reasonable information.  In addition, great relationships are built on trust.  When you trust someone and communicate effectively, great things can happen.

 

The number one way to hire the best Philadelphia pond contractor? Hire AquaReale to do the job for you!  Our reviews and reputation speak for themselves.  Contact us to see how we can help you build the pond of your dreams.

Philadelphia Swim Pond Master Build

Philadelphia Swim Pond
Swim Pond

As part of our recent advanced training at Pondomonium,  the pond industry’s largest trade event of the year,  AquaReale had the opportunity to help build a large Spectacular Swim Pond in Illinois.

The customers originally wanted a big pond their kids could play in, but the more they learned about Swim Ponds, the more interested they were.

They also had storm water issues which would be helped by the pond.  Downspouts were included as part of the system, which incorporated an overflow that drained into a drainage system.  This allows to the pond water to fluctuate by as many as 8 inches, allowing there to be an additional 8000-gallon storm water runoff into the pond before it overflows.

The Swim Pond is a 30 x 50 swim pond with a 20 x 20 wetland filter and a steam connecting the wetland filter to the pond, all getting drawn into a 15 x 15 intake skimmer bay.  In addition, the pond takes runoff from four properties, harvesting rainwater which leads to a bubbling rock in the front of the house.

The pond uses wetland filtration to filter a large body of water where people can swim and they can have fish as well as a clean body of water.  Instead of salt or chlorine, they use beneficial bacteria instead of harsh chemicals to keep the water clear

AquaReale recently built a Philadelphia Swim Pond, which was a conversion we did from a pool to a Swim Pond.  Contact us to see how we can help you get the Swim Pond/Recreational Pond of your dreams.

Call 215.880.6811 for more information.

Montgomery County Pond Maintenance

Montgomery County Pond Maintenance
Montgomery County Pond Maintenance

How much Montgomery County Pond Maintenance does your pond actually need? While our ponds are low natural ecosystems and easy to handle, we want to make something very clear.  There is no such thing as “maintenance free”, everything requires some maintenance, including a koi pond or other water feature. Our ecosystem ponds  are not maintenance free– they are low maintenance. And the maintenance that we recommend is actually quite simple when compared to a pool or concrete bottom pond.

Ecosystem Elements

Make sure Montgomery County Pond  has all the elements of an ecosystem pond first; skimmer, biological filter, aquatic plants, rocks & gravel, and fish. These elements work in harmony together, creating the low-maintenance koi pond.

Montgomery County Pond Maintenance: Spring Pond Cleaning

 We highly recommend getting a spring pond cleaning, this gets out any debris that collected at the bottom of the pond over fall and winter, and washes all the gunk off the rocks.

Montgomery County Pond Maintenance:  Fall Pond Cleaning & Winterization

We also highly recommend a fall pond cleaning or winterization of your koi pond or other water feature. This will help prevent problems that could happen if your ran your waterfall over winter. And no, you don’t need to move your koi indoors during winter.

We also recommend as part of your Montgomery County Pond Maintenance program, you get an Ionizer.  These are great for string algae, helping string algae from ever starting.  If the algae is already there, you will need to work to remove it before the IonGen can take over.  You will need an algaecide, but don’t ever put in more than the recommended dosage—it could really hurt your fish.  You can also remove the algae by hand, or contact us to help you out.

Whatever your Montgomery County Pond Maintenance  needs are, AquaReale is sure to be able to take care of your pond.  Contact us today to learn how we can help you.

Montgomery County pond installation

 Montgomery County pond installation
Montgomery County pond installation

Your own Montgomery County pond installation

A Montgomery County pond installation gives you access to relaxation all the time. The sound and sight of water can instantly calm the senses. imagine being able to go home at the end of a long day and sit outside and look, not at just your grass, but at a beautiful Montgomery County pond installation, complete with a stream and maybe even a waterfall.

All the stress from your day melts away as you sit near your pond and listen to the water flow over the rocks and boulders. It sounds just like it does when you are hiking through the woods and hear the flow of water and stumble upon a river. It really is your own personal backyard oasis, one you can escape to when you want, stay for as long as you like, and return to as often as you like.

Why A Montgomery County pond installation?

There are so many reasons to get a Montgomery County pond installation.  Building a pond in your backyard is making a decision to contribute positively to the larger ecosystem. When you have an ecosystem pond in your backyard, you are creating a habitat for animals to live; for shelter, for food, for safety. Most of the animals that may live in the pond will be small, from dragonflies, toads, frogs, turtles, to birds, but animals of all sizes have a role.

What About the Water?

Since we mentioned ecosystem, no ecosystem is complete without water. Initially it takes gallons of water to fill a Montgomery County pond installation, but the pond itself is self-sustaining and requires minimal maintenance. The lawn that was removed, to make way for the pond, actually required more water and maintenance than the new pond.

A nice sustainability feature of owning a pond! Of course, its not all about the ecosystem or how much water you may save, there is much more to look forward to; pond plants and fish are what many people look forward too.

Want your very own Montgomery County pond installation? Contact us to learn more!

Bucks County Pond Renovation

Bucks County Pond Renovation
Bucks County Pond Renovation

Time for a Bucks County Pond Renovation!

Why a Bucks County Pond Renovation? Maybe you built it yourself. Maybe you hired a landscaper to build it. It may have even been there when you bought the house. But it is not the pond of your dreams.

We specialize in Bucks County Pond Renovations and pond installations. We can fix your current pond and make it into the pond you have always envisioned.
Regardless of how it got there you have pond or water feature in your yard and it needs help. There are things you love and possibly a few things you hate about your existing pond.
Our team has handled many Bucks County Pond Renovations over the years. The renovation can be as simple as adding more stones around the pond to redoing the waterfall you’ve never been satisfied with.
We can also expand your pond, creating streams or waterfalls to give the pond a whole new look. From a trickling stream to a bubbling waterfall, we have your Bucks County Pond Renovation covered. We can put large urns and basalt columns in the pond to invigorate the look as well.
AquaReale has also added fountains, streams, waterfalls, large urns and basalt columns to ponds over the years to help create a new look.
Lights are always a great way to brighten and lighten the pond. Lighting adds a new element to your pond and allows for beautiful. Lighting can accent certain areas of your pond, highlighting your stream or waterfall.
We can help you turn your existing pond into the pond you have always dreamed of. A low maintenance water feature brings your yard to life and will have all of your neighbors talking!

Reach out today to see how we can help your Bucks County Pond Renovation dream come true.

Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation

Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation
Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation

AquaReale specializes in Montgomery, County PA Pond Installations.  From small ponds and water features, we have done it all!

What kind of Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation are you looking for?

We begin each process by working with the homeowner, going over what exactly you are looking for with a Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation.

We look at the location of the pond—can you see if from your windows?  Do you want to see the pond from your kitchen?  Your living room?

Then we look at the benefits of ponds you’d like the most—is it fish, relaxation, enjoying wildlife?  We want to make sure your Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation  is everything you want it to be.

Think about your goals before you reach out and write them down.  Is it the sound of running water you are after or do you like the idea of hand-feeding koi every day?

Children and grandchildren play a part in the decision and design as well.  We leave room for children to stand on flat rocks and observe and appreciate the magic of a pond.  Our children love sitting by the pond for homework or observing and catching frogs.

Once we determine locations and goals of the pond, the design begins.   Matt Reale works with each customer on their unique pond design, making certain we are hitting all the areas that are most important to you, our customer.  We talk about depth, maintenance responsibilities and end goals of aesthetics.

After our design is created and approved, our highly-qualified team of pond experts come to build you your own pond paradise.  They are trained professionals who have built, maintained and renovated hundreds of ponds of the years.  We stay to the end—making sure each customer is completely satisfied with their pond.  Our goal is your complete satisfaction with your Montgomery, County PA Pond Installation

Types of backyard pond fish

Backyard pond fish– What are the most popular?

Let’s be honest– one of the best reasons to get a backyard pond is for the fish!  Even if that is not your first thought when building a pond, the backyard pond fish will soon be the family favorite!

Most of the ponds AquaReale work with are well suited for backyard pond fish and a full ecosystem. And remember– fish do better in ponds with proper balance and filtration.

Here are some of the most popular types of backyard pond fish:

backyard pond fish koi
backyard pond fish koi

Koi Fish

The most well known and popular type of backyard pond fish is Koi Fish.  Koi are a domesticated version of common, not so colorful carp. Over time they have become selectively bred to get the awesome colors and patterns they have today.  The Japanese are the masters of developing koi to have the best colors and patterns.  Koi come in all colors and sizes and can grow up to three feet, depending on their living conditions.

Koi really begin to thrive in ponds of around 1000 gallons or more. The more water for them the better.  They are very friendly and they eventually are able to be hand fed.  They develop personalities and you’ll ending up falling in love and even naming them.

 

backyard pond fish-- butterfly koi
backyard pond fish– butterfly koi

Butterfly Koi (A.K.A. Dragon Koi)

Butterfly Koi are known for their unique look and beautiful longer fins. .  They originated in the mid-20th century as a result of an attempt to increase the hardiness of traditional koi. Japanese breeders interbred traditional koi with wild Indonesian longfin river carp.  Their body shape is more slender than regular koi which are more oval.

Backyard pond fish-- Goldfish
Backyard pond fish– Goldfish

Goldfish

The small sized goldfish is very common for backyard ponds and they make great starter fish.  They resemble Koi, but don’t require nearly as much space as Koi do, so they are great for smaller ponds.

Goldfish as they look today were developed in China over 1000 years ago and are known to be very resilient. Comets are plain orange and white goldfish.  Shubunkins are goldfish that usually have black, orange and bluish coloring.

Backyard pond fish -- Calico (Fantail)
Backyard pond fish — Calico (Fantail)

This fish is also a member of the carp family.  The fish have black, orange and red markings against a pearl white background.  This fish is easily recognized by a forked caudal fin (at the tail part), which forms a symmetrical pair that looks like butterfly wings. All of its fins are well proportioned and slightly rounded.

Backyard pond fish-- Golden
Backyard pond fish– Golden Orf

Golden Orf

Golden Orfes are long, slender, bright orange fish.  They range to dark silver in color.   They are fast growing and fast swimming.  They like to swim together in groups which is great for encouraging other fish to join them .  Although not as popular they do very well and add excitement and character to any pond.

What backyard pond fish will YOU get??

The fish you put in your pond is completely up to you!  Have fun.  Enjoy your pond and your fish.  Be sure not to overdo it with too many fish– the right balance is the key to happy pond life. Contact us to see which fish are best for your pond!

 

Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning

 

 Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning
Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning

Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning

So it’s spring time and you are wondering what maintenance is needed for your backyard pond.  Every pond is unique and will look different.  A few questions to start…  How do you want your pond to look?  Some people prefer pristine while others prefer a more rustic, natural look.

Spring is the best time to clean your pond or have your pond professionally cleaned.  A Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning will ensure your entire pond ecosystem is healthy and looking great for the months ahead.

We recommend full pond cleanings, whether we do it or you do it yourself.  A Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning full cleaning would involve storing the fish, draining the pond and power washing the rocks.  During this time, it’s easy to check for loose edges as well as check the pumps and filters for debris and any potential issues.  This is now a good time to cut back dead plant matter as well.

Philadelphia Spring Pond Filter Cleaning

If you greatly prefer the rustic look, you may prefer not to do a full Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning.  if that is the case, we recommend at least cleaning the filters and filter media.  It’s usually possible to clean the filters without draining down the pond.  However, without draining down the pond you won’t be able to do the other important things like cut back plants, check lights, make rock adjustments, etc.

If your pond does not have a filtration system, we highly recommend one.  Contact us to explore the possibility of adding one to your pond.

 

Ready to Enjoy to Pond

No matter what level of Philadelphia Spring Pond Cleaning pond you choose, a little pond maintenance in the springtime goes a long way to enjoying your backyard paradise in the warm months to come.  Contact us to see how AquaReale can get your pond up and running into the pond of your dreams.

Koi Pond Fish: What to feed in spring?

What should I feed my Koi Pond Fish in Spring?

 

Koi Pond Fish
Koi Pond Fish

Koi Pond Fish Diet in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware

Fish often are a big part of your pond and they provide a beautiful connection to nature and animals.  Just like people, Koi Fish  thrive with the right diet. Should you feed them the same Koi Fish food in the fall as you do in the spring?

What to feed your Koi Pond Fish in Spring

So now that you have a pond with fish you may be wondering how often and what do you feed them?  Does it matter what kind of food they eat?  Do you feed them the same food in the spring as in the fall?  Will the goldfish eat the same food as Koi Pond Fish?

If your pond is designed properly and is a well balanced ecosystem you may not need to feed them at all.  Fish in a well designed backyard pond can live off the nutrients in the ecosystem without ever having to be fed by the pond owner.  They can survive and thrive off of nutrients in the pond by eating foods like plankton, floating pond plants, aquatic plant roots, larvae of insects, worms, and even small animals.

But admit it– one of the main reasons you have fish is to interact with them.  It’s amazing to throw Koi Pond Fish food into your pond and watch the fish rush over to gobble the food up.  Since Koi Fish are often larger than goldfish, they eat more as well!

In general. feeding food products should only take place when the pond water ranges between 50° to 85°F.  So if you do decide to go out and purchase fish food here are some helpful tips.  Lately, fish  food manufacturers have come a long way in producing foods that take consideration to seasons and temperature change.  Koi Pond Fish food also come in different sizes to accommodate different sized fish.

Koi Fish
Koi Fish

Feeding in the Spring (cold temperature formula food) 

Each season brings its own nutritional requirements.  Spring is no exception.  Fish are coming out of their seasonal hibernation into 50ºF  water and they cannot metabolize all of the ingredients of the all season formulas.

As it gets warmer (maybe between 50-55ºF) in the spring, the fish will start eating more and they need food they can easily digest. You don’t want to overfeed your fish at this point, since they will fill the pond with waste.  Your Koi Pond  Fish are not yet operating with a full system as they ease into the warmer weather.   This makes it harder for them to digest food, leaving to more pond waste

Good luck with your fish  For more personalized information, contact us any time!

Healthy pond plants

First off, plants are a huge part of the pond ecosystem and need to be there to make sure everything lives harmoniously. Pond plants also enhance the beauty of any water feature. So, when your pond plants aren’t healthy, you know it. One sign that there’s something wrong is yellowing leaves. Here are some of the more common reasons why your pond plants are turning yellow.

Healthy Pond Plants
Healthy Pond Plants

Healthy pond plants love fertilizer!

Be sure to fertilize your pond plants. If your plants are potted (which is what we recommend) poke a hole in the soil and push the fertilizer down inside, then carefully close the soil over the hole. Fertilizer should also be added whenever re-potting your plants is necessary. For floating plants, remove them from the pond and place them in a container that will hold water. Add your favorite water-soluble fertilizer according to the directions. Do not add more than the recommended amount. Too much fertilizer can cause plants to turn yellow too.

Healthy pond plants and Insects

Aphids

Inspect your pond’s plants just like you do your other plants. Pond plants are not immune to insects, especially in the winter if you bring them in the house.

Spider mites love the dry winter environment our homes have. Any insecticide that you can use on houseplants is safe to use on water plants inside the home. Aphids are sometimes problems in the house, but mites are more prevalent.

Aphids are usually the main insects to attack pond plants. Depending on the plant, you may be able to wash them off in the water where they will become yummy treats for your fish. Floating plants like hyacinths, water lettuce and lily pads and their flowers are good candidates for this. When you do water changes or add water to your pond due to evaporation, spray the water on the plants. This will wash the insects off too.

Too Much Sun

Healthy pond plants can burn just like us. A sunburned plant will have a bleached look or brownish cast to the leaves, sometimes they will yellow. When moving pond plants outside, if they have spent the winter inside, do it gradually. Move them first to a shady spot. Set the pot in a larger container that will hold water. Gradually over a 2-week period expose the plants to more sunlight. Do this in the spring when the weather begins to warm so that they also get used to the cooler nighttime temperatures.

 

For more information, reach out to us!