Since the pond has been 'finished' I have made a few small additions and alterations
There has also been a lot of mole activity up the left side in the pic below, and all the way under my hedge. There isn't much I can do except keep firming the soil back down where possible and scatter caster oil based deterrent granules.
The mole has been under the mound but hopefully it won't cause structural problems.
The water hawthorn was the first to flower, suddenly appearing out of the murky depths from plants that looked completely dead when they went in! I had 5 blooms at one point. They are supposed to have a delicate fragrance, but as they are right in the middle of the pond so I really could't say
|My very first flower|
I had to get help identifying these little guys. Turns out they are are lacewing larvae. I had been searching for what was making holes in the water mint and found these instead - the fellas that eat the things that make holes in water mint :o) The black stuff on their backs is a disguise made from shed ladybird larvae skin. Nothing eats ladybird larvae because they taste vile!
By the end of the first two weeks of the splendid heatwave we had this summer, my pond had lost a fair amount of water. You can see how far the water has receded down the beach and the tide mark on the pond edge. With no rain forecast for the foreseeable future and my bog plants about to become dry land plants (and my rainwater barrels completely empty) I had no option but to top up with tap water
Fortunately I had some pond additive to counter the chlorine and other harmful (for ponds) chemicals that come in tap water
Here I have added some non-native pond lettuces, they will help to clean the water and float around like little green islands. After adding the water and the treatment it turned from green to brown. I think the algae had died off at this point but the water was still very murky
The heavy thundery rains came and one morning we got up to find a lovely clear pond. The rain must have been heavy enough overnight to sink all the particles clouding the water. We can now see in...
The willow moss didn't seem to be doing much so I added some water forget-me-nots for some extra flowers.
The water violets (Hottonia) were all gone, I suspect it was unable to withstand the lack of sunlight while the pond was all murky. I have since read that it is unsuitable for brand new ponds, but now as it is clear and I like it very much, I have replaced it.
I have chucked in some extra bunches of hard hornwort to help build up the oxygen levels more and I have some carnivorous bladderwort on the way - it will have plenty to eat!
We can see the water is still a bit soupy but that's because of all the fauna now, not the flora. As well as mosquito larvae and diving beetle larvae, there are vast numbers of timid damselfly nymphs and roiling clumps of water fleas.
Dinner is often late now as I spend quite some time watching the goings-on of these little creatures when I get home from work!
I have also stuck some purple loosestrife, meadowsweet and ragged robin plugs into the lawn at the pond edge with a log I had kicking around, just to add a bit more variety of habitat.
And now that the water level is up and making that area of lawn soggy, the mole has not bothered my pond edge again. Phew!