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What does a pond cleaning include? What do you do?

Deep cleaning for koi ponds, water gardens, pondless waterfalls and fountains - make your water feature look brand new again!


-Fish are safely removed and put aside in a spacious storage tank.

-All debris and pond muck is removed.

-Overgrown plants are trimmed back to size appropriate for the season.

-Filter, pump, fall box, plumbing and skimmer box are maintained as able and deep cleaned.

-Rocks, gravel and liner are deep cleaned and repositioned where needed.

- Fish are returned to the pond with treated water (to prevent death resultant from chlorine burning).

- Pond is refilled and ready to go!

How often should we have our koi pond cleaned?

Annual cleaning usually suffices for the vast majority of koi ponds with the stipulation that the pond is maintained properly for debris, plant overgrowth, microbiology and other normal aspects of pond care.

What size water features are you able to build?

We can build anything from a small patio bowl fountain to large cascading waterfalls. Contact us today to see what options are at your disposal.

How long does water feature construction take?

Assuming ideal weather conditions, construction can be completed within one day for small projects or it can take a matter of two weeks or so for larger builds. In any case, building a koi pond or waterfall won’t be a season-long event.

Why is my koi pond water green looking?

Algae produces the green color as it feeds on the organic nutrients in the water from plant material and fish waste breaking down in the pond, all while it is powered by the sun’s energy. These algae cause the water to take on a green color that most all koi pond owners find distressing. The best remedy (for a koi pond) is simple, yet multidirectional - remove the algae-filled water, remove all nutrient-rich muck and debris, service and maintain the filtration system, ensure proper water flow and aeration, add live plants to absorb extra nutrition in the water and limit feeding of any animal life in the pond. All but one of these tasks can be achieved by contacting an experienced koi pond contractor like Beholder Aquatics.

What types of fish can live in koi ponds or fountains?

While the list of species that can thrive in a koi pond here in Georgia is expansive, there are really only a handful of fish types that are commonly kept in ponds and water gardens. 


First we have Koi fish, colorful carp that can grow to 36” long or more and easily survive Georgia winters. These fish can be shockingly colorful, and are tough to boot, living (on average) 25-35 years. Koi fish do not belong in fountains or smaller water gardens UNLESS they are very small babies, AND they are to be upgraded to larger living spaces as they grow. Do not keep adult or even subadult koi in fountains, and do not overload a small pond with too many koi. Do not do it. Do not be “that guy.”


Second, we have goldfish, and while not all breeds of goldfish are meant to be viewed from the top as they are in ponds, goldfish as a species are more than hardy enough to handle Georgia weather. However, smaller goldfish may be at risk of being eaten by frogs and snakes. This may or may not be a problem depending on where you live and what size goldfish you purchase. Goldfish typically live between 10-15 years. Goldfish may be added to some fountain features depending upon the size of the fountain’s basin, the number of goldfish and the goldfish’s size. Again, err on the side of caution to avoid overstocking your water feature. 


Thirdly, we have small fish like Gambusia mosquito fish or even Japanese Madaka rice fish. While these fish are more than capable of surviving Georgia weather year round, and while they are small and numerous enough to act as effective mosquito larvae control, they are also small enough to fall prey to frogs and snakes. These smaller species have much shorter lifespans than goldfish and koi, but their ability to reproduce readily keeps their numbers booming in your fountain or pond.  These fish are generally self-limiting in that they will reproduce to an amount that their environment can support and then fail to effectively reproduce more numbers than that. Removing and selling or giving away babies can keep your small fish populations in a healthy range.

How much maintenance is required by pond owners each week/month?

Short Answer: ~5 minutes a day.

Long Answer: Pond owners will ideally spend a small amount of time each day enjoying and caring for the pond, especially in the warm months. Scooping leaves and any debris (without spooking the fish) is an excellent practice to keep while giving your fish their daily food, and checking your skimmer basket every 1-7 days is highly encouraged.

For best results, manage the plant life that grows in your pond as well by cutting back fast growers periodically and by avoiding overfeeding your fish to prevent algal blooms. Monthly applications of beneficial bacteria can aid in breaking down unavoidable biomass accumulation.

Do Koi ponds require chemicals to be added?

While koi ponds don’t necessarily require “chemicals” to be added, our part of Georgia has chlorine levels in the tap water high enough to kill fish (easily) if the tap water is not treated with dechlorinator. NOTE that small amounts of tap water added at a time is no threat. However, draining and refilling your pond or water feature with non-well tap water and failing to treat it for chlorine (or waiting 24hrs for the chlorine to dissipate before re-introducing the fish) will kill your fish.

Additionally, certain bacterial cultures, while not necessary to introduce, can be greatly beneficial for your pond’s ecosystem.

How can I tell if my koi pond needs to be cleaned?

-Cosmetically speaking, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Only you can decide when your pond is too overgrown or mucky to hold off on cleaning it. 

-Biologically speaking, if you have fish in your pond or water garden, you owe it to them to ensure that the water parameters are healthy for them and that they have enough room to comfortably move around and live. It is unethical to force large fish to navigate a tangled maze of plants. 

-Mechanically speaking, it is time to have your koi pond cleaned if your filtration system, pump or plumbing are so overloaded with organic material that they are in danger of no longer functioning. This can and does happen, but experienced pond owners will have their ponds maintained well enough that their ponds are not in danger of being damaged by this type of neglect.

What sorts of filtration systems are required?

By this point of the FAQ page, you will likely guess that the answer to this question is, “it depends.” There are many different types of filtration systems for koi ponds, but for many ponds, the best filtration is biological in nature. By that, I mean that the water passes through multiple screens to remove large debris while being passed over filter pads and other media that house water-filtering bacteria. The water then of course passes over rocks, gravel and live plants that house yet more bacteria or consume water contaminants like nitrates respectively. Furthermore, the water is almost always aerated using a pleasant waterfall, preventing water stagnation, bug-larval production and oxygen depletion.

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