clear pond water naturally

How To Keep Pond Water Clear Naturally – 10 Actionable Steps

clear pond water naturallyAdopting natural methods for any work is always better. The same goes for keeping pond water clear.

Natural methods are always safe, cost-effective and long-lasting. I know many pond owners want to know how they can keep their pond naturally clean.

In this article, you will get to know how to keep pond water clear naturally.

So let’s get started.

How To Keep Pond Water Clear Naturally

Use Barley Straw to Get Rid of Algae

You can easily use barley straw for solving the algae problem in your pond. You can buy them at local garden centers or online. Alternatively, you can use barley straw in liquid form or barley straw pellets.

Barley Straw for getting rid of algae naturally
Each of the barley straw can treat 1000 gallons of water. | Click Image To Check Price On Amazon

The basic reason for pond water getting green is algae. So let’s try to get a clear knowledge of how do the algae remain in the pond water?

There are two types of algae. The first kind is known as single-celled algae. These algae normally tend to turn the pond water green. The second one is brown and tends to turn the pond water brown.

Depending on the size of your pond, you need to use multiple of them to stop algae growth

If you have a waterfall in your pond then you can hang the bundles of barley straw in the waterfall.

It is recommended to put the barley straw bundle in the pond near a fountain if your pond has one or in a place where water is continuously flowing.

This straw will start to decompose and the bundle will sink. Therefore it will be no longer visible on the top of the water.

Please keep in mind that solving algae problems with barley straw will take a bit longer than the chemical method. So don’t panic if you are not getting results immediately. It takes a few weeks for the barley straw to decompose and do its trick.

Manually Remove Algae

If you want to get rid of algae real quick, then you can adopt the manual cleaning method.

Sounds hard?

Trust me it’s not that much hard at all. If you have a small pond this is a recommended method for you. For large ponds, it is not that much suitable and economic

Milliard Pond Algae Brush
Milliard 10 Inch Wide Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Wire Algae Brush | Click Image to Check Price On amazon

An inexpensive brush will do your job in this case.

It works great for getting rid of algae in a pond. Just scrub different elements of the pond with the help of a brush.

It is ideal to use a brand new brush for your pond. It looks bad if you are using the same brush for your pond and also for other work.

Try to Know About Your Ponds Ecosystem?

It is essential to know the ecosystem of your pond to keep its water clear naturally. The ecosystem is the summation of breathing fishes, plants, bacteria and other habitats that we can’t see.

If you can discover how all of these elements interact with each other, you can easily get nice and clear water in your pond.

Nature has an ecosystem that keeps the fish and other aquatic living happy in the pond. Try to replicate this system of nature in a man-made environment. This will be helpful for you to improve the clarity of the water.

So just don’t go doing something without knowing anything about it in the first place. This won’t help at all.

Each element of a properly designed pond has an important role in the ecosystem of the pond. This makes the pond comfortable for fish and other habitat and a blissful place to hang out with your family and friends.

For example, fishes eat mosquitos, bacteria produce gas eating fish waste, plants need the gas that the bacteria are creating.

These are some unseen cycle that keeps on happening behind your eyes. Any interruption in this cycle causes a problem in pond water quality. Therefore, you should check the pond water quality regularly to check if anything is going wrong.

So studying these ecological cycles helps you to identify what will and what won’t harm the ecology of your pond.

So take notes of this.

Stop Power Washing Every time!

Having a problem with water. It doesn’t have natural color. Just get it done with power washing?

No! Stop this urge of yours to power wash everything.

You can just try to take some manual measures. There is a huge difference between pulling up a few handfuls of gunk and dragging out a pressure difference.

Power washing the rocks of the pond will eventually remove some of the ecosystem elements that take a considerable amount of time to grow. After getting rid of these you will not be able to get them back quickly by chemical treatment or any other means.

If you destroy any ecological elements by power washing you will not be able to have the water of your desired clarity. The breakdown of the ecology will not let you have it.

Now if it’s necessary, bath the rocks, remove the debris and gunk gently. After that, you should just simply rinse them with water from the pond instead of a hose.

So don’t push the ecology of your pond. Stop power washing the pond elements. This is very essential to maintain the natural balance of the pond and also the clarity of ponds water.

Let the Plants Be Helpful

You may think only adding bacteria will deal with the algae. But it will be the wrong decision.

Let me explain why.

When you are adding bacteria to solve the algae issue they are breaking different elements into nitrates. These nitrates will be food for different types of algae. And in the end, it’s just the same algae problem.

While some amount of string algae is necessary for the benefits of pond water you should keep this in control by adding suitable plants and flowers in your pond.

As different kinds of plants will consume different kinds of nitrates. For example, iris will consume one kind and a lily will do another kind. A plant blooming in May consumes different from that of blooming in September.

For your backyards pond and its waters betterment, you can plant jenny, pickerel, horsetail, taro, cardinal, water lettuce, mosaic, blue iris, sweet flag, water lilies, etc.

These plants will work together to prevent the growth of the algae. So you will not have to worry about killing it afterward.

Also, try to make sure that the plant that you will have doesn’t harm the ecosystem of the pond.

This can help you in keeping your pond water clear naturally. So make sure to follow this.

Stop Over Feeding Your Fish

You should stop overfeeding the fishes in your pond. Because at the endpoint, this extra food will make the water quality bad.

Try to make sure that you are feeding your fishes only once a day. No more than that. Because they only can eat for 2-3 minutes.

Many of you don’t know this and get the wrong ideas. Because of this, you will overfeed your fishes. And finally, the leftovers rot in the pond and results in a downgrade of the quality of the pond water.

Also because of overfeeding, the ecological cycle of the pond is broken and the water also gets naturally and chemically imbalanced.

Now you might wonder what kind of food you want to feed your fishes in the pond that will keep your pond naturally balanced and also not harm the water quality and keep it clear.

You should know that most of the pond fishes are omnivorous. They will take an unexpected array of foods if supplied. For example, koi and goldfish will consume peas, citrus fruits, spinach, wheat germ, plankton, etc. type of foods.

You should also have a clear idea over when to feed the fishes and how much to feed according to the temperature of our pond water, size, and type of fishes, etc.

If the water temperature rises above 90 degrees you should not feed the fishes. In the time of spring and fall when the temperature of the pond goes down to 50-60 degrees reduce feeding.

From this discussion, it is clear that extra food harms the water quality and make it murky.

So you have to make sure to feed the fishes in the pond once a day and not let wastage to remain in the pond.

P7000 Pond Fish Feeder
P7000 Pond Fish Feeder | Click Image To Check Price On Amazon


I always recommend you use an automatic fish feeder for your pond. It serves a proper amount of feed to your fish at a preset time. You can use the P7000 Pond Fish Feeder system for your pond which I consider the best automatic fish feeder for a pond.

Don’t Over Populate the Pond With Fish

The number and size of fishes should be compatible with the size of the pond. This is necessary to keep the pond water clear naturally.

As fish is one of the primary sources for nitrogen for algae growth. The more the fish the more the nutrient for the algae. So, don’t overpopulate the pond.

We know algae affect the pond water quality both directly and indirectly. These algae will discolor the pond water as well as downgrade the quality of it. Furthermore, they will make it hard for the other aquatic life to live in the pond.

If your pond doesn’t have the right proportion of fish this will cause a chemical imbalance in the water. Then the pH of the water will drastically change.

You should be aware of the size of the pond and the amount of fish you are putting into it as you have to maintain the right proportion of the fish.

For example, you can have 10 koi fish in one 1000 gallons of water, not more than that.

Experts suggest half an inch of fish for every 10 gallons of water as the maximum safe density of fish in the pond for keeping everything balanced in the pond.

If the fishes are fanatic then you may find yourself two or even three inches of fish per 10 gallons of water and they will have a proper environment to live in.

This is for the numbers of the fish. Now note what kinds of fishes might support your little backyard pond.

For example, you can have koi, comets, shubunkins these types of fish in your backyards pond.

So having the right proportion of fishes is very much necessary for the pond water. For the right proportion of fish try to stock fish that feed on different levels of the pond. You can also add some algae eating fish to solve the algae problem naturally.

Scare Away Wild And Harmful Animals

Sometimes, wildlife is a threat to clear pond water. If you have a farm pond and livestock and wild animals have access to it, they can make the pond water muddy.

Therefore, there should be a barrier around your pond so that the animals can’t disturb the peaceful environment of your pond.

For birds like herons and wild geese, you can have pond settings over the pond. This will also prevent leaves from falling into the pond and prevent fish from jumping out of the pond.

Choose a Good Location

This one could be difficult if you have already pond on the ground. But if you are reading this before making the pond then this one is certainly for you.

Try to have a proper location with proper aeration for the pond. This is necessary for the clarity of the water.

Don’t place your pond under a deciduous tree. They will cover the pond up with their leaves.

If you are having a lot of leaves falling from the pond try scoping them out of the pond. Do this, before these leaves get a chance to rot in the pond. This will be required mostly in the autumn. Also in the windy seasons.

When deciding the location consider a place that has some direct sun and some shade also. The creatures living in the pond always enjoy the warmth of the sunlight. This is good for the nesting of the frogs and their spawns.

Also, choose a place with proper aeration. Having enough supply of oxygen is a must for the pond. So make sure of this and accurately place the pond so that your pond is aerated naturally by the wind to some degree.

Someone might have an ornamental fish pond. For such ponds, you can keep the water clear mostly by direct sunlight.

Locating the pond in the sunlight also encourages algae growth. But a healthy amount of algae growth is alright for the overall environment of the pond.

The aquatic animals like to feed on this minimal number of algae. They will help to put oxygen into the water and make sure the balance of the nitrogen level.

So do your homework properly and try to locate your pond in a suitable place. This can make a big difference in pond water quality.

Try to Make a Balance Between Plants and Algae

As said earlier you should have aquatic plants in your pond. But shouldn’t have them in abundance. Try to make sure that you are keeping a healthy balance between the pond plants and the algae that you have in your pond.

This is very much necessary for the clarity of the pond water.

Plants look wonderful in ponds and they help the ecosystem to be balanced.

Plants also do provide oxygen for the water. But having an abundance of plants will throw the balance of oxygen out of the window.

Fishes produce nutrients in the pond and they are absorbed by plants. But if you don’t have enough plants in the pond these nutrients will be food for the algae. As a result, the rate of algae growth will increase dramatically.

For this reason, try to have the right amount of plants is one of the simplest natural ways of having clear water in the pond.

Try to cover your pond with 40-60 percent of plants. Oxygenating pond plants offer shade as well as reduce algae growth. Therefore these plants can be a great help to clear up the pond water.

This balance is not that much simple than you think. Because too much sunlight will bring extra algae and too much shade is not good also for the water and the fishes.

If you are not maintaining the balance carefully, your crystal clear pond can be turned into green damp overnight.

Well, this is known as algae bloom. This can be caused by warmth or direct sunlight and also along with fish wastage of your pond. With this algae can easily take over your pond and destroy the quality of the water easily.

Algae growth is normal in a pond only when it is in a balanced way.

Algae in the bottom and the sides of the pond is fine. But try to remove them from the surface of the pond.

Remember this is very important for your pond to maintain a good ecology and to have nice and clear water. Try restricting the algae growth using the method that I told earlier and try to have according to the number of plants in your pond. The proper balance between these two will ensure the clarity of the water.

Advantages of Natural Cleaning

Through the natural cleaning of the pond water, you will get to know about the ecology of your pond. By studying it you will learn what will be good and what will be bad for your pond.

Also, the main advantage of natural cleaning is it is very cost-effective. You can save a lot of money through this.

The results might not be quite drastic in this way. By this process, the result will come a bit slowly. But I can assure you the result will be long-lasting

Keeping the Pond water clean naturally isn’t that hard. You can do it yourself. You will just need a proper routine and proper maintenance. Also, this will not be that much time-consuming.

On top of everything, natural methods are always safe for the fish and other habitat living in the pond.

Till the Next Time…

Ponds look great when they have the perfect watercolor and the perfect balance of plants in it. You can enjoy a cup of tea with your friends while seating in front of your pond and also you can enjoy the sunset.

But a pond will not look that much soothing if the water of it is in gross color. So make sure to follow the tips carefully. I can guarantee that these tips will help you to keep pond water clear naturally.

2 thoughts on “How To Keep Pond Water Clear Naturally – 10 Actionable Steps”

  1. john doyle catherine

    i had blanket weed it was very bad i bought blanket weed killer i read that when weed dead i was cleaning my filters i bought slough remover i still have brown greeny water and still cleaning please help

    1. Hi Catherine. Hope you are doing well.
      The brownish-green color may have been caused by the dead blanket weed. Don’t worry. This will take some time to clear up. Keep removing the sludge and run the filter. If you want to get clear water fast you can install an activated carbon or charcoal filter or filter media. A partial water change will also be helpful.

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