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Stormwater Retention Pond Maintenance

Proper maintenance of your stormwater retention pond is critical to ensuring its health and longevity throughout the year. Far too often, these small bodies of water turn into potential safety hazards that threaten wildlife, safety, and property values.

Mosquitoes, algae, and Mother Nature’s eventual reclamation of the pond pose constant challenges to those tasked with its maintenance. We will share a few tips on successfully maintaining your stormwater retention pond so it continues to look beautiful.

What is a Stormwater Retention Pond?

A stormwater retention pond is a man-made body of water intended to help manage stormwater runoff, usually found in urban areas such as parks, golf courses, and homeowner associations.

While their main tasks are flood mitigation and preventing potentially toxic materials from entering rivers, lakes, or the water table, they are also intended to help beautiful local communities and, in some cases, provide recreational activities such as sport fishing or swimming.

Adding Plants and Vegetation

Adding plants around the shoreline buffers erosion, pesticides, and other pollutants from entering the water. If there is a slope of land adjacent to the pond, you can plant grass, which will further help stem harmful organic nutrients from traveling into the water during a rainstorm.

Native plants also provide aesthetic value. A water hole in the ground surrounded by dirt isn’t much to look at, but when you add native vegetation, it can turn into an ecological wonder. Birds and other aquatic wildlife will start to show up, and that can help increase the property values of nearby houses.

Reduce Chemical Runoff

HOAs should convey to homeowners the importance of reducing the usage of toxic pesticides and chemicals in their yards. When it rains, these dangerous chemicals will make their way to the street and eventually into the retention pond via the stormwater drains. Some homeowner associations have even banned “cosmetic” lawn chemicals, which help combat pollutants from entering the pond.

Aerate the Turf

The turf surrounding the stormwater retention pond can become compacted over time. This, in turn, can cause erosion and a potential pond overflow when it rains. It’s critical to mow the grass and trim the surrounding vegetation regularly.

Aerating the soil annually or biannually is the best way to help prevent soil compaction. While there are many ways to do this, the basic approach is to perforate the soil with small holes that allow water, nutrients, and air to reach the grass roots.

An adequately aerated turf will allow the soil to absorb nutrients more efficiently, which can help reduce the amount of water that travels down into the retention pond during a rain event.

Removal of Organic Debris

Organic debris, such as leaves, twigs, and animal droppings, can accumulate around the shoreline. Wind and rain cause them to enter the water column, settling at the deep end. The water’s “dead area” lacks the necessary bacteria to break down the nutrients. Over time, the water becomes nutrient-rich and can cause a nuisance algae outbreak—and choke the oxygen and life out of the water.

You can also help mitigate algae outbreaks by installing a mechanical aeration system, which adds oxygen to the water. Aerating the water causes a shift in the CO2 levels, which can help prevent the ideal conditions for an algae bloom. While there are chemical alternatives to controlling outbreaks on the market, it’s not advisable to use them if the water will reach a lake or river or get absorbed into the local water table.

Dredge Your Ponds

Dredging your ponds can reduce and eliminate the organic muck at the bottom, which cuts off the food that nuisance algae feed upon. Removing the muck will also prevent man-made toxins from entering the local ecosystem. American Underwater Services specializes in HOA, golf courses, farms, and homeowners pond dredging. We can help you regain control over your ponds and turn them into crystal-clear water havens for fish, animals, and people alike. Call us today at (817) 377-8512 to learn more about our nationwide pond dredging and maintenance services. We can travel anywhere in the continental US to help with your dredging needs.

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AUTHOR ANTHONY DI IULIO

AUTHOR ANTHONY DI IULIO

Anthony Di Iulio the founder, president and co-owner of American Underwater Services, Inc., started his business in 1999 with only three employees. Today this commercial diving company employs nearly 30 people and handles over 500 projects annually. Anthony moved to Fort Worth from Louisiana with his family in 1976. He worked summers during high school welding underwater for a marina on Benbrook Lake. Eventually he took scuba lessons after almost drowning on the job. Those lessons led him to training at a deep sea diving school in Houston, which included training on offshore oil rigs. Anthony spent several years in Louisiana working on offshore rigs and on inland jobs at power plants and dams before starting American Underwater Services, Inc.

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