In ideal pond conditions, a duckweed plant can bud and divide itself into two each day which means that it gets doubled and is able to cover the entire pond within weeks. Thus, duckweed can be a menace for your pond and due to its quick growth ability, many pond owners have learnt that they can be a matter for study in exponential growth. Both watermeal and duckweed are found together in a pond and their presence is a serious concern to the aquatic fauna and flora as –
• They block the passage of sunlight which is necessary for plants’ and animals’ existence.
• This leads to killing off the healthy species including the water-cleaning algae.
• If this algae is not present in the water body, nutrient levels will explode and there will be bloom of unhealthy algae all around with a significant buildup of organic debris.
• Anaerobic bacteria creates toxic water conditions that adversely impacts turtles, fishes and other plants so the duckweed gets proliferated quickly.
So you see how important it is to have a mechanism to control duckweeds. It is generally the large ponds or small manmade lakes that gets affected by rapid proliferation as the water therein is relatively stagnant. Ponds in small backyards are less vulnerable to growth of duckweeds because they do NOT grow in moving water and a pond with waterfall or fountain will keep the growth in check. So, if it gets hold, it is quite difficult to get rid of. Therefore, it is advisable to take duckweed control measures from the start.
For this, we would suggest you a two-pronged strategy which will help you in completely eliminating weeds from your pond. The strategy will work in situations where the pond is entirely covered with duckweed. So, the first step in the removal process is –
1. Removing the Pondweed Manually: Use your hand to skim out as much duckweed as you can and for removing the weeds, you may use the pond net, pool skimmer or fishing net. If you do it on a windy day, plants will be compressed on one side of the pond and you can get rid of these notorious weeds in no time. Inevitably, a few tiny weeds will retain in the pond, but once the majority of them are taken out, use the second step of the strategy
2. Use Herbicides: To control or kill duckweeds from its root, contact, selective and systemic herbicides are available in all the three forms – liquid, granular and pellets. The major constituents of these chemicals are sonar, 2, 4 – D and clipper. It is highly recommended that you should not make use of these herbicides in excess. Use it optimally as prescribed on the bottle/packet.