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A Complete Guide to Controlling Algae with Barley Straws







     It is not clear when the barley straws started, but it is pretty obvious that these straws are pond owners’ and fish farmers’ pals. Because of its popularity, it is not new or surprising to find bales of barley straw being sold in pond centres and garden shops for use in small ponds or fountains to control algae. However, are there valid proofs or research that supports the claim? Or is it just a mere speculation from people who thought that algae were preventative cure for algae?

Where it all started?

The use barley straw started since the early 1990s in England. There was legend that an English farmer dropped off the bales of barley straw in a heavily algae-infested pond. After few weeks, the pond turned normal after it had been immersed in barley straw. The news scattered throughout the town, and then most fishermen did the same to their ponds.

However, laboratory studies done by English researchers propose that there are particular species of algae that can be prevented by barley straw treatment. But there are pieces of evidence from English fish farmers that barley straws can help clear the contaminated water and reduce algal populations when used over time.

Best Practices

There are various recommendations in terms of the use of barley straws, but most of these suggestions are taken from experienced English or British farmers. Here are some of the most important tips in applying barley straw in your pond:
• The most common mistake made by pond owners is throwing some huge stocks of barley straws into the water, without breaking the straws into pieces. The straw must be unpacked and broken loosely to allow proper aeration. For best results, the straws can be placed in a net so the air and water can freely circulate through the straw.
• There may have been different dosages recommended, but the most common dosage is 225 pounds of barley (or 5 bales) per acre of water. The water may work in either shallow or deep water. The maximum depth for shallow water is about 4 to 5 feet in depth, but the maximum depth for deep water is still undetermined.
• The bales should be placed near the waterfall so the current will push the bales to the rest of the pond.
• Barley straw does not give immediate effects in algae removal. Most people thought that barley straws could kill algae, but the truth is: barley straws only suppress the growth of algae.
• Barley straws must be applied before March or April, preferably when algae are less abundant. Summer is the month of uncontrollable algae growth that is why early prevention is crucial to interrupt the growth of algae in your ponds.
• The maximum effect of barley straw is six months. It should be replaced every six months (or twice a year) to maintain the effects of barley straw in the pond.
• Excessive algae problems take longer time to see results. You can manually remove the strings of algae in the pond before applying barley straws to help neutralize the oxygen levels of the pond.






Article Source: http://www.abcarticledirectory.com

Lara Davidson is a chemist from a water treatment company. Hydra International Corporation Inc is a major chemical formulator of water treatment products. Are you looking for algae remover or algae control for your residential and business needs? Visit our website www.hydra-aqua.us for more information.


Posted on 2010-04-27, By: *

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Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.


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