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Water garden mystery

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  • Water garden mystery

    Long time lurker here but very rarely post....but I'm totally stumped/perplexed/exasperated..LOL

    For the second time after a torrential downpour (in the past month) of more than 5 inches of rain, our water garden has LOST water. Husband says both times it has lost almost 3/4 of the water it normally has. Yesterday he had to 'save' some fish from the shallow end and shoo them into the 'deeper' end while he added more water.

    It loses NO water except during these two downpours. There is a pump to cycle the water and that hose comes up over a rock with another sitting on top for camoflauge and points directly into the garden.

    What in the HECK would cause this to happen? I'm trying to rack my brain to figure out HOW that hose could possibly divert water OUT when it points directly into the garden. And it doesn't lose any water any other time except for the small amount that evaporates during dry spells. No horses can get to the garden to drink. Dogs aren't allowed in it. No elephants or hippos in the area.

    Freak of nature?

  • #2
    It is probably a very simple physical explanation, like the water level gets high enough so the hose siphons the water out.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
      It is probably a very simple physical explanation, like the water level gets high enough so the hose siphons the water out.
      I'd bet this is the explanation, too. Or you have an overflow/waste pump that kicks in when the pond reaches "flood" stage and then doesn't shut off until the water level drops below the pump intake.


      • Original Poster

        There are not any hoses ending OUTSIDE the pond (that I know of) which could be an exit for the water. The previous owners installed it originally. It's a very small one. Pump/filter sits in the bottom with the one hose attached (there is no water coming in from a spigot or anything like with a water trough). Pump is not connected to anything other than this one hose (I can pull it up - it just rests on the bottom). Hose attached to pump runs up one side and is curved back around over a rock and pointing back into the pond. Pump/filter sucks water in and pushes it thru the hose (which points directly back into the pond).

        You all may be right...I just can't wrap my mind around it!


        • #5
          the pump hose is only one option, plant material or something like that that breeches the edge can do similar I'd suppose.

          But I would bet it's some form of syphoning going on.


          • #6
            Wind? I have a "koi" pond in my front yard (koi are apparently not as fast as the goldfish, and gulp gulp for neighborhood kittehs). We lose water when it's windy, because the filter system sucks water down and then up out a fountain. The fountaining water then gets blown away.
            COTH's official mini-donk enabler

            "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


            • #7
              Have you ever seen the pond flood? If not, there's some kind of waste or overflow system in place.

              We have a small pond, with goldfish. During heavy rains, pond fills up and then overflow pump is triggered, which draws pond down below previous flood stage. Otherwise, fish would end up flopping around on our patio!

              Don't you just love these little mysteries?


              • #8
                I'll have to ask my husband - that's our business!
                Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                • #9
                  My little pond sometimes empties itself too, so I located the pump higher up so it cannot empty completely. Here's how mine does it- the pump intake gets partially clogged with debris stirred up by the storm, and so it doesn't have enough pressure. So the fountain doesn't spout, it dribbles, and it happens to dribble down a rock that the fountain sits on, tracks under the rock back to the edge and out of the pond.

                  Oh yes, and in another old fiberglas pond I had, a crack developed in the shell but it didn't open enough to let water out until the pond was full to the top. If it was only full to 2 inches below the top, the crack still held water. But with a rainstorm, it would fill up, have more water pressure and open the crack half way down and empty the pond to the same level. Took me months to figure that one out!
                  "The Threat of Internet Ignorance: ... we are witnessing the rise of an age of equestrian disinformation, one where a trusting public can graze on nonsense packaged to look like fact."-LRG-AF


                  • Original Poster

                    All very good questions and suggestions.

                    I have never 'seen' the pond flood but have filled it to the brim a couple times a year when we get into a drought. I seriously doubt there is any kind of overflow system as small as this thing is.

                    The previous owner did warn us about letting the filtered stream coming out of the hose hit the rock under the hose where it comes out instead of it dumping directly into the pond. She did say that the wind could take the water if it splashes off the rock and we'd experience low water levels. I can't say we had so much wind in all this rain to cause that. Who knows though...we certainly weren't outside watching!

                    CatOnLap - I can't imagine how much you racked your brain to figure out the crack in yours! Ours is not fiberglass but it is getting some age on it now - so I wonder if there is a hole or something starting somewhere.

                    Definitely going to have to remember to watch it closer. So far I've managed for 4.5 yrs to keep alive all of the fishies the previous owner left us. I wish hubby would leave it 'next time' until I get home so I can see and explore.