How To Build A Lotus & Lilly Pond | Kerala | India
Lotus plants are found almost everywhere in the world. There are numerous places in Kerala where you can find them. Lotus and Lilly ponds are very easy to create and with very little attention it will give you many cheerful flowers.
Lotus plant loves to receive plenty of sunshine, so while choosing a spot for your pond always select a sunny spot. For optimal growth the plants should get about 6-8 hours of sunlight, this is the easiest part.
A single Lotus plant can grow and cover an area which is 1 -2 meters in diameter. It is always ideal to plant the lotus inadequate size of pots so that it does not grow over beyond the pot.
Earthen planter boxes which are 30 C in-depth and one meter in diameter is a good size to start with. The ideal depth of a lotus pond shall be from 40 to 60 CMS. The depth may vary depending on whether you are going to have only Lotus or it is along with some small fishes.
After the area is marked for digging, before beginning the work always check for submerged pipeline and electrical cables. Proceed with the excavation once there is no visible hazard. When it is done and debris removed it is time for pond liner installation.
How to select a suitable Pond Liner?
The pond liners are manufactured from a variety of polymers like HDPE, LLDPE, FPP, PVC, EPDM etc. Synthetic rubber pond liner is one of the best alternatives to use in ponds, but they are a bit expensive.
Pond liners are available in different thickness and strength commonly referred to as GSM (grams per Square meter). The selection of pod liner shall be made after examining the soil conditions.
For outdoor ponds liners treated with UV is preferred than the normal liner. When working out measurements for purchasing the pond liner do not forget to consider the overlap at the top edges 30 cm extra on all side will be great.
Before placing the pond liner, it is wise to install a good underlay material, like geotextile, old jute sacks, old blankets etc for protection and cushioning of the pond liner. Start installing the pond liner by laying out in the centre of the pond and unfold the liners to the outer edges of the pond.
Remove any creases formed during the installation and then gradually fill it with potable water. The excess pond liners shall be neatly tucked unto the pond edges and counterweights in the form of coping stones can be added.
If tap water is used for filling up the pond, think about the chlorine dissolved in the tap water which is harmful to all plants. Aeration is a very good method to release the dissolved chlorine in the tap water.
An alternate way is to add an adequate quantity of de-chlorinator to the pond water volume which is expensive.
Next is to prepare the substrate required for planting the Lotus, In Kerala red soil is readily available in abundance, it shall be mixed with equal parts cow dung to create natural mud ideal for the Lotus to thrive.
Once the lotus is planted in pots pebbles shall be added to weight the plant down to the pots, you may remove the pebbles once the plant's roots are strong enough. Lotus plants will bloom in 5 to 6 weeks.
Installing an aerator will help in maintaining your pond's water quality. It can be a simple air pump with air diffusers or a small solar fountain depending upon the size of your lotus pond.
The good aerator or a fountain will help in circulating the pond water and will not allow becoming stagnant, it also helps in preventing the mosquitoes away and reduce the algae growth.
If you choose to add fishes to the lotus pond you should consider adding an adequate filter also. It is to remove the dissolved and suspended particles in the pond water. Also, an optional Uv water clarifier can be added to keep the water free from algae.
Lotus ponds can be build using RCC if it is going to be a permanent structure.
Remember to add the calculated amount of fertilizing for the Lotus at least once a month. Lotuses are nutrient hungry plants they love to be fertilized regularly.
Aquatic plant fertilizer is available in the form of liquid additives or the form of powder or tablet.
Always buy fish safe fertilizers if you have pet fishes in the Lotus pond. Make a point to add the fertilizer to pond in small portions so that it will not enhance the algae growth.
How to Maintain a Lotus Pond?
Maintaining a Lilly or Lotus pond is relatively very easy, mainly pruning the old leaves and flowers. A lotus flower lasts for about 3 days and shall be pruned off above the waterline.
Always trim down the brown foliage above the water surface at regular intervals. Cutting the old leaves below the water line could affect the healthy growth of your lotus plant
Clipping the brown leaves as soon as you see it, will increase the growth rate of lotus and also help in reducing the biological load in the water.
The ideal temperature in which the lotus and Lilly plants grows is above 21 °C and in Kerala, we have all the ideal conditions to grow Lotus and Lilly plants.
Wish you all a happy planting, for any support lets us know.