The Laurel Farm pond gradually re-filling
The primary objective of the renovation programme - improved water quality through the removal of accumalated organic matter and re-filling with fresh rain water - has been completed, although the Laurel Farm Pond has been slow to fill and needs the winter rains to reach the desired level. This has reduced the level of nutrients in the water leading to greater resistence to algae bloom, the proliferation of unwanted acquatic plants and has increased the level of oxygen available to fish and other wildlife.
The next stage in the process is the implementation of new landscaping during autumn of 2015 and spring next year with the objective of enhancing the visual setting for each of the ponds and ensuring that the opportunity for organic debris to fall into the ponds is kept to a minimum. Visually, care will be taken to preserve the rural informality of the common and green.
A number of willows at the Ellern Mede pond were diseased and have had to be felled and the arisings removed. It is also planned to clear some small saplings and scrub from the south side of the pond to reduce leaf-fall. Appropriate replacement trees will be planted far enough away from the pond to limit polution but this will have to wait for a year to avoid cross-contamination from the virus that killed the willows.
The Ellern Mede pond without its willows
The Orange Tree pond being prepared for landscaping