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Saturday, April 13, 2013

Tastes and tips #1

Lemongrass and basil martini. Extra lemon, vodka, ice cold pineapple juice
Soya sauce, light garlic and fresh ginger whizzed up with a touch of sugar for sushi dipping sauce.

Friday, April 05, 2013

Blogging like a mad man. Why won't it do what I want it to?! :-)

A couple of very select Koi from our latest shipment...

A few of the new Koi just released from quarantine. Show quality and some truly epic Koi from Torazo, Sakuma, Takahashi, Shinoda et al.


Thursday, April 04, 2013

Scheduled for demolition

It never wins any friends. But how can one paint lipstick on a pig?

Maybe it's an issue of jaded wisdom, or one of exasperation. I'm not sure but I was called to go and see a pond that a customer had some concerns over. Turned out to be a pond 10m by 2m wide by 1.6m deep - so around 32kl. Actually, exactly 32 kl because this pond had a completely flat bottom.

It also had two great big square concrete pillars in the middle each with a 'fountain' type arrangement in the middle of the pillar.

Two bottom drains were installed - and as soon as I saw a flat bottom pond and two conventional gulley type 50mm drains with those nice gulley type drain covers on them - you know the ones that block in a nanosecond there is a hint of blanketweed anywhere in the pond? - and I knew 'we was in trouble here slim jimmy jo bob pants squire'! Game over man, game over!

Two 'specially configured' external venturi's (special because the venturi unit was situated outside the pond in the wall - ever want to fix/work on that?) face off the opposite and spout water back to the pond more or less in line with the drains themselves further added to my now already high levels of discomfort. 

I was particularly heartened however by the 5kl JoJo tank sunk into the ground and then surrounded by concrete that was acting as the settlement chamber for the pond. This was bound to work well, fed as it was by the 2 50mm pipes from the sad little drains. Problem was the pipes had been brought up and fed into said JoJo tank aout 200mm below surface level of the pond, with the net effect that honestly, I could fill the tank from my bladder faster than these drains were delivering. 

A recently installed .45 kW pump was sat on the side of the pond sucking water from the pond and pushing it into the JoJo tank to provide the second pump with enough water to actually run without pulling the JoJo tank completely dry in under 30 seconds. 

Said .45 was choked back hard - to the point where I am sure a small 80w pond pump would deliver more volume. This was necessary to prevent the JoJo tank from overflowing of course.

Then things started to get really bad. I'll spare you the details of the filtration but rest assured the pond positively glows by comparison. 

My take on it was simply that I wanted nothing to do with it at all. The only way we would get involved is with a jack hammer and to rebuild the pond from scratch. It cannot be fixed, it cannot be coaxed or teased into something resembling a Koi pond. By the time proper drainage could be installed, the system would have been chopped and changed to the point where half the money for a new pond would have been spent anyway, coupled with what has already been spent, sorry, wasted. 

No. Far better to get the right thing now, and work with that than a half fix that will always only ever be a half fix of what the pond could and should have been from the beginning. 

The most annoying thing of all is that the pond wasn't cheap. Considering what we charge to build a Koi pond, I was astounded as to what was passed on as a 'Koi pond' built by an 'expert'. 

In this game I have always said you cannot afford to be ignorant. This case proves the point, literally.