Monday, June 29, 2009

I Was Starting To Think It Wasn't Going To Happen For Me

We started digging our first water garden in 2001 after a family get together when Beth looked out the patio window and said, let's start your pond. We'd talked about it and procrastinated about it for years and we didn't make a move until Beth moved us. She said, "Let's go lay out the shape with a garden house". After that we never looked back. Our first liner was a tarp we bought at Lowes and it served us well for a long time.

Our first fish were goldfish we got from my sister and a couple of koi that we bought. I was anxious to have baby koi but since we didn't, I blamed the goldfish and declared that they'd all have to go so that our koi could reproduce. But they didn't.

We finally had a nice group of koi but I knew we needed one larger individual to start the reproduction process. We bought about a 20" beauty from a reputable garden center that specialized in water gardens and shortly after we introduced him to our pond, we realized he was really, really sick. He died but not before he infected all the rest of the fish. All of them got sick, and only 3 survived. It was heartbreaking.

So we started restocking. I realized that I'd rather have a few nice quality koi as brood stock than 20 poorer quality. We spent $200 on a gorgeous sanke and $80 on a mate for her who was almost as beautiful as she was. In total we had about 15 very nice koi. Then there was a terrible thunderstorm and our koi pond was between where the lightening struck about 150 yards away and the porch light on the back of our house that it traveled to. My granddaughter took pictures of the heavy rain and you could clearly see the fish swimming about. After the lightening strike, they were all dead.

If I was heartbroken the first time, I was broken the second time. It happened in August and I couldn't even think of restocking. The koi pond became an unsightly mess that we tried to avoid looking at. We didn't protect it over winter and didn't clean it in the Spring. Then our son told us that he and his family were coming to visit and that they were stopping at the Kloubec Koi Farm in Iowa to bring us koi for our pond.

Mr. Right and I went out and started cleaning feverishly and had the old pond presentable before the new koi arrived. That was two years ago. Last year we added a larger koi that we also purchased at Kloubec Koi Farm.

And last Friday night we started seeing signs of a potential spawning event. And Saturday morning at 5:20 I watched the frenzy that was the spawning I'd been dreaming of. Thank God that my granddaughter and her husband were here to help me collect the eggs. (If you don't collect them, the koi promptly eat them.)

We put some in the aquarium and some in two tubs behind the house not far from the koi ponds.

And tonight we have lots of little pairs of eyes dragging around a tail. And we're bursting with pride and joy. If I had anybody to give them to, I'd pass out cigars.

And now, all we have to do is keep them alive.

1 comment:

  1. How exciting!!! I'm glad it all worked out for you. Is Cubbie one of the lucky parents? Be sure to show us pictures.


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