Keeping a Pond in your backyard regardless of the size, requires a certain amount of skill and knowledge both in the construction, maintenance and care of the fish and plants that call the place home. After a couple of years, we all begin to feel comfortable in handling the day to day problems that sometimes arise. Not everyone can change out a pump or solve a problem with filters and UV lights but there are a goodly number of the Membership that are quite capable of completing any of those tasks and many similar ones. Maybe you are one of those handy people? Even if you are not, you can certainly feed fish and change out filters on a daily basis and if a problem was to arise, a quick call to Ellen and she could contact one of the more knowledgeable members to come and help.
You might be interested in a new idea that we are kicking around where as individuals, we can help out our fellow Ponders in times of need. Because maintaining a pond is fairly specialized, it is not easy to find someone to look after the pond if you as the pond owner, want to take a trip and be away for a few days. It would be doubly nice if you knew that person is also handy enough to make any small repairs that might be needed and it would certainly give you peace of mind during your absence.
What we are trying to do is to find Members who would volunteer their time to help out others who want to leave on a trip and be away from their ponds for a a few days. Ideally, we need several people who are located in different parts of the town and even in the outlying neighborhoods like Bastrop, Round Rock and Georgetown so that the amount of travelling by the volunteers is kept to a minimum.
There are two parts to this, the first being to volunteer and be added to the list of available Pond Sitters. That list will be maintained by Ellen Filtness and she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
The second part is to ask for your comments if you foresee the need for such a service to you personally in the near or distant future. Maybe, like me, you keep putting off that trip because of the water features that are your pride and joy and the wonderful large Koi that you have raised and that you worry about as you have no knowledgeable person to look after them. I know that even an overnight trip is a worry as invariably, if something is going to go wrong, it seems to happens overnight and it would certainly ease the mind knowing that you have a competent person looking after things in your absence. Depending on the response, will decide if we will go ahead with this idea. If you foresee the need or want to volunteer, please fill in one of the short forms below and submit it to Ellen. ——————————————————————————————————————
In keeping with the last two meetings that were held outdoors, the first at Zilker Botanical Gardens and the second at the AquaDome, the Austin Pond Society held the July Meeting at Mayfield Park, here in Austin. (more…)
The third Monday of the month rolled around just as it is supposed to and with it, the Austin Pond Society held their monthly meeting at the usual place, Zilker Botanical Gardens. This meeting was just a little different as instead of a Speaker, we opted to take a Tour of the beautiful facilities that we call home.
We met as we usually do in the Zilker Meeting Room and were treated to Fried Chicken with all of the fixin’s accompanied with sides and deserts supplied by the members which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. Following the meal, Barb Reinhardt, who was filling in for Jeannie Ferrier, the President who was away on personal business, introduced four new members and then held a brief Q and A prior to everyone joining the three Docents who had so very kindly volunteered to show us around. (more…)
The Austin Pond Society held it’s April Meeting at the same place and same time this past Monday, April 16, 6:30 pm at Zilker Botanical Gardens Clubhouse. It was attended by a little over forty members which was not surprising as this meeting was the Annual Plant Swap. This always nurtures a lot of interest as the members bring in their unwanted plants to exchange for others of a different variety. In theory, you had to bring in plants in order to be eligible to swap for other plants but in reality, there are always so many plants left over at the end of the meeting that it didn’t matter if you had plants of your own or not. The donating members didn’t care as they would have to take them back home if they didn’t exchange hands.
The food for the evening was the good old American staple, namely hot dogs with all of the fixin’s and deserts provided by the members. Yours truly made do with a bag of chips and several cookies as I don’t eat hot dogs. Following the meal, Jeannie, our President got right into announcements and the small bit of business that needed to be done. She was followed by Barb as the Special Events Organizer who explained to the group the rules of the Plant Swap. As usual, the volunteers who had arrived early and had helped with the set up all went early as they had have first dibs. They were given about five minutes to grab whatever they fancied before the rest of the ticket holders rushed out to fight over whatever remained. They were followed by those without tickets to hopefully grab all that was left to save the donators having to take them back home. Incidentally, the tickets signified that you actually had contributed something in the way of plants or fish. I opted to not donate anything this year as the few remaining plants that I have at home will be used in my own ponds. This did give me more time on taking the pictures and videos so it had some positives.
The swap went very quickly and the meeting was over by 7:30 pm with even the cleanup completed. This has to be one of the fastest meetings on record.
The next meeting will be held on May 21 at the Austin Aquadome. More details to follow. The three videos that I made are below.
The first is entitled 2018 April Business.
and the second is the Annual Plant Swap live.
The last is a slideshow to music of all of the pictures that I took
The third Monday of the month rolled around as it does on a regular basis which is also the day, actually evening, that the Austin Pond Society hold their monthly meeting. There were about forty two people that showed up and they were treated to a Chinese meal from one of our Sponsors, Bamboo Bistro. The food was absolutely delicious and there was none left at the end of the night. Thank You Bamboo Bistro. BTW, as a sponsor, they offer a 10% discount on all of their food by showing your APS Membership card.
With the meal out of the way, the Speaker for the evening was Dr Geigel who spoke to us a couple of years ago. Dr Geigel is a travelling fish doctor although he treats any and all animals and birds no matter what type they are. For the evenings lecture, he focused on fish and fish ailments. At the end of his presentation he took many questions from the floor all related to fish illnesses.
Following the Speaker, Jeannie, our President took over. There was very little official business, just a lot of general discussion. The evening ended with the drawing for the door prizes which always leads to much mirth and laughter as different and various people win the prizes. My apologies for the quality of this video. My original video camera that I had setup, the battery went dead so I grabbed a second camera and shot this without the use of a tripod. Again, my apologies.
The next meeting will be on April 16, Income Tax Deadline Day. Hope you have filed yours in time. This meeting is our Annual Plant Swap when members bring in their surplus fish, garden and pond plants to swap or giveaway to anyone that either wants them or is willing to take them. However, at the end of the evening, any unswapped plants are the responsibility of the original owner who must take them home. If you are looking for plants (or fish) bargains, this meeting is for you. This is not restricted to just pond plants. Any form of garden plant can also be swapped, The one exception are any invasive species which also applies to pond plants. Hope to see you there.
This is not to be confused with the Annual Swap and Sell Meeting held later in the year which is more about material items such as used pond and garden equipment.
This is the view through the windows looking outside at the Zilker Garden.
The Austin Pond Society held it’s monthly meeting at the usual place, Zilker Botanical Gardens in Austin. About thirty members showed up and were treated to a meal of Pulled Pork with Coleslaw. There were a lot of deserts including a strawberry pie that was absolutely delicious. Thanks to the Members for supplying these wonderful treats.
The original Speaker for the evening, Kieran Docker, is a Pond Builder who had an emergency with one of the ponds he had built and had to attend to it causing him to miss the meeting. That left an empty space in the proceedings but Barb Lenhardt who is our Programs Director came up with a very innovative idea to fill the time. She presented to the group an idea she had to rebuild her pond and asked the group for opinions. It was like opening up a floodgate with some very interesting ideas and comments plus a lot of good humor. In no time flat, the hour had passed. (more…)
Listed below are the Sponsors for the Austin Pond Society. We encourage you to give them your business and support. You can reach them by clicking on the link to their email. If they have a website, you can reach that by clicking on their business card.
JP & Associates, Realtors
Realtor Located in Austin
Barb Lenhardt with JP and Associates, Realtors
Cell: (512) 820-8210
Office: (972) 836-9295 ext 1418 email@example.com
Hill Country Water Gardens
Located in Cedar Park firstname.lastname@example.org
1407 N Bell Blvd, Cedar Park, Texas 78613
Phone: (512) 260-5050
10% discount by showing your APS Membership Card
Water Garden Gems
Located in Marion, Texas
3230 Bolton Road, Marion, TX 78124
Hours:9:00 am – 5:00 pm
10% discount by showing your APS Membership Card You can contact them using this link.
DeVerna Remodeling, Inc
Located in Round Rock, Texas
DeVerna Remodelling, Inc
Phone: (512) 585-5704
Located in Austin (Two locations)
Bamboo Bistro 11101 Burnet Rd, Ste A-100
Austin, TX (512) 821-0022
and Bamboo Bistro West Gate
6818 W Gate Blvd,Austin, TX (512) 243-5588
10% discount by showing your APS Membership Card
So starts a New Year for the Austin Pond Society. What will it bring, I wonder? We usually follow the same pattern every year. All of our meetings are set up to incorporate different things and we pretty much stick to the same items year after year. The Speaker that Barb Lenhardt, our Programs and Special Events Board Member had originally set up for this meeting had to withdraw at the last minute. This meant that we had to improvise which, as it turned out was no problem as we spent nearly all of the meeting discussing our lack of a Pond Tour Director and what to do instead.
But, I am getting ahead of myself. The meeting was attended by thirty members and as usual, Steven Monfrini, our Hospitality Volunteer put on a spread for us to enjoy. This time, we had many choices in which to make our own sandwich or in some cases, sandwiches. Our members absolutely outdid themselves with the choices of deserts and there was a whole table just loaded with goodies. I was torn between a sandwich or desert and resolved the issue but having both.
This past Sunday, the Board members and a few friends held their Christmas party at Jeannie Ferrier, the President’s house. Altogether there were 17 of us gathered together to enjoy each other’s company made all of the better for not having to be planning or making decisions for something or another. There were a few members missing having already made other Christmas plans but those that did attend got to enjoy all manner of good food, good company and fun and games.
The first part of the time spent together was viewing the two ponds that Steve and Jeannie have in their back yard along with all of the other garden related items that are so tastefully displayed. As usual, being Pond Enthusiasts, we bombarded Steven with many questions about different aspects of his ponds which he was more than happy to answer. it is an interesting fact that nearly all pond enthusiasts are very happy to pass along any knowledge they may have regarding different aspects of their ponds and gardens.
We all moved back indoors and I took a lot of pictures of the guests and the layout. The lighting was a real challenge with indoor lights, dark areas and then outdoor light coming through the windows. I was constantly having to make adjustments to the camera. There was a lot of food and people were wandering around from place to place with plates in their hands and happily munching away as they explored all of the different dishes that were available. People paired of in groups as different conversations were going on.
Jeannie called us all together as it was time to play our Annual Christmas game of swapping presents. This game is a little different as you were issued a number and when it was your turn, were able to go and pick out one of the wrapped gifts. You had to open it so that others could see what you had drawn as the next number was able to choose between taking a new unopened gift OR steal one from the gifts already opened and on display with the other guests around the room. If you took one of the other persons gifts, then they had the chance to go again in the hope of being able to keep what they had this time. I think I set a new record as I lost 4 gifts that I had won finally ending up with a bottle of wine that no one could steal from me as I was the last person to draw. As I don’t drink, I was able to swap it with Steven for a cactus which was a part of the gifts he had won. It was a lot of fun and raised much laughter as the presents were unwrapped only to be stolen by others.
Following the game, Jeannie announced that next year’s Pond Tour would be a very small members only spread over 3 weekends with Nancy Reinert organizing the South side, Nancy Hall the North and B.J. Jenkins the East side of town. That is assuming that no one steps up to be the Pond Tour Chairperson.
The party broke up after a very nice afternoon’s entertainment of good cheer, good food and good company as we each made our way home. This was the last activity for this year for the Austin Pond Society.
This has been a good year for the group. We had several very good and entertaining speakers at our meetings, the Plant Swap was fun as was the Swap and Sell meeting. The Pond Tour was a smashing success thanks to Ted and his band of willing helpers and we raised $4000.00 dollars for a charitable cause. On the Fish Rescue side of things both Jeannie and Steven with help from others and Frank who worked mostly alone on the smaller rescues, were busy throughout the year. Membership hovers around the 100 mark with about half of that number attending the monthly meetings. As usual, Steven as the Hospitality Volunteer remains the most popular person in the club as the food provided was excellent. We look forward to the start of a new year and a new season for the Austin Pond Society. The first meeting will be held at the Zilker Gardens Clubhouse on Monday, January 15 2018. Hope to see you there.