Even though most ponds can thrive with the right types of aquatic vegetation, maintaining a healthy ecosystem requires you to keep a balance. Unwanted weeds or overgrown plants can cause significant issues, especially if you are keeping fish.Pond rakes and pond weed cutters are great for keeping your pond free of overgrown vegetation, but choosing the right one can be difficult. With so many available and so many different styles, finding one that works for you in your pond isn’t always easy.
What Are The Best Pond Rakes & Cutters?
We have spent countless hours sifting through (no pun intended) different rakes and pond cutters to help figure out which ones were actually worth your hard-earned money.After our in-depth research, reading dozens of customer reviews, and looking into our own experiences, we have found that there are three different pond rakes & weed cutters that are worth taking a look at. Each of those three is listed below.
1. Outdoor Water Solutions Heavy Duty Lake Rake - removes algae
If you’re looking for practicality with minimal fuss, the Outdoor Water Solutions Heavy Duty Lake Rake is one of the best pond rakes you’re going to find. It is constructed of lightweight aluminum, but it’s still strong and sturdy, able to remove the weeds from your pond easily.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
At the end of this guide, we have listed a handful of different ways you can help combat the weed problem in your pond, with a good pond rake being one of the best!
2. Weed Razer Jenlis Razer Rake Collapsible Pond Rake - Durable
The Weed Razer Rake from Jenlis is another excellent rake. It features a 36-inch aluminum head with sharp teeth to grab weeds by the root balls. This rake weighs in at a lightweight 6 pounds with a 9-foot handle. It also comes with 43 feet of rope to help you get extra distance.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
If you’re dealing with a large amount of vegetation and you can’t remove it all with a rake, adding some fish to your pond could be the next best solution. Carp, koi, and goldfish are all great at taking care of large amounts of pond weeds!
3. Weed Razer Muck Razer Aquatic Weed & Root Eliminator - Designed with hooked teeth
Now comes the bottom rolling rakes. This is the only roller rake we’ve featured because, while they are effective at removing weeds, the two rakes listed above are more effective. Now, if you’re in the market for a roller, the Weed Razer Muck Razer is the best you’re going to find.
Pros & Cons
Did You Know?
If you are going to use a roller rake to get down into the root system, you could purchase a standard rake to retrieve the weeds that you have cut down!
Best Pond Cutter & Rake Buyer’s Guide
When you’re spending money on new equipment to keep up your pond or lake, you want to make sure that you’re buying something that will last for a long time. We understand the frustrations and have created this buyer’s guide to help you along the way.Each of the factors below was considered while putting together our list of pond rake reviews above. While you’re deciding which one is perfect for you, take a look at the different factors to help make your buying decision.
floating rakes vs. sinking rakes
Nearly every rake available can be used to remove weeds that are directly in front of you while you are looking at your pond or lake.
If all you intend to do is remove those directly in reach of the shoreline or dock, the length of pole that you choose should help maximize how far you can reach out into the water.
Quite a few different rakes come pre-equipped with handle ropes you can use to throw the rake into deeper water. The rope allows you to pull the rake back while removing aquatic vegetation at the same time.
If this is how you intend to use the rake, you are going to want to purchase a model that has a long rope attached to it. You can also purchase more rope to extend the amount of reach that you have available.
When you are using a longer rope, you can get away with buying a rake that has a shorter handle. This will give you more leverage to toss the rake into the pond with enough rope to easily retrieve it after. The shorter handle also helps avoid getting snagged on logs.
The second type of rake is what pond keepers refer to as a “beach roller.” These rakes use a large, rotating drum that contains studded teeth. It is also attached to a pole so you can move the roller back and forth on the bottom of the pond.Beach rollers help loosen the sediment so that the aquatic vegetation will break free and release itself from the bottom. You will need a longer handle to use a rolling rake, and they are known to require more physical activity than other styles.
When you’re using a pond rake or cutter the way it is designed to be used, you definitely want to make sure you’re buying a quality product up front. Cheaper, more inferior products are known for broken handles and bent teeth, which can lead to a bad day for you.
Rakes are going to come in a variety of different materials, ranging from steel and aluminum or some combination of the two. Some cheaper rakes may also come in plastic.
The materials in your rake are going to determine how durable it is as well as how much it weighs. Metal rakes are the most common type and provide much higher durability, but they’re also going to be heavier and require more effort on your part.
Getting rid of the aquatic vegetation in your pond or lake is an extremely physical activity, there’s no way around it. The heavier your equipment, the more you’re going to be working whenever you use it.That means you’re going to want to check the weight on the rake or cutter you’re getting before you buy it. If it’s too heavy, you won’t want to use it, and if it’s too light, it could be because the manufacturer skimped on quality, and the rake is going to break.
You’ll also want to consider whether you’re going to want a floating rake or a sinking rake.
Floating rakes are buoyant and designed to help capture floating vegetation, like lily pads. On the other hand, sinking rakes are meant to drag along the bottom of the pond and reach the weeds that you may not necessarily see while looking into the lake.
Rolling rakes are the most common type of sinking rake. They stay in direct contact with the bottom of the pond, so they are more efficient to use than most classic-styled rakes.If you aren’t sure whether your rake is going to float or sink before you purchase it, you can read the manufacturer’s specifications or read through customer reviews. They will typically let you know if it’s designed to float or sink.
The teeth on pond rakes can vary wildly from short to long and everything in between.
Longer teeth are going to be able to reach down into the dirt and pull weeds up by their root system. But, longer teeth also create far more sediment in your water.
Thinner, sharper teeth are going to perform best when you need to dig down deeper into the lake bottom. Wider, flatter teeth are used larger surfaces that help gather weeds up into a ball that you can collect when you’re done.
Some rakes will use tapered tines that help combine the best of both previous types of teeth.
Others will use beveled teeth that act like chisels to cut weeds out of the pond.
When you’re thinking about the type of teeth you need, you will want to decide how you’re going to get weeds from the bottom of your pond. If the weeds are collected together, one type of tooth is going to be better than another that is designed for floating vegetation.You will also want to think about the width of the rake head. A wider head is going to collect more weeds on each pass through the water, but they also increase the amount of work it takes to get those weeds back to you.
Sometimes, you’re going to find rakes that use special features to make it easier for you to use and increase their functionality.
Some may come with detachable floats, while others will have extended handles. Some may come with longer ropes or make it possible for you to fold the rake up to make it easier to store.
The extra features that you get are determined by how you intend to use the rake and whether or not you think you will need (and use) those features.
Are Lake Rakes A Good Idea?
Overgrown weeds in your pond or lake can make it difficult for fish to survive and create problems for your boat’s motor. Swimming in an overgrown pond can also become a dangerous situation because of underwater hazards.
Whenever you are dealing with large amounts of weeds, you’re also going to be dealing with a large amount of decaying plant matter.
As plant matter begins to die and decay, it will start to starve oxygen from the water. This can significantly diminish your fish population and create awful smelling pollution. Weeds will also keep natural wildlife from helping cultivate a healthy environment in your pond.
Dead plant matter will also give mosquitoes and other harmful parasites a place to breed, which can cause issues for you and your family when you’re near the water.
A large amount of weeds in your lake dramatically offsets the natural ecosystem and should be dealt with before the weeds take over more than 25% of your lake or pond.
Rakes are one of the most inexpensive solutions for dealing with this significant problem. For larger ponds, they are also one of the best solutions.
In larger lakes and ponds, a rake may not necessarily make sense. The range you can use with a rake is severely limited. You could also have issues using your rake in a pond that is entirely overtaken by vegetation.Rakes are, by their design, not very good at getting rid of dying and decaying muck or plant matter left behind from an unmanaged lake, either. If you are dealing with a large amount of muck and dead vegetation, you will need to consider other options
Should You Use A Pond Cutter?
Weed cutters are a lot different than weed rakes. Where a rake is designed to remove the vegetation from your pond, weed cutters cut the weeds and leave the vegetation ball behind. That means you’ll still need to deal with it.
If you’re considering using a pond cutter or looking for the best pond cutters, we have a few reasons that you may want to reconsider your decision. While we aren’t against them in every situation, we highly recommend not using a weed cutter in most situations.
Below are the reasons why we highly recommend not to use weed cutter in most situations
you may have a long-term problem
you may be wasting moneySpend some time sifting through customer reviews of pond weed cutters, and you’re going to realize that your money could be spent elsewhere. The blades on pond cutters are known for becoming dull very quickly. This means you’ll end up replacing the cutter soon after buying it.
You’re going to have different types of weeds in your pond. While the cutter may be able to get some of them, you’re going to have others that have a film on them. This film makes them slick and nearly impossible to grab with the blades on the cutter.
Even though you cut the weeds, you still have to get those weeds out of the pond. If you can’t get them after you’ve cut them, they’re going to decay and create organic pollution. This type of pollution sticks and creates an environment for mosquitoes and parasites to thrive.On top of that, if you have fish in the pond, the decaying plant matter will starve the oxygen in the water and could end up harming your fish. Even though the cutter can cut the weeds, you still have to remove them from the water when you’re done efficiently.
Let’s assume you use a weed cutter to get rid of the weeds. What are you going to do about the root system that is left behind? This root system will quickly respawn new plants, and then you’re stuck doing the work all over again.A pond rake is always a better decision than a pond weed cutter. Take our word for it when we recommend a good rake and the little bit of extra effort it takes to get rid of the weeds the right way. Your work will pay off, and you won’t be facing all of these issues again in the future.
How To Naturally De-Weed Your Pond
If your pond is being overtaken and you want the weeds to disappear, there are quite a few different options at your disposal. Controlling your weeds doesn’t have to feel like you’re walking into a nightmare.Below are a bunch of different options you can use to get rid of the weeds in your lake
vegetation groomersIf you are dealing with a pond that has been completely taken over by weeds, you may need to call in the big dogs. A powerful vegetation groomer can, essentially, decimate the entire weed population down to depths of four feet. You will want to net your fish before you start, though!
One of the most cost-effective methods you can use is to put on your swimsuit and dive into the pond to start pulling weeds. It’s free and great exercise. However, it’s time and labor-intensive and may not necessarily work if you have a large pond or lake.If you’re going to use this technique, make sure you are pulling them out by the root system to prevent them from growing back.
If using heavy-duty equipment on your pond isn’t necessary, you can also put precautions in place to help prevent weeds from being able to grow out of control. Koi, carp, and goldfish all love to feast on aquatic vegetation, so stocking your pond with them can make your life easier.
A few grass carp can completely decimate your weed problem before you realize how big they’ve grown. One carp can eat up to 2 to 3 times their body weight in aquatic vegetation every single day.
However, before you start adding carp to your pond, you will need to check with the laws in your local area. In some areas, carp can be considered an invasive species, and adding them into your pond is deemed to be illegal to do.The worst situation you can find yourself in is with a pond that is free of vegetation, but new fish that you’ve become fond of now need to be removed by the fish and game warden. On top of that, the hefty fines they’ll hit you with will make you wish you bought a rake the first time!
If you aren’t dealing with a complete overgrowth of aquatic vegetation, you can add dye to your pond to help prevent weeds from growing in the first place. Pond dyes work by dying the water column to help prevent the sun’s ultraviolet light from making its way through.When you block the UV light, you are starving the weeds of the source of life they need to survive and thrive. They will not be able to move through the photosynthesis process required to grow to a point where they become the problem.
Now, even though we include herbicides in the list, they are a last line of defense against pond weeds. Herbicides could poison your fish and make the water toxic, so you aren’t able to swim in it or enjoy it any longer.
Herbicides are a quick and dirty, cost-effective way to rid your pond of weeds completely. However, you are going to be limited by what you can restock into the pond for an extended period of time. It could be months before your water is safe for fish and other aquatic creatures, again.
In our experience, the best, safest, and easiest way to remove weeds from your pond is with a high-quality pond rake. If you absolutely must, one of the best pond cutters can help you clear your shoreline of weeds, but they will grow back as time goes on.
What Are The Best Pond Rakes & Best Pond Cutters?After extensive research, pouring through customer reviews and sifting through dozens of different pond rakes, we have found that the best pond rake available in 2019 is the Outdoor Water Solutions Heavy Duty Lake Rake.
Affiliate links & Images from Amazon Product Advertising API. Last update on 2019-12-04.
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