Think about this before you read on.
Click on the photo above for a larger image.
These guys are in our swimming pool, along with fish, tadpoles and various toys which are joined by kidlin and ourselves on an almost daily basis after chores. It is a 12′ round kiddy pool that we scored years ago in the fall when it was on sale for 90% off. I wish I had bought all three of them. The liners alone, which we’ve replaced once, cost more than the $29 we originally spent for the whole pool! Holly says that the pool was one of our best investments ever. I think she likes the pool better than the pond in part because I can heat the water in the pool. Heating the upper pond is much harder.
When the kids swim in the pool they splash quite a bit. This waters my leek and flower garden that runs around the sides of the pool and makes for great big sweet leeks. I try to keep the leaks out of the pool though.
One must wonder as well what the various inhabitants think of the monsters that spash such waves. The good news is the splashing airates the pool and the spinning of the water we do at the end of a swim collects any dirt in the center of the pool where we can easily scoop it out. I would love to put a drain right there, next time…
I set it up so the water from the pool pumps up via that white hose in the background to the black 1″ water pipe where it circulates through about 80′ of black plastic water pipe along the top of the wall. This warms the water for Holly who prefers her pool not to be on the chilly side. It is a simple solar panel making for an inexpensive way to heated swimming pool. No extra electricity is being used since I would want the circulation pump to be going anyways.
At the end of the pipes I put reducers which slow the water down in it’s journey. Since the volume of the pump isn’t up to the full level of a 1″ pipe this keeps the pipe fuller and makes the heat transfer more effective.
But wait, it doesn’t stop there. You see I have a timer on the water pump. During the spring and fall when we want the water warmed we set the timer to run during the day when the sun is warming the pipes. Then during late July and all of August I set the timer to run at night instead in order to chill the pool via radiant cooling to the night sky. I call this a luna cooling panel and may use it in our cool room for refrigeration.
Rain adds water to the pool and about three times a year I change the water, emptying the pool out and refilling it with fresh water from the spring that supplies our house. It is nice not having chlorinated water.
By the way, when we installed the pool we did it on top of insulation so that the heat from the solar heater would not be lost. In our climate the heat loss is a issue in the fall and spring. In other climates one would invite that heat loss. Interestingly, even with that insulation from the ground warmth in winter the pool never freezes solid because the mass of water is so great (~1,800 gallons). This means we are able to over winter the fish (comets & shobunkin) in the pool – something you can’t do in a smaller pool as my mother and sister found out since their smaller water pools froze solid at about 100 gallons each.
The flowing water through the heating / cooling system serves another function. On returning it splashes back into the pool from about 2′ up. This airates the pool, stirs the pool up and moves the pool in the water about. All good things since we don’t use chemicals in the pool. Thus the green tint to the pool water. The pool is more pond like in that regard and the amphibians appreciate it as do the fish.
So how many frogs on how many logs did you see?
Did you count them all?
Did you miss any in the back?
Did you see more frogs than there are?
Did you see more logs than there are?
Did you read the instructions carefully?
There are no frogs. There are no logs.
They’re toads on surf boards!
Originally there was just one toad in the pool. Then it sang and was quickly joined by more. And more the next night. And more the next night… Time to time we take them out and return the toads, and any frogs, newts, salamanders, etc to the gardens where they help us grow food.
Toads are good in the gardens.
Toads eat slugs and bugs.
Holly does not like slugs.
Nor do I particularly.
And that is all the sillyness I’ll expose you to today…
Sat-Weds: Outdoors: 81°F/54°F Sunny, Overcast, A little rain
Farm House: 52°F/46°F planted corral, pens, house end, pond gardens
Tiny Cottage: 64°F/74°F watched concrete walls cure