Liming of sportfishing ponds to improve response to fertilization is a common practice. The reason for liming and fertilizing these ponds is to increase their natural productivity. Quite often, people bring in water samples for analysis to determine whether or not their pond needs liming. In most cases, unless the pond was limed in the last couple of years, results will indicate that lime is needed.
When liming your pond, it's best to use regular agricultural lime if at all possible. The effects of Ag lime last much longer than those of builders hydrated lime. People often want to use builders hydrated lime because only a small amount is needed to make a change in water pH. Most people who use builders lime have to make a lime application every time they fertilize.
Many are discouraged from using Ag lime because a spreader truck cannot get to their pond, and they don't want to handle the volume necessary to lime their pond. The normal rate/acre for Ag lime is one ton. A pond owner can lay a piece of plywood over a jon boat and shovel on several hundred pounds of lime. By using this procedure, it really doesn't take that long to spread a ton of lime over your pond. When you consider that the effects may last up to three years, this technique may actually take less of your time than using the builders hydrated lime.
Do not expect to develop a good green color with fertilization if you are not maintaining the proper water pH. For more information on liming and fertilizing sportfishing ponds, stop by the County Extension Office, and ask for a copy of the publication, Management of Georgia Sportfishing Ponds. This publication contains information pertaining to all aspects of managing your pond for best fishing.