The ponds where I fish are generally small and weedy
I find that a very accurate cast into the holes in the weeds is extremely important. Also, being able to distance mend over the lilies will keep your bug in the target area longer during a drift
There are exceptions, but most often you'll need to make make a painfully slow retrieval, at least with subsurface flies. My buddy will make his cast, light up a cig and let his fly sit on the bottom while he smokes before he fishes it out with a slow finger twist retrieve.
That's a little too slow for me, but it works
Weedless flies are mandatory. I like a mono weed guard but instead of just the one loop, I tie in two. The mono loops get all bent out of shape fairly quickly in the weeds and the two loops generally will last twice as long. When one gets destroyed, you cut it off and you're still good to go.
I also like to fish bendback style flies that incorporate a bucktail weed guard.
This diver is pretty beat up, but you get the idea.