At first glance, water gardening may seem too complex or too much work to care for, when in reality it isn't. Once it is set up, a water garden requires less work than a regular garden and it will add a completely new dimension to your yard!
You can easily add your yard's tranquility with the soothing sound of running water in the background and the colorful display of fish swimming amongst water lilies, irises and foliage plants. Best of all, it's not as difficult as you think and doesn't require a huge amount of yard space. In fact, you can even have a container pond right on the balcony of your apartment building or condo.
POND PLACEMENT CONSIDERATIONS
Choosing a Site: It's best not to choose a site that directly under/beside a tree. Although it may look nice, tree roots could eventually grow through the liner of your pond and damage it. If you want a clear, clean pond without vegetation, choose a shady spot. Sunlight will encourage algae growth.
Consider your plants: Think ahead about what type of plants you want in your pond. Most flowering water plants, such as lilies, require full or partial sunlight. Make sure to choose an appropriate area to support your desired plantlife.
Think before digging: Beware of gas lines and electrical wires before you decide to start digging. If necessary, contact your Most municipality for assistance in marking out any utility lines.
Consider fencing: Children and pets will be drawn to your pond. You may wish to consider a fence or other protective barrier if you think they are at risk of injury.
POND SIZE & SHAPE CONSIDERATIONS
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Consider your Intent: Decide if you want you pond to be a focal point of you yard, or just a soothing edition to the background. Choose a location & size accordingly.
Consider the style of your home: A good design technique is to match the style of your pond to the style of your house. Examples: Natural freeform pond shapes & design work well with cabins and cottage-type homes. Formal Victorian-style homes work well with tailored shapes.
Consider fish: Make sure your pond size is large enough to support the amount of fish you want and keep in mind that they will only grow as large as their environment allows.
Consider added features: Additions such as waterfalls, statues or fountains can affect the size and shape of your pond. It is best to consider your total design image when deciding on your pond's size and shape.
GETTING STARTED - NECESSARY PURCHASES
- A Strong Shovel - To dig out your pond area.
- A Pond Liner - Look for something sturdy & high quality- It's worth it. This can be purchased at your local garden centre. Bring along your measurements & speak to someone about the size, thickness of the material you need for the shape and size of your pond. You could also purchase a pond kit, which will come with a free-from, hard plastic pond shape, pump, and fountain accessories.
- Rock Material - A good amount of rocks, slate, or gravel will be needed to hold the liner in place around the edges of your pond. Choose your rock material based on your design concept. If you plan on building raised walls around your pond, gravel will work well because it is easy to build on top of.
- A Pump - Look for a good quality pump. Proper water circulation will allow you to easily maintain a healthy pond.
- A Fountain or Waterfall - The water that gets filtered through your pump will need to enter back into the pond through either a fountain or a waterfall. This will also add to the attractiveness and the soothing sounds of your pond.
- A Filter or Skimmer - To keep your pond clean and healthy and free of algae, you'll also require a filter or a skimmer.
- Lighting Options - A nice addition to any outdoor pond is lighting. There are many options available that can add to the beauty of your pond. These will vary from regular landscape lighting that stands around the pond edges or special pond lights that fit into the water.
- Fish - Koi and goldfish are common pond dwellers and can significantly add to the interest and beauty of your pond. Keep in mind that koi and goldfish need excellent water quality to thrive and stay healthy, which means a good filtration system is necessary. Koi in particular need a deep pond with much filtration that is taken care of like a large outdoor aquarium. The pond will need to be cleaned regularly and the koi must be fed daily. You may not wish to grow vegetation in a koi pond because the koi will eat it quickly.
A goldfish only pond requires less maintenance, but only if the goldfish are not fed. If they are fed, the fish can grow larger than the pond can support and multiply. To maintain a balanced ecosystem and have the least maintenance, the goldfish must survive in the pond with the existing vegetation and not be fed.
- Plant Life - As the popularity of water gardens grows, so does the availability of plants that grow well in water. The variety is nearly endless. The most popular and one of the most beautiful are the water lilies. They are available in hardy or tropical, day or night blooming forms. Irises & Cattails are also common pond plants.