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Beginners Gardening

Master the Art of Building a Garden Pond – A Step-By-Step Guide



A garden pond is the perfect spot to relax after a long day. It can offer peace and tranquility to people who are overwhelmed with a hectic lifestyle.

Keeping your pond in good condition is easier than you might think. Plants in the pond can help reduce the growth of algae, filter out nitrate and phosphate nutrients and provide shade to prevent excessive sunlight.

Choosing the Perfect Location

A garden pond adds beauty to your landscape and attracts wildlife. You can grow a wide variety of water plants in your pond.

Make sure your pond is located in a spot that is easily accessible for maintenance. A pond is easier to care for when you can walk right up to it and watch its inhabitants. Also, a pond is more fun when it’s close to the house.

Digging the Appropriate Hole

Whether you dig your own pond or use pre-formed ones, it’s important to think ahead and include channels for pipes and wires. This helps to ensure that once digging begins everything is ready for the final stages of pond construction.

It’s also a good idea to lay down a layer of weed-blocking underlayment, available from water-garden supply companies. This protects the liner from sharp rocks and other debris that can puncture it.

Installing a Reliable Pond Liner

The liner will likely need to be secured with rocks or other heavy objects as it drapes around the edges of your dug-out pond. As you do this, keep in mind that the weight of water will help to automatically contour it to your pond’s shape.

Fold and tuck excess liner material at corners so that they won’t stick out like sharp teeth. It’s best to complete this step while the pond is still full of water.

Filling the Pond with Water

Long before a shovel hits the dirt, you’ll need to think about the size and price of a pond liner. This is important because a pond cannot be larger than its underlying liner.

Early delicate nuances tend to soften and be obliterated by subsequent additions like underlayment, the liner and rocks at the bottom of the pond. This is a good thing as it will make the final garden pond much easier to manage.

Adding the Right Pond Plants

A garden pond is truly transformed by the addition of a variety of pond plants. They provide an amazing array of colors, shapes and textures and help create a peaceful sanctuary.

Plants that grow within the water – known as marginal plants – provide natural filtration. Marginal plants like the Egyptian paper rush also make a stunning architectural feature. Bog plants, on the other hand, bridge the gap between land and water by thriving in reliably moist soil around the edge of the pond.

Installing the Pump

Once you’ve installed your pond liner and it has filled with water, you’ll be ready to add the final touches. Be sure to avoid placing your pond directly under trees, as falling leaves can clog or puncture the pond liner.

To give the pond a natural look, use rocks along its edges rather than edging. Make sure your stones are stacked vertically to prevent erosion.

Decorating the Pond Area

Some garden ponds benefit from extra adornments to hide the liner, create a more natural look and provide wildlife with additional havens. Terraforming the earth around the pond is a popular option for yards with earth that forms well, but you can also use a large sheet of insulation foam to add form and curves.

Be sure to remove any rocks, roots and weeds that could puncture the liner. Cover the ground with a layer of newspaper or damp sand to further prevent tears and help suppress weeds.

Ensuring Water Cleanliness

Some garden ponds are designed with unique curves and inlets. Unfortunately, these delicate nuances are often softened or obliterated by subsequent stages of the building process.

Before shoveling dirt over the pond bottom, lay down a layer of metal mesh called hardware cloth to prevent weeds from growing underneath. This will also protect the pond liner from punctures and abrasions. This is especially important for ponds in parched climates.

Checking Effectively for Leaks

Ponds can be built in any shape and size, but they must be well-designed to support healthy ecosystems. Water plants are important for the visual beauty of a garden pond as well as to help maintain balanced ecosystems.

You can use decorative rocks to hide your pond liner edges and provide additional support for the liner. Look for rounded river stones, pebbles or beach stones.

Feeding and Caring for Pond Life

Your garden pond will attract a wide range of wildlife. Having dragonflies, salamanders and wild ginger present around your pond is not only delightful but it also indicates that the ecosystem is healthy.

Mammals also visit your pond for water and to hunt. This is particularly important since they face significant challenges in obtaining the water and food that they need to survive.