Installing an Artificial Pond
Have you ever wanted a duck pond, or other large water feature in your garden, but simply couldn't afford to own a house which had one? If so, never fear. Installing an artificial pond, though pretty strenuous work, is something that any home owner or enthusiastic gardener can do. All you need is the right materials, and a weekend of free time. Here are some easy to follow, step-by-step instructions that you can use when making your own pond.
- Pond lining material
- Landscaping fabric
- Water plants
- Hot tub filter and pump for smaller ponds
- Swimming pool filter and pump for larger ponds
- Rented backhoe for larger ponds
- Decide on a location. Look around your yard, and choose a general location as to where you want the pond. In the area that you decide on, are there trees, rocks, soil problems, pipes, or power mains that you need to be worried about?
- Decide on a size. Decide on how big of a pond that you want to install. On average, the pond should be no bigger than a large swimming pool. You want to have a balanced look to your landscape, so a good rule of thumb would be to have your pond be between 1/8 and 1/4 the total area of your yard.
- Create a blueprint. Draw up a blue print of what you want your pond to look like. This blueprint should be as accurate as possible, so take measurements of your yard before drawing the blueprint out. As you draw the blue print, be sure that you also mark down the different depths for the pond, and where the water pump and filter will be going.
- Create an outline. Following the blueprint that you drew out, take some stakes and twine and create a general outline of what your pond will look like. This will give you an idea of where the boundaries are supposed to be when you are digging.
- Dig the pond. Following the outline and the blueprints, begin digging out the bond. Start digging out the shallower portions of the pond first before digging out the deeper sections.
- Line the pond. After you have dug out the pond, begin lining the bottom with an inch of sand. This will help make a better foundation, as well as help provide proper drainage if there are any leaks from the pond itself. Once you have laid the sand base, begin laying down the pond liner. Hard liners are usually a little easier to use since you only need to slide it into the hole, but if you use flexible liners make sure that there is enough overlap between the material that there is little chance of a leak. Seal each section of flexible liner with caulking to ensure a tight seal.
- Install the pump and filter. Lay down the pump and filter hose along the bottom of the pond. Cover the hose with some landscaping fabric to help serve as an additional filter.
- Add plants and decor. Place rocks, plants, and other decorative items into the pond. These will serve three purposes. First the rocks will help to hold the landscaping fabric down, second the rocks will help provide a more natural appearance for the pond, and finally the plants will help beautify the area and make it more pleasing to look at.
- Add water and test the pond. Fill the pond with some water, and test out the work that you have done. Allow the pump and filter to operate for a little while to check to see if they are working properly. In addition, inspect your work to see if there are any leaks or other problems that need to be taken care of.
One word of caution though as you begin to install your artificial pond, check your local safety ordinances. Some communities require things such as hot tubs, pools, and ponds to have some kind of a fencing installed around them. The reason for this is that such ponds and other water features can be considered a safety hazard for children and thus require fencing.