A pond is a great way to enhance your landscape. You can relax next to a beautiful oasis filled with fish and plants. Or, you could welcome customers to your place of business with a gorgeous aquatic paradise.
Building a pond takes work, but the end result is well worth it. Here’s how to get started.
- Gather Supplies
You can’t just dig a hole, pour water in, and call it a pond. A fully functioning pond requires a few crucial supplies.
One of the most important is a pond liner. Without a pond liner, your pond water would disappear. The pond liner keeps the water in place and prevents it from dissolving into the ground. It also keeps your water clean by protecting your pond from micro-organisms.
While plastic pond liners are common, vinyl pond liners are a better idea. Plastic can break down and release toxins into your pond, which can harm your fish and plants.
Which size of liner should you get? You can determine the length in feet with this formula: pond length + (2 x depth) + 2. You can determine the width in feet with this formula: pond width + (2 x depth) + 2.
You may also benefit from an underlayment, which prevents punctures in the liner.
Once you’ve chosen your pond liner, you’ll need the right kind of material for your pond bed. Most people choose sand, while others choose concrete or clay. You’ll also need materials to surround your pond, including pavers or stones.
Finally, you’ll need the hardware that keeps your pond running. You’ll need a pump to circulate the water, a filter to clean the water, and a water agitator to circulate oxygen in the water. An agitator can include a waterfall, fountain, or bubbler. You’ll also need a GFCI outlet to power the pump.
- Let a Pro Help
Not sure where to build your pond? Check your building codes to find out how far to set your pond from property lines. Pick a spot where sun can shine on your pond in the morning. You’ll also want a spot that provides some shade for your pond. But you don’t want to build your pond right next to a tree, or you’ll have to constantly clean leaves out of your pond.
Unless you’re building a small pond and you have lots of experience, you should hire a professional to build your new pond. You may need to hire separate professionals to build the pond and set up the plumbing and electrical work.
- Add to Your Pond
Once your pond is complete, you’re ready to add animals and plants. The type you choose depends on your personal preferences and the look you’re going for. Popular plant choices include lotus, water hyacinth, and iris. Look for oxygenating plants that can help maintain a good oxygen level in your pond.
Popular fish include koi, which can live to 40 years, and goldfish, which live about 10 years. Goldfish can eat plants and algae, but you’ll need to feed your koi fish food. Goldfish actually eat mosquitoes, keeping them away from the pond.
Make sure to find out how your plants and animals do during different seasons. If your pond freezes in the winter, you’ll need to move many of your plants and fish indoors.
- Maintain Your Pond
You’ve chosen the right plants and fish for your pond, but that doesn’t mean your work is done. You’ll need to regularly clean your pump and filters and check them for any clogs. To prevent toxic buildup in your pond, regularly trim plants surrounding the pond and remove leaves, algae, and debris.
Each week, test the water chemistry with a water testing kit. Monitor your fish for signs of poor health such as slow movement, sores, or different eating patterns. Unhealthy fish are a sign of poor water chemistry in your pond. Too much chlorine, ammonia, and other chemicals can harm your fish and plants.
If you notice a lower water level in your pond, use a pond repair kit to fix any leaks. Add some more water along with a water conditioner.
If an inch or more of algae and muck builds up in your pond, drain the pond, wash off the liner, and refill the pond. Adding biomat filters and barley straw to your pond might help keep algae away. When your pond is not in use, drain your pond’s drains, pumps, and water lines.
Building a pond can be a difficult undertaking. Follow these steps to build a pond that’s both stable and beautiful. Addressing all the little details can help ensure that you build a pond that lasts for many years. One of the most important steps is to choose the right pond liner to protect your pond. Turn to Billboard Tarps to choose a high-quality pond liner.