Guide Simple Guide to Garden Ponds (Simple Guide to...)

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This is where your hibernating creatures will go. Image credit: digging.

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Choose either butyl or PVC — a garden center will be able to advise you on which is the best for your pond. Place the underlay in first — this will protect against sharp stones. Next, lay the liner over your pond, and begin to fill it with rainwater.

Try to keep folds to a minimum — use some heavy stones to weigh it down if this helps. Cut the excess liner, leaving an extra foot of length all the way around. Use it to create a slope into the pond, and to hide the liner around the outside.

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Choose a mixture of floating plants, like hornwort or water hawthorn; and plants for the edges, like irises, grasses and rushes. Consider using aquatic baskets for the plants that will sit in the pond itself, like lilies — this allows you to remove them from the pond at a later date without disturbing their root system too much. Image credit: water lily. After planting, your pond will turn a vivid green color — this is the algae getting to work.

When wildlife arrives, it will magically turn clear again. The best time to set up a pond is the winter, so that it is ready for the influx of wildlife in the spring. Then, you can enjoy watching tadpoles, toads, dragonflies, birds and newts from April to August. Image credit: frog. Your email address will not be published.

A Simple Guide To Digging A Sustainable Garden Pond - Gardenerd

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. If you're looking to build a deeper pond, they will be less affected by algae because light can only reach a percentage of the water.


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It's worth knowing however, that deeper ponds do require a more expensive pond liner. Plus, fish may swim to the bottom and hide. Remember to carefully consider the size of your pond. One that takes up most of your garden won't be very convenient for you, while a small puddle-sized pond equally won't make much of a difference to wildlife.

Location can be crucial, too. Take the time to consider the proximity to your house, flower beds, fences and any areas where children play. See more below for garden pond safety with young children.

Easy Garden Pond no pump needed

Gentle curves are the best kind for a garden pond. The temptation of wanting to experiment with jagged edges and interesting shapes can often creep in, but these will eventually erode over time. Unless you are able to reinforce your pond's sides regularly, choosing a simple shape is the best way to create a brilliant wildlife-friendly pond.

Reinforcing vertical walls in a garden pond can be more difficult and costly, as it requires larger rocks that are heavier and more expensive. Shallow banks which are ideally less than halfway to a right-angle enable smaller stones to be used as loose reinforcement. It's important you protect the bottom of your pond to prevent burrowing animals from chewing at the pond liner. Make sure you lay down a protective metal mesh sheet along the floor of the pond and cover it with an even layer of dirt. Then, don't forget to put a strong pond lining in that covers all sides.

Try not to buy the cheapest pond liner either, as you want to stop unwanted dirt and water creeping in. It's better to invest in something which will last.


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  • You can shop a range of pond liners at Bradshaws Direct. The water level for a garden pond will only be as high as the lowest points around the perimeter. If the edges are too uneven in height, water could flow out at a steady rate — particularly in heavy rain. To stop heavy downpours from creating your pond to flood, identify and implement an overflow area by creating a drainage channel to a safe area of lawn, shrubbery or waste land. You'll be thankful for this during the wet weather.

    When you're ready to fill your pond, make sure not to overfill it. It's advised you leave room for rain. Pick appropriate plants and fish too, and try to stay away from any invasive plants that could ruin your pond. Please remember to avoid any kind of open water in the garden if you have young children.

    The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents RoSPA advises parents with children under 6 years old to temporarily cover ponds until they are older. You can do this by:. For more advice on garden water safety click here. Pond maintenance should become a regular task, like weeding, when spending time in the garden. The team at BillyOh.

    The best time to clean a pond is in late autumn when pond life is generally less active. Start by preparing a holding tank for the fish and deep-water plants to be kept in whilst cleaning; this should be filled with water from the pond. Use a pump to remove the water, placing any animals into the holding tank as you see them.

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    Simple Guide to Garden Ponds

    Put any plant material at the bottom of the pond on the side to help keep smaller animals safe. Remove all the silt and scrub the pond clean. Return some of the silt to the bottom of the pond, add in the plants and fill with water — rainwater is best. You can put the fish straight in once the pond is refilled. Ensure water levels are constantly topped up by ideally using conserves of rainwater to fill up the pond. Just like you would weed your garden, ponds also need weeding.

    If you pick out the floating weeds, place them on the side of the pond overnight to give any creatures clinging to them a chance to make their way back to the water. As the weather gets colder there is more chance of ponds freezing over, and potentially killing the wildlife inside depending on how severe the frost is. You can melt the ice by placing a hot pan on the surface.