Water Gardening Is a Relatively Easy Activity

Water Gardening Is a Relatively Easy Activity

According to real estate experts, adding a water garden will increase the value of your property. That is because any type of landscaping that improves the outside appearance of a property can add as much as 10% to its overall value – that is a significant amount for making this kind of upgrade.

Gardening, when done in a watery environment, is a surprisingly easy pursuit. Most backyard gardens make up a small portion of the surrounding ecosystem. However, a water garden or pond is unique because it is entirely self-contained – a type of miniature ecosystem that is part of the landscape. This kind of garden can be used to attract such species as dragonflies, frogs, and toads as well.

Water Gardening1

Where to Find Out More about the Accessories You Will Need

Once you have the pond’s hole filled with water, maintaining the garden is relatively easy provided you use the right water pump and accessories. You can find out more information about the tools and equipment you will need by referring to such sites as  http://www.water-garden.co.uk/.

Locating the Pond

The biggest challenge about water gardening is excavating the hole for the pond. Regardless of the pond’s size, make sure you locate the ‘garden’ in a relatively level space that is situated away from trees. You don’t want the pond to be too close to tall trees, as leaves that scatter over the pond can foul the water.

Locating the Pond

A larger pond can better withstand temperature fluctuations and extremes than smaller-designed ponds. The typical in-ground water garden that contains fish usually holds from 1,800 to 7,600 litres of water. Contrary to popular belief, pond depths only need to be 60 to 76 centimetres to overwinter fish.

The Most Essential Accessory

You will soon discover if you choose to construct a pond that the liner is an essential part of the construction. You can buy a preformed liner made of fibreglass in a variety of sizes and shapes. Place the liner into the pond’s hole and fill in dirt around the liner. You can also excavate a pond into the desired shape and place a flexible liner.

construct a pond that the liner

An EPDM rubber sheet that is approximately 45mm thick is rather expensive. However, the liner also offers about a 50-year life and therefore is a good value. Whatever you choose for a liner, remember to account for the pond’s sides and any portion that you want to be buried beneath the edging.

The Pond’s Shape

When it comes to picking the shape of a pond, most water gardeners prefer an oval shape to a rectangular configuration. Most people find the oval shape to be more aesthetically pleasing. For a typical pond, dig a hole about 76 centimetres deep, leaving about a 60cm ledge for bog plants. Slope the pond slightly from the back to the front to permit decayed or submerged material to move to one end. Then cover the bottom of the pond with about 2.5cm of sand or some other soft material to avoid any sharp object or rock from puncturing the liner.

Pond’s Shape

Filling the Pond with Water

When applying the liner, lay it in the sun with the black side up in order to warm it. After an hour, transport the liner into the pond’s hole and then anchor each of the edges with rocks or heavy stones. Start filling the pond and liner with water, permitting the liner to gradually fall into the hole. Once the pond has been filled, trim the excess of the liner and edge the water garden with soil or rocks.

If the water originates from a chlorinated source, let it sit for two days before adding the water plants. Inoculate your new water garden with about four litres of natural pond water. Doing so will supply the chlorinated water with the needed organisms and bacteria to aid in the cycling of pond nutrients.

Filling the Pond with Water

Water Garden Flora and Fauna

A self-sustaining and healthy pond is made up of a mix of animals, plants, and bacteria, including the following:

  • Water lilies are used to prevent excessive algal growth and to serve as a shade for the surface
  • Submerged plants are used to provide a natural habitat for the fish and oxygenate the water supply
  • Snails are used to break down organic contents and recycle pond nutrients
  • Fish are kept in the pond to eat insect larvae and clear the water
  • Bacteria are used to recycle nutrients and detoxify the ammonium nitrogen in the pond

Filling the Pond with Water

Planting the Pond’s Plants and Feeding the Fish

Plant water garden plants in containers that are at least 15 centimetres deep and have perforations in the sides. Use regular garden soil, and cover the container’s surface with gravel in order to contain the soil. Use a sufficient quantity of plants to cover around 75% of the surface with the plants’ leaves. For example, placing one water lily per four and a half metres supplies around the proper amount of cover.

Set water lilies in the deeper part of the pond and bog plants along the ledge. Hardy lilies usually can overwinter in a pond in cold climates. To ensure the survival of the bog plants, move them to the deeper part of the pond for the winter months.

Don’t introduce any fish until the plants begin to grow. The bacteria that coverts harmful ammonium nitrogen from fish waste into nitrate nitrogen (which is relatively harmless) is gradually established in a pond. Therefore, you want to wait to add fish for a while after you include the plants.

Once you do include the fish, feed them only once a day or as much as they can consume during five minutes of feeding. Fish usually cease feeding when the water becomes cold. The fish are able to survive for weeks on end without additional sustenance, provided the pond is teeming with organisms and life.

Pet food stores sell pond fish food, such as ‘sinking’ pellets. Use the pellets, especially if you own a cat, as the food keeps the fish from coming to a pond’s surface whenever a visitor approaches.

Once you fill the pond, you may notice that algal growth looks excessive. However, don’t be concerned. The growth normally subsides once the water lilies are added and start shading the surface. Therefore, you do not need to drain the pond and refill it, as doing so will only cause the algae to surface again.

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