How to build your own garden pond
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A garden pond adds new dimensions to any garden.
As well as providing a tranquil spot to sit and relax on
a hot summer's day, it attracts a whole range of
wildlife to your garden such as frogs, newts, and
water birds and almost inevitably gives you a mini
nature reserve. It also opens up new plant growing
opportunities both in the water and at its edges.

Choosing the right location, shape and size of
garden pond.

An ideal spot for a garden pond is in an open area
with plenty of sunshine, but not too exposed to the
wind and it is best not to locate it directly under trees
to avoid accumulating soggy leaf mould every
autumn. You should aim for as large a size as you
can manage and the location will comfortably
support, as larger ponds will gave a greater impact and are easier to clean and maintain
than smaller ponds and are less prone to green water. The shape should be gently curving
to blend with the environment and it is best to avoid narrow necks of water if possible. The
ideal depth for a garden pond is around 2 feet deep, any shallower and it will be prone to
drying in the summer and if much deeper it will accumulate mud in its base.

What lining material to use

Flexible liners are generally the best materials to use and are usually made of either butyl
or PVC. If working to a lower budget then polythene can be used but this is thinner and
generally won't last longer than 3 years before it needs to be replaced.

Preparing the hole

You should mark out the area to be excavated with a trail of sand or an old hosepipe and
the best months for pond making are April and May, so you should start digging around
March. The pond base should be dug to around a 3 feet depth in its centre and you should
make arrangement for disposing or using the surprisingly large amounts of material which
will result! It is a good idea to consider preparing a shelf around the edge of the pond, in
preparation for plants that prefer to grow in shallow water and otherwise the sides should
slope at around 45 degrees. It is also advisable to protect the liner with a layer of fibreglass
matting or sand in the base of the hole.

Laying the liner and filling the pond

Make sure the liner is large enough and then stretch it over the hole and hold the edges
down with some heavy stones and check that it overlaps an even amount all around the
pond and even out any wrinkles. Now you can start to fill it with water. Lay a hosepipe on the
liner and run the water in, this will push the liner flat against the soil and again look out for
wrinkles and smooth them out. Fill the hole to the brim.

Edging the pond

Usually the best way to edge a pond is by laying flagstones and tucking the liner under
them, they should be laid so that they overlap the edge by about 2 inches. Fine soil or sand
can be used to bed these down for a level finish. It is best to avoid concreting them in or
repairs can be difficult. With the hard work done you should take a well earned rest and
admire your new garden pond. Some restraint is also in order however as it will take about
a fortnight to settle in and for the water to clear of unhealthy chemicals.

Then it is time to start planning to decorate it with water plants of your choice and for you
local wildlife to discover it and hopefully take it up as their new residence.

Garden pond or any open stretch of water can obviously present a danger to small children.
Appropriate safety measures should be taken if small children are likely to be around the
pond.

Now that a new range of plants are at your disposal I will discuss these in detail in an
upcoming article, as well as some of the fish that you may wish to introduce.


John McGuire is an active gardener and manages his own smallholding with extensive
gardens and keeps a range of farm animals. He is also an internet marketer and runs his
own gardening information and products website. http://www.TheGardenLovers.com

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How to build your own garden pond
: Landscaping
By: John Mcguire  
How to build your own garden pond
How to build your own garden pond