Ideas - How a Fish Pond Might Look Like, Pictures & Forum
This page was created to help with ideas on building and setting up ponds. In case you need help you're welcome to ask us at the bottom of this page! Sharing experiences is welcome too!
To me, designing that perfect pond is no different to designing that perfect aquarium; everything is just on a larger scale. With a pond the world really is your oyster, there are so many options available to you. The initial planning stage is probably more important than with an aquarium, equipment may have to be incorporated into the build, landscaping features may also have to be included as well. If you are stuck for ideas there are plenty of websites on the internet offering advice, and hopefully this article will give you a few ideas also.
The first thing to be considered with your design is how will the pond blend in with they area that you have put aside for it. It might be that you will look at the site, and then decide to add on some decorative borders around the pond. Always take out a sketchpad with you and start sketching what type of pond you are trying to create, measure the area to make sure that your design will actually fit the space.
What shape of pond should I have? This is purely your choice, rectangular ponds are slightly easier to create, kidney shaped ponds may be more pleasing to the eye. Do you wish to have the water surface level with the ground or, as I created in my garden, build a raised pond with decorative brick work?
One important feature that must not be missed in the design stage is to incorporate shelving on the pond sides if you wish to add marginal plants.
There are some general guidelines that should be followed when deciding on the site of your pond:-
- If you are planting your pond, they will need sunlight to grow, give them an area where the sun can easily reach the water.
- Try to avoid placing the pond too close to trees, this could cause problems in the future with leaves spoiling the water as they land in it and start to decay.
- Ponds need the water topping up on a regular basis, make sure you have an adequate water supply for this purpose.
- If you are running electrical equipment, consider the costing of running the cables to a power point etc.
- Make sure there are no hidden pipes underground where you wish to dig out for the pond.
- The most important rule is that it must be safe for any visitors, especially children- they may not realize the risks of falling in!
Once the pond is built and filled with water you will have to add your filtration system, you can even have fun with this. On the outlet pie, run it to the other end of the pond and add a waterfall. Not only will this look pleasing to the eye but it will add vital oxygen to the water, the fish will thank you for it. I have found that the best way to make your waterfall look natural is to place it running through a built up area that is full of plant life. For this purpose you can use a plastic waterfall or create one your self from pond liner, it makes no difference. To further extend the natural look run the turf around the pond right to the edges, add a couple of boggy areas where reeds can grow. This is easy to build into the plan, excavate the soil down to 6 inches, place some excess pond liner down and then replace the soil. A perfect boggy area in minutes!
If you wish for a more formal edging to the pond, lay slabs around the edges and behind them make some planting areas for bring some colour to the borders. By using slabs for the edging, walkways can be created that lead away from your pond, terrace these over with planted archways and you have an idealistic setting for strolling around your garden in the evenings.
Planting your pond is also great fun, there are many species of plants that can be used, and these are very simple to plant out using the aquatic baskets with purpose made compost. Surprisingly many plants that are used in the aquarium can also be used in ponds. Ludwigea, Vallisneria, Cabomba, Anacharis, to name a few. As mentioned earlier, on the pond shelving your marginal plants will soon grow to soften the edges of the pond as they grow up and outwards, looking like they belong there. Lilies growing up in the deepest part of the pond will produce the most amazing flowers with a skirt of floating leaves to provide shady areas for your fish. Try to include oxygenating plants in the pond, these will be beneficial as well as looking good, your fish will benefit from adding these in the long term.
Pond fountains are extremely popular with most people; they will add a focal point to your pond, especially if some form of integral lighting is included. Prices for fountains can range from 25 pounds (50 dollars), right up to 1000 pounds (2000 dollars). There is always one that suits every body’s pockets, have a look around and you could find a bargain. Try to invest in a fountain size that complements your pond rather than one that overshadows it by being too large. If your pond is a large pond then it is feasible for a large three tier fountain to look the part but for small ponds the compact fountains that work from a single pump are ideal. Even with the smaller fountains there are several pump heads that can be used for different water patterns to spray out of the top.
One type of pond that has always intrigued me is the Japanese design of Koi ponds with decking walkways, pagodas over the top of the bond and the wooden bridges for strolling over the pond itself. I incorporated some of this design in my own pond, by adding a pergola over the raised brickwork sides and adding wooden coping to the bricks, the effect was quite stunning. Into the pergola I included solar spotlights for highlighting certain areas of the pond in the evening and decorated with twisting ornamental grape vines. Subtle lighting was added to the planting areas and walkways; many a relaxing evening was spent sat at the side of the pond.
Whether your pond is large or small there are many designs that you can use, search the internet or books for pictures, these will give you basic ideas that will expand as you start to build up your pond area.