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All About Water Gardening  

Peaceful, refreshing, serene...the sound of water has the power to destress, bring relaxation and calm.

Enjoy both the calming sounds and the beautiful sight of a water feature that fits your unique setting. Water features are today's hottest trend in landscaping. They are environmentally friendly and completely customized to be installed anywhere. Relax alongside a water garden and experience a tranquility that transcends today's stressful world.

Many people think that water gardening is difficult. Water gardens look so exotic. But nothing could be further from the truth: We would recommend water gardening to a rank beginner, although we might think twice before suggesting growing something as common as hybrid tea roses.

Ponds, waterfalls, fountains, and container water gardens all add a rich dimension to your landscape, whether as the focal point the rest of the yard is designed around, or a beautiful way to add the soothing sounds of moving water to your outdoor living environment.

Few things can add to a backyard's ambiance like a water feature. From a simple pond to an elaborate waterfall, water features offer beauty, tranquility, and even a boost to wildlife and the environment. The frogs will love you for building them a water hole to play in and you will love the entertainment you get from watching them!


Garden Ponds

First Things First: Choose A Location

An ideal location in your landscape for a pond/waterfall is near a patio, where you can enjoy its soothing sounds. However, almost any location is acceptable. Just make sure that your pond can be viewed and heard by you and your guests from sitting aeas and other viewpoints. Look for an area that offers a slope as slopes are perfect for use as a backdrop and foundation in constructing your waterfall.

Before getting started with the design of your pond you will need to determine where you want to locate it. The location and setting will help you in determining what size to build it. Fit the pond to the setting. Don't build Lake Erie in a backyard with only a small plot to work within, and don't build a bucket sized pond in the middle of a field. Again, fit the pond to the setting.

TIP: A little good advice from your local water gardening expert can go a long way.

If you know you are a Do-It-Yourselfer and have determined what type of pond you want and where you will locate it, and would like to skip straight to the step-by-step instructions for building a pond click here.

NOTE: If you have even the slightest suspiscion that you will be digging near buried cables make sure to call your local utility companies to have the location of these cables marked.

The Main Ingredients of a Garden Pond - You need a pond or container, water, aquatic snails, fish, and plants. If you choose to incorporate a fountain or waterfall you will need a pump, tubing and a source for electricity. Creating a pond or any type of water feature doesn't take much and even the smallest ones will draw your guests and children to peer into its mystery. Water gardens are simply irresistible!

Choose a Pond Type - There are two types of garden ponds. Water gardens are either still or active. Fountains and waterfalls add sparkle and splash to a garden, being noisy and full of flash. Some fountains or waterfalls don't disturb the water too much, and thus many plants will perform fine if the splashing isn't too disruptive, or if they are located away from the fountain. Some aquatic plants prefer calm water, with the exception of watercress, which seems to prefer moving water.


Free Style (Liner) or Preformed Mold? You will need to decide whether to use a preformed mold or a flexible liner to contain the body of water in your pond.

Preformed. In their simplest form, a water feature may consist of an easily installed, inexpensive 'preformed' pond mold. Preformed ponds are manufactured from rigid black plastic or fiberglass in many sizes and shapes.

Most preformed ponds are one-piece, but some of the larger ones come in sections that are assembled on site. Many preformed molds come in pond kits which include all of the equipment you will need to build your pond.

If you would like to give the appearance of an even larger pond but still stick with the simplicity of preformed units, consider placing two of them side by side and then concealing the intersection with a stone or wood bridge.

Preformed waterfalls and streams are also available for combining with the pond.

NOTE: We will not be providing intructions here for building a pond using a preformed liner or pond kit as there will be step by step instructions provided with the kit. However, if you decide to go with a kit, you should review all of the information provided here as some of it may apply.

Using a Flexible Liner - Lined ponds consist of an excavated hole that is covered with a special pond liner, and can be made in pretty much any size and shape. Lined ponds offer a lot more flexibility in design, both for the pond and any stream beds or waterfalls you would like to incorporate, and are also more suitable for fish and more extensive underwater plantings. Using a flexible liner allows you to use your own creative ability to design the pond that you want and see in your minds eye. So, if you would like to explore the possibility of building your own pond using a flexible liner you can find step-by-step instructions here.


Adding a Waterfall, Fountain, & Lighting

Waterfalls can be simple or elaborate, designed to empty into a single pool or pond of water, originating from a flowing stream and falling through several tiers, or cascading dramatically from many feet above the ground. Step-by-step instructions for building a waterfall for your pond can be found here.
Fountains of all shapes, sizes and themes may be self-contained or installed in your pond to add sparkle, flash, and noise in your outdoor living environment.
Lighting - Enhance the nightime exprience of your pond with lighting. Incorporate underwater lighting for an amazing and dramatic effect. Use suttle lighting effects around the perimeter of your pond to illuminate plants and rocks. Floating lights are quite the novelty!
Planting Your Water Garden - Growing plants in your water garden is easy and there are only a few simple steps you must follow.
Fish? Find information about the various types of fish for your water garden and how to raise and care for them here.


Pond Maintenance

Container Water Gardening


Wetland Gardens

From this

To this!

Wetland Gardens - If you have a naturally occurring wet spot in your yard, or a low swale or drainageway with heavy clay soils, you can easily and inexpensively turn this liability into a wetland paradise asset! Even if you don't have a naturally wet spot, you can establish an area in your yard to grow many of the beautiful plants associated with wetlands. Information on wetland gardens can be found here.


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