When digging your own pond, there are some choices to make. Very small ponds can use a fibreglass shell for the lining – larger ponds need a lining made from PVC, Butyl or more flexible modern butyl substitutes. Flexible pond linings can range from a few pounds to hundreds of pounds, so do your calculations right – but you must leave extra room for the pond walls (they are not two-dimensional!) and some left over at the edge, which you will need to anchor with stones as you fill the pond.
What kind of wildlife would you like in your pond? If you are planning to take on fish, you must make sure that you have an appropriate habitat and food for them. Goldfish will need feeding in the summer months. Consult the appropriate guide for the fish you choose. A wildlife pond will do better without fish which eat the young tadpoles, insect larvae and pond plants.
It’s great to surround a pond with “marginal plants” like flowers and grasses. For colourful effects, try Caltha Palustris or Purple loosestrife . Pond plants are essential as they help oxygenate the water.
Ponds need some maintenance – for example you should clear out all dead leaves and other debris in time for winter, and you should have a pump and filter if you keep fish.
Planning your Pond
Your garden is unique, and it’s important to look at factors such as ideal focal points, lowest point of the garden and light and shade, before planning its location. For example if you would like to encourage wildlife, the pond will need shallow ledges and an easy approach from ground level . Shade can be useful in reducing blue green algae and this can be provided by existing buildings, walls, or planting. In addition to planting around the pond, we make sure that you have the right plants in the pond, whether it’s Irises, water lilies, marsh marigold and purple loosestrife: native species are preferred!.
When the pond and the surrounding area has been properly designed, we start digging! This looks easy, but can be back-breaking work – we always appreciate a steady supply of tea! We normally make sure that the pond has a series of levels, which can be habitats for different plants and animals. Once the hole is deep and wide enough for your pond, we will lay a protective fleece lining to prevent puncture from stones and roots. This is then lined usually with a flexible long lasting UV resistant liner.. When the lining is in, we landscape the pond with rocks, earth, and plants to make it a natural habitat for the wildlife who will call it home.
This is the easy bit – and quite often once we’ve done the initial preparation and started filling the pond, we often find that the wildlife starts moving in almost straight away – which means that we get to enjoy it a little before we leave you in peace!
Enjoying the pond
Like the rest of your garden, a pond can look very different at different times of year. If you have a wildlife pond, look out for lots of Dragonflies, Pond skaters and Diving beetles in the summer, and of course frogspawn and tadpoles in the spring. Newts and Grass snakes are also regular visitors to some of our ponds!
And if you do need a bit of professional help – we’re a phone call away! Get in touch on 01993 878178 / 07802 720 652 or by email us.
If you would like to see more examples and information, please visit our ponds page.