Monday, August 10, 2009

Follow the Construction of My Pond! Part One

Ok, there could be more interesting things to follow, but, this is what I happen to be doing at this very untimely moment when I'm supposed to be resting! Sometimes when opportunity knocks you just have to grab it, even if it may seem like a bad time!

After building a small pond in our front yard 9 years ago, we have always wanted to build another one in the backyard. Between sports and other activities, we just could never find the time to ever make it become a reality. So, when my son came to me and said he and his good friend would build it, I jumped at the chance!..... All I had to do was guide them through the process!

Since we had talked about this for years, I already knew approximately where I wanted to build it. When planning a pond, the site is one of the most important things to decide on.
Here's a few things to consider:

1. Its best to locate a pond away from trees since they can cause alot of extra maintenance with falling leaves and other debris into the pond, and their roots can be a challenge to dig around.

2. Locate it away from areas that you spray pesticides or fertilize. Runoff can cause major problems for your fish and water quality.

3. Proximity to a power source. If you want to incorporate a waterfall, fountain or lighting, its important to think of where your power will be coming from and locate it accordingly.

4. Location to the house is important, it's easier to maintain and feed the fish when it's closer to the house! Remember, the fish like to eat even if its raining! My front yard pond is located just outside our front door - I can feed my fish while its raining without getting wet!

5. You may also want to enjoy it from inside your house too! A pond attracts lots of wildlife that you won't want to miss! This pond will be seen from my kitchen window and most of the rooms facing our backyard.

So, with all this in mind, I located our pond under a giant Tulip Tree that is constantly dropping sap, flowers, seeds and leaves! And it's downhill from our upper lawn area! Yeah, I'm crazy and didn't follow my own advice, but we have a very shady yard with lots of trees. There's just no other place to put it. The pond in our front yard is under a Downy Shadblow which drops leaves, flowers and berries, so I'm resigned to the fact that if I want a pond, I will have lots of maintenance! We also don't use pesticides as a general rule, and will grade the soil around the pond in a way that will divert runoff from the upper lawn away from the pond.

After the area was cleared of plants, I sprayed a line with orange paint to outline the pond and stream/waterfall location. A wheel barrel is helpful to haul away the soil from the pond. We will be relocating this extra soil to several low spots in other flower beds in the yard. If building a pond and waterfall on flat ground, you will need this soil to buildup the area of the waterfall, so its best to place this soil close to the area you want to buildup.

I've got to run, they're ready to start digging!
Look for more updates & tips until our pond is complete!


Julie Magers Soulen said...

You have a wonderful son! But you already knew that right! Can't wait to see it finished.

Mom said...

Loved seeing the step by step
progress of the pond. So glad the
kids are doing it for you.