Water features and ponds can be very pleasant additions to your garden and they can set your home apart from the rest of the properties in the neighbourhood.
If you can create a focal point in your garden that you enjoy and love, the chances are that it will therefore add value to your home.
Ponds are not just for Christmas though, and it is worth remembering that a neglected water feature or pond can be a real eyesore before you make the commitment and install one. Maintaining your pond is not a huge job but it is something that you will need to keep on top of if you are to keep it looking nice.
Building a Pond Yourself
Digging your own pond has plenty of advantages, you can dig it exactly how you want it, you can save a whole load of money and you can get some exercise and maybe even a tan in the process.
Any good garden centre should stock the floppy felt that you can then lay yourself enabling you to line your pond with a watertight covering; alternatively you can purchase the pre-made moulds for a bit extra.
Then all you need is some flat bottomed rocks to cover the meeting of your ponds lip and your lawn and the first stage is done, easy as that. Now get your bucket or hose and start filling! For more tips about “Building a Simple Water Features”, see Simple Water Features
Getting a Pond Built For You
Hard labour and digging is not everybody’s cup of tea, if this is the case you can, of course, pay somebody to do it for you.
As is always the case with hiring help, recommendation is the best way of selecting your workers. If you are struggling though, the yellow pages will have an extensive list of firms ready to work.
When hiring somebody to do the work, you should:
- Get a few quotes before committing to one firm
- Have drawings ready to show them what you are after, even if it is just a rough sketch on the back of a notepad
- Work closely with the hired help, don’t be afraid to tell them exactly what you want and if they start doing something you were not expecting, tell them right away before it is too late.
Stocking Your Pond
Things you will need to get from your local garden centre when stocking your pond include the following:
- Pond Life, from seaweed to lilli pads
- Herbicide and pesticide tablets
- Any ornamental decorative pieces
- Ultraviolet bacteria killer
- Circulation pump
- Filtration unit
Maintaining your pond is not overly difficult, especially if you do purchase a filtration pump and ultraviolet light system. The pumps start at around £20 and the full bacteria killing system will set you back around about £100.
They are however, very effective and prove to be a good investment as they help the maintenance to be as hassle free as possible. They do a much more efficient job than the tablets and involve less effort from you.
The only thing you must be wary of with these mains powered systems is that they are properly and safely installed as water and electricity do not mix well. Do not do it yourself if you are unsure of what you are doing.
If you are worried that your pond is excessively murky and you fear that your fish may be struggling to breathe, bring a sample of your pond water into your garden centre and they should be happy to give you advice. For more tips about “Maintenance”, see Pond Maintenance
Making the most of your pond
One of the great things about ponds is that you can constantly add things to them to make them even more striking and make them evolve over time into something that is truly stunning.
- Wildlife will naturally gravitate towards your pond and so you should embrace this, small shady rock gardens can be a beautiful haven for frogs.
- Surround your pond with beautiful flowers, it will have a similar effect to a nice border or frame complimenting a work of art.
- Add to your collection of fish over time, whilst the usual selection of goldfish is great, your pond will really come to life with a little variation.
- Add to your collection of plantation over time also, but be sure to watch out for mould or disease, as both can be very destructive to the rest of the stock.
- Consider a small water feature, even something as simple as pumped water trickling down some rocks at the side of your pond will give your pond a natural feel and distract from the man made and purpose built, reality.
Both as a feature to enjoy and an investment then, a pond can be a great addition to your garden and your home.
For as little as £400, and some hard work, you can install a beautiful, relatively low maintenance, pond that can bring plenty of joy to you and your family. And, in the long-run, add as much as four times that initial installation figure to the value of your home!