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Talkback: Building a pond

just the article i want to read about,could you give me some ideas how i could create a rectangle pond..should i do a concrete one or liner,the reason for this is i have managed to buy some land at the side of my property and im going to put up a large pergola and i wish to put in another pond but i was hoping size wise::::about 5ft long and pos 1ft wide depth prob 2ft with some shelf areas in pond...i just wanted it to look long and elegant im then gonna put lots of grasses etc in and around unsure how to go about this as i back onto woods and there are very large oak trees rather close and im worried about there roots damageing the pond if i do a liner and if concrete im worried about movement and the concrete you know anywhere i could get a plastic one made up with my own measurements..


  • Very wise. My concrete pond, put in in 2008, by professionals, leaked last year. It was repaired by the people who put it in and is now leaking again. As for wildlife it has been very successful with many frogs and newts. I am now wondering what to do as the water level is very low!
  • Reply to Sarah's Pondlife
    Sarah, fibreglass inserts are probably the toughest and easiest option. Not sure whether you can find one the right shape though, most are sculpted into kidney shapes to make them look more natural. You could always try and make a frame using wooden sleepers, then the butyl liner. The inside of the pond need not be so right-angular, since the wooden frame would give the architectural effect you are after.
  • I built a pond in my terraced house garden, probably a bit smaller than that in the article, but it is square and I used a pond liner. I achieved the shape by simply folding over the edges like if you were wrapping a present, only the edges are on the inside. as long as all of the the liner reaches above the water line it doesn't matter how many folds and creases you have, it all flattens out when you put the water in, you can hardly make them out now the pond is fully established. I used sharp sand to ensure the liner doesn't get punctured, make the sand a little wet so you can paste it to the sides of where your pond liner will go. I also suggest you put a couple of shelves in, 5-7 inches deep for border plants and 2-4 inches deep for birds to bathe and drink from.
    Our pond is now 3 years old, and although we have koi and gold fish, there are also a large number of invertabrates living in the water, sheltering between the plants.
    We have included a water fall in the pond, and the lillies dont seem to mind, but no fountain, I think that detracts from the natural look.
  • In a previous house our pond was created using a clay and sand base, with concrete walls. I'd like to do the same again, but need advice. The lilies were able to grow naturally without the need for pots, but there was an annual task of clearing out the bottom of tangled vegetation and mulch. The clay base made the job difficult and you'd often loose a welly in the process. Overall I liked the design as it encouraged newts, water boatmen and all manner of other pond wildlife to get established naturally - and fish had a plentiful supply of worms. I preferred it to using a plastic liner as the ecology seemed very balanced. Due to the level of mulch, the fountain had to be strong and the filter cleaned regularly. Now to my question, instead of running a mains powered pump, I would like a solar water fountain but I don't know if it is strong enough to pump in this type of pond ie one with a lot of mulch?
  • Reply to David
    I'm afraid I'm not going to be much help advising you on pumps. All I can suggest is that you somehow rig the intake of the pump near to the surface so that the mulch, as you describe it, has some chance of settling to the bottom of the pond away from the machinery. Good luck.
  • I have a friend whose landlord is getting rid of their wildlife pond (some past tenant put it in). It is a nasty black rigid thing but full of newts, frogs and invertebrates. I am just setting up a wildlife pond - what would be the best method of moving as much water and life as possible a mile or so down the road?
  • Reply to Pipsissiwa
    I can only suggest you put bucketloads of water into the back of the car and drive slowly. Otherwise load them into a wheelbarrow and push.
  • I am currently planning a 10m x 5m wildlife pond. I have a spring which is currently flowing straight out onto my site and the site is sloped quite steeply so it seems perfect. But choice of liners is a difficult one. Some seem from my research to be susceptible to UV damage. I plan to hunt around for as much old carpet as possible to line beneath my liner (the country must be full of old carpet) and i read recently that old silage plastic (which farmers must pay to get collected) will cushion it also. I love when recycling helps both parties!!
  • Fiberglass bowls are definitely more durable but a butyl lined pond looks more natural.
    Owner Builder
  • I build a above the ground pond. We had a old wishing well that never worked. We took out the water and the container of the water along with the pump, filter and pond plants. We then brought a plastic pond from the local garden center. We then filled it with new water and the pond plants. Lastly we got 4 fish. look on the wildlife blog to find out what happened but other than that it is a big success
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