Partner with nature for a clean, attractive, and healthy pond!
A beautiful, well designed garden pond will add style and functionality
to your lawn and garden, but keeping a poorly designed small pond
clean and looking good can be quite a chore.
Those of you who are familiar with my writing know that I occasionally
get up on my soapbox about doing things in cooperation with nature
instead of fighting against her.
In fact, many years of trying it both ways have convinced me
that the natural way of building a pond results in lower installation
and maintenance costs, is easier on our fragile natural resources,
and even more fun!
I always aim for the most natural, low maintenance pond systems.
I have heard numerous horror stories of thick, "pea
soup" green ponds which quickly became nightmares for their
Drastic measures were taken to rid these ponds of the
algae problem, including extensive, sand-based filter systems
and very expensive ultraviolet light sterilizers.
I always felt those "solutions" merely treated the
symptoms instead of the causes. The UV light did indeed rid the
pond of the algae, but it also removed all the beneficial pond
organisms that actually contributed to the reduction of algae
causing the problem to quickly return, even worse than before.
After much research, I discovered a system based on cooperation
with natural systems - a system that was inherently low maintenance.
Below are several of the basic principles of this pond system,
principles that contribute to a healthy, low maintenance water
One of the most beneficial features that you can install in your
pond is a rock and gravel bottom. The millions of tiny spaces
created are readily colonized by beneficial microorganisms which
break down organic waste deposited by fish and decomposing plant
The rocks and gravel effectively function as a large biological
filter, reducing maintenance for the mechanical filter and creating
a clean, healthy pond environment.
Rocks and gravel in the pond also:
- Provide a habitat for beneficial aquatic insects and snails
- Protect the pond liner from the sun and damage from larger
- Provide a more natural look than a smooth surface
- Isn't slippery like smooth surfaces
- Will hold the pond liner securely in place
Placing aquatic plants in your pond also helps to maintain a
healthy ecosystem. Plants use the carbon dioxide and nutrients
that are produced by the various beneficial organisms living in
the gravel and in the biological filter.
Without plants, there would be an overload of nutrients in the
pond, resulting in highly toxic conditions for other pond life.
And yes, algae is indeed plant life! A small amount of algae is
normal, and even beneficial to your pond's ecosystem. We just
don't want the algae to get out of control and take over the pond.
Aquatic plants also provide:
- Beauty and character for the pond
- Oxygen for all of the pond animals
- Shade from intense sunlight
- Food for fish and insects
- Shelter for all varieties of small pond creatures
Other factors are also beneficial to the beauty and health of
a low maintenance pond ecosystem. Colorful fish provide countless
hours of relaxing entertainment while feasting on algae, mosquito
larvae, and other insects.
Although most pond owners feed a small amount of food to their
fish, they can actually feed themselves in a well-balanced pond.
It's also very important to use an efficient skimmer to remove
the larger surface debris, as well as a biological filter through
which the pond water is pumped.
In conclusion, a clean, healthy, and beautiful pond ecosystem
is based upon on interrelationship of all its parts. Each link
important for the survival of the pond as a whole.
My initial research into water features revealed a multitude
of systems and options, along with many conflicting ideas and
advice. The pond system that impressed us as the most user-friendly,
lowest maintenance, and most nature-friendly is produced by Aquascape
Designs. We've been providing these outstanding systems to satisfied
clients for three years.
We recently finished installing our own water garden installation
here at our home, and to say we're very satisfied is a huge understatement!
Enjoying the beauty and tranquility of our new pond and
waterfall has become a relaxing daily ritual for our family.