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Pond Basics


  • Where in the landscape do you want your pond? Tucked away or as a focal point?
  • Do you have Full Sun, Partial Sun or Shade? At least 6 hours of sunlight is needed for a Water Lily.
  • Is there runoff where you wish to place your pond?
  • Is it possible to dig down at least 18"-24"? Fish need it to be at least this deep for optimum health.
  • Do you have access to electricity at your proposed site?

Basics Needed to Set Up Your Pond:

  • Pond Liner: either rigid or flexible. When purchasing a flexible liner, measure down the sides, across the bottom and up the other side, and add on foot the each side for overlap.
  • Pumps need to be running for a filter and possibly a waterfall, fountain or spitter. Pumps for a waterfall need 100-150 gallons per hour per inch of waterfall width. (For example: a 10" wide waterfall – 100 x 10" = 1,000 gallons per hour coverage.)
  • Filters are available in mechanical (traps particles in material for removal during cleaning) and Biological (uses beneficial bacteria to feed on impurities and nutrients in the pond water). A mechanical filter should have half the volume of the pond pumped through it in an hour. Also, filters can be underwater or above ground.

Pond Flora and Fauna:

  • Plants come in four types: Underwater, Floating, Surface and Marginal. Underwater plants are primarily oxygenating plants.
  • Oxygenating plants need to be stocked one bunch per two square feet of surface coverage.
  • Floating plants and surface plants help to achieve the 40-60% of needed surface coverage.
  • Marginal plants come in a wide variety and help to create an atmosphere, as well as taking nutrients out of the pond.
  • Many people stock their ponds with fish, tadpoles, and snails. All will bring many hours of enjoyment to the pond.
  • Note: tadpoles and snails are not needed for healthy pond, but are always welcome!