A pond can be a very appealing feature in any garden. Whether it is big or small, a well-kept water feature offers a lot: the relaxing tinkling of a fountain or fall, a focal point with a surface that reflects your plants wonderfully, a home for frogs and a feeding spot and watering hole for birds and other wildlife.
Building your own pond might seem like a task for a professional landscape gardener, but in fact you can do it yourself in the space of a weekend. With our quick and eay guide, you'll be landscaping like the Groundforce tem in no time!
Caring for your pond
Late autumn and early winter is the time to clear debris from your pond and change its water, so that it’s healthy when nature comes back to life in the spring.
Dirty water is an absolute no-no. It prevents aquatic plants growing, can cause distress or kill your pond’s fish and will repel amphibians like newts and frogs (who should be welcomed because they eat slugs and snails).
Around April, turn your attention to the pond’s plant life, removing weeds and dead and unhealthy plants from the edge and thin out the healthy ones to encourage growth. But remember that the plants must be abundant enough to shade the pond’s surface from direct sunlight. Water forget-me-nots, irises and marsh marigolds are classic marginal plants for the damp, boggy parts around the pond.
Ensure some of the plants in the pond are oxygenators – types that live almost completely under water, producing oxygen to keep water healthy. Curly water thyme and parrot's feather are widely available and attractive. Be careful when choosing. Some aquatic plants are highly invasive when they escape from the garden, clogging up rivers and streams.
Water lilies in their many varieties and water hawthorn are both lovely and provide shade for the pond’s surface.
Rising temperatures and the introduction of nutrients with the first fish feeds of the year both encourage your pond’s worst enemy: algae. It can be long and stringy, short and furry, or in a web. Too much is ugly and smelly. So make sure your pump’s filter is clean and the pond is well planted so that the flora will take the nutrients that the algae needs to thrive. Don’t worry about a little algae. It gives a natural appearance to a pond and attracts insects that fish can feed on.