Showing posts with label preformed ponds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label preformed ponds. Show all posts

Friday, May 07, 2010

Ponds on Deck

How do I make a pond on my deck/porch?
My back deck has a gate and lately I've been thinking about putting a pond back there for my turtles.
I have several questions so I'm hoping someone can help me out a little . . .

I've been thinking a lot about the container:
Maybe I'll get an old metal wash tub. Or I could get a barrel, cut it in half and build a wooden frame for it. Or possibly just buy a preformed pond from Home Depot and use it.
The only thing I know for sure is that I want my pond to be unique.

I've also been thinking about shade, would plants in and around it be enough?

And can this only be a summer thing? Or is it possible for the turtles to adapt when it starts to get cold again?

Any info/ideas would help me.
-Thanks so much!!!


There are several ways you can have your pond. I would advise against any preformed one from any big box stores. They are flimsy, crack and break in a season.
Rubbermaid makes horse drinking troughs in several sizes. They run maybe $40.00 and hold up forever. You can have a pond in anything that holds water.
You could cut a hole in your deck, put a base underneath the pond and have your pond even with the deck, or maybe 6" above it.
Plants around it would be fine, but I would also add aquatic plants in pots in the water for additional shade.
It would depend on where you live if you have to take it down in the winter. If the pond would freeze solid, yes, the water would have to come out and everything in the pond as well. Heaters work, but not well enough if the pond is above ground and the weather is below freezing for days/weeks on end.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Liner damage

Always cover your liner with rocks or water. Liner exposed to the sun can incur damage quickly. Rubber or EPDM liner lasts much longer. Exposed plastic liner, either flexible or a preformed shell will crack in a short time and it cannot be repaired.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Building a waterfall

Building a Waterfall

Building a waterfall is either simple or difficult depending on the point of view of the builder. We want them to look natural, like they just started happening in the rocks of our gardens, never mind that we had to buy the rocks because we live where no rock has ever been found like New Orleans where I live.

The easiest way to have a waterfall is to use a weir. A weir is a box that collect water that the pump has pumped into it. One side of the box is lower than the rest and has a lip on it so water will go over it.
These can be effective when building a waterfall. Simply elevate them above your pond, usually positioning them level on the dirt you have dug out to make your pond, put tubing from your pump in the weir.When the weir fills up, a sheet of water will fall over the weir and into your pond. You can hide the weir with rocks so no one can see the plastic box. Also, if you have a biofilter, you can put it in the weir. As an aside, if you do have a biofilter and use lava rocks in it, put them in several mesh bags, not just one. It takes several strong men to lift just one bag out, so use at least three. I usually float some hyacinths or other floating plants in the weir to further camouflage the plastic box.

Another, and my favorite way, is to start with a semi level surface, slightly raised in the back, starting at the same level as your pond. From there build the waterfall using the same kind of rocks you used in your pond construction. Start with large, flat and thin rocks. You can’t build a waterfall with round rocks or little ones either. After you put the first large rock down, run a hose over it to make sure the water flows into the pond. If it does not, shim up the back of the rock. If you don’t start on a slight angle, water will fall off the back and drain your pond dry in a few hours. Next, stack two or three thick and chunky rocks on each end of the bottom rock. Those rocks can be as much as 5 or 6” thick. Make sure they are flat on two sides because you are going to build the rest of your waterfall on top of them. If you have two large flat rocks on the ground level, you need more chunky rocks to rest the second level on.

Next place the second level of flat, thin and large rocks on the chunks. Again run water over to make sure the flow is going in the pond and not over the edge. Continue making levels until you like your waterfall or run out of rocks. Make your waterfall as wide as you wish, remembering that you may need more than one pump.

I have found that the easiest way for me to build the falls is for me to be in the water and have a couple of strong helpers placing rocks for me.

The back of the falls is equally important. Shimming must be done to keep the angle toward the pond and proper placement of rocks is most important to ensure stability of the falls.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Repairing a preformed pond

Usually when a preformed pond springs a leak, it is where the pond has ledges. We tend to step on the ledge when we get in the pond and because we have not seated it properly in the ground (almost an impossibility), it cracks. Now what?
I know of no way to patch a preformed hard plastic pond. I have heard of folks using Bondo, but have not seen it first hand. Because they are impossible to patch and crack so readily, I recommend against using them. If you wish to use a preformed pond, go to a feed store and buy a horse feeding trough. Rubbermaid makes them, they have a flat bottom, no ledges, are virtually indestructible and are much much cheaper than the preformed pond you find at the big box store.