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Water Features for the Garden

Many homeowners dream of having a water feature in their garden; this can be a fountain, pond, waterfall, or even a stream.  No matter the type of feature, water is a beautiful and striking addition to any garden.  There are a number of DIY water feature kits on the market to choose from, as well as any number of other DIY water feature ideas to create from scratch.  The DIY water feature can range from a very simple project to a very elaborate scheme.  No matter their simplicity or their extravagance, DIY water features can be quite soothing and eye-catching, especially when they have some form of running water.  DIY water features can be relatively inexpensive and require just a bit of elbow grease or they can be quite expensive and require a lot more sweat equity.  Below are two examples of DIY water features that are both practical and intermediate in difficulty.  They do take a bit of elbow grease, but will produce a water feature that will be the envy of the neighbours.

The Soothing Garden Pond

Materials Needed

  • Flagstone
  • Plants
  • Water
  • Plastic Liner
  • Water Pump Kit
  • Blue Tumbled Glass

Tools Needed

  • Shovel
  • Measuring Tape
  • Garden Hose

Step 1:  Dig the Hole
It is always important to check to see if there are power lines or pipes located in the area before digging.  The hole should be dug to the size of the desired pond.

Step 2:  Lay the Plastic Liner
The plastic liner should be laid in the hole and it should extend up and around the sides.  The plastic liner should also extend the surrounding area to make sure the water will stay in the pond.  This will prevent the water from seeping into the ground.

Step 3:  Lay the Flagstone
Flagstone or some other type of rock can be used to lay over the liner that surrounds the hole.  The bottom of the hole as well as any exposed liner should be covered with stone to hold the liner down.  Trim away any liner that may be left exposed.

Step 4:  Adding a Fountain
This is a step which can involve creatively adding a water fountain feature or by the creative arrangement of the stones surrounding the pond.  At one end of the pond stones can be stacked in a sloping mound.  Tubing can be run underneath with a pump placed inside the pond that attaches to the tubing.  Not only does this feature add interest to the pond it will also keep the water moving, which helps to keep the pond healthy.

Step 5:  Filling the Pond with Water
At this point everything should be in place.  Before filling with water make sure all remaining gaps are filled with small stones.  With the goal of completely hiding the plastic liner, more stones can be added around the inside wall of the pond.

Step 6:  Adding Plants and Rocks
Creating a tropical oasis can be accomplished by adding aquatic plants to the pond.  Tumbled blue glass rocks can be added at the bottom to create a shimmering effect.

Stock Tank Container Pond

Materials Needed

  • Stock Tank
  • Decomposed Granite or Pavers
  • Water
  • Plants
  • Plastic Pots
  • Pea Gravel
  • Filtered Bubbler Pump
  • Stones

Tools Needed

  • Shovel
  • Measuring Tape
  • Garden Hose

Step 1 
Purchase stock tank.

Step 2 
Measure and dig an area a few feet larger than the stock tank to the depth of about three inches.  Fill in with a decomposed granite or paver base and pat it down and make sure it is level.

Step 3 
Fill the tank with clean water from the garden hose.  Let the water sit in the tank for three or four days before adding plants so any chlorine from the water can evaporate.

Step 4
Choose three types of plants for the stock tank pond.  They should include oxygenators (submerged plants), marginals (water's edge plants), and deep-water aquatics (plants that sit on the bottom, but have leaves on the surface).  Put the plants in a bucket of water once home, or plant them immediately.  Use a few old plastic pots filled with clean pea gravel, placing the stems of the oxygenator plants about an inch into the pea gravel.  Place these potted oxygenator plants on the bottom of the tank.  The marginal plants will need to be placed on platforms such as stack stones, bricks, etc.  Water lilies are the ideal deep aquatic plants to utilise.  Place water lilies on the bottom of the pond if their leaves can reach the surface.  Otherwise, place them on stacked stones so the leaves reach the surface.  As they grow, remove the stones until the plants can be placed on the bottom of the pond and the leaves reach the surface.

Step 5
Install a Filtered Bubbler Pump.  This can be a nice addition to the pond, creating that soothing running water sound.  It will also help the water maintain its clarity, control insects, and keep plants healthy.

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