Few things in life are as relaxing and inviting as a body of water. There’s a reason people are so drawn to the beach, to lakeside destinations, and even to the pool.
Water is therapeutic, relaxing, and inspiring. If we had the option, we would naturally spend most, if not all, of our time in, near, or on water.
And yes, you can also enjoy the benefits of a body of water at home. No, you don’t have to build a pool. You can instead create a backyard oasis by building a pond.
Wondering how to build a backyard pond? It’s not as difficult or as costly as you think. You just need to research backyard pond designs, gather some supplies, and get to work. Keep reading to learn how to make a backyard pond so you can enjoy the benefits of water right at home.
Research Backyard Pond Ideas
There are many different approaches you can take when constructing a natural backyard pond. From tiny to extravagant, and from waterfalls to fountains and everything in between, you can create any type of pond you want.
First, consider your goals. Do you want fish to live in the pond? The pond will need to be large and deep enough in order to sustain a healthy population of plants and fish.
Do you want the pond to have a waterfall? If so, you may need to add additional landscaping in order to provide the elevation needed for a waterfall. Adding a waterfall to your pond is much easier to do from the beginning, rather than later down the line.
Do you want a small backyard pond, that’s easy to maintain? Or do you want a large pond that takes up the entire property? Make a list of everything you want your pond to have and be, then you can start planning and building accordingly.
How to Build a Backyard Pond
If you opt for a small, DIY pond in your backyard, you may be able to complete the project over a spare weekend. Here’s what you can expect from the process.
Choose a Location
You’ll want to choose your pond location carefully. You’ll need just the right amount of sunlight. You also want the pond to be on a level plot of land unless you want to do some serious landscaping work.
Also, consider kids, pets, and neighbors. If there are children around, you may want your pond to be in an enclosed area, if it’s more than a foot and a half deep.
Avoid an area surrounded by trees, otherwise, leaves and needles will fill and contaminate the pond, leading to more maintenance for you.
You also want your pond to be close enough to the house so you can enjoy the view and the sound of gurgling water as you sit outside in the morning drinking coffee.
Dig and Line the Pond
Next up, you can start digging for your pond. Depending on the type of ground you have, you may be able to do this by hand with a shovel. Otherwise, visit your local hardware store and rent a piece of machinery that can speed up the digging process.
You’ll want to line the bottom of the pond. This can either be with a softshell liner or a sturdy hard shell. Softshells let you create any pond shape and size you want. But using a hard shell will dictate the exact shape and size for you.
Before installing the liner, add a layer of sand underneath to create a smooth base for the pond.
Before filling the pond with water, install a pump at the bottom to ensure your pond water is getting recycled.
With the pond in place, it’s time to landscape around it. You can opt for natural materials, such as stone and plants, or you can use bricks and tiles to match your existing backyard design.
If using large stones along the edge to hide the pond liner, use a foam adhesive to keep the stones together. You can then fill in gaps with smaller pebbles or gravel.
If you plan to have fish in the pond, plant pond-friendly plants that will help support aquatic life in your new pond.
Add a Pond Fountain
No backyard pond is complete without a floating pond fountain. Fountains are vital to the health and success of your backyard pond.
Fountains do a lot to help keep your pond clean and full of life, rather than stagnant and stinky. The constant movement of the water adds oxygen, otherwise known as aeration. Oxygen is necessary for pond plants and fish to survive.
Aeration also regulates the water temperature in your pond. Without proper aeration or water flow, the bottom of the pond will be much cooler, while the top, which receives the most sunlight, will be warmer.
This causes fish to only live in certain parts of the pond, not utilizing the entire water column. This prevents your pond from acting like a fully functional ecosystem.
Fountains also work to break up the surface tension of the pond, preventing algae growth and mosquito reproduction. They will prevent your pond from smelling foul and will create a much more pleasant pond to sit near, look at, and even wade into from time to time.
To add a fountain, you’ll need to consider the size of your pond. Larger ponds will either need a large, centralized fountain, or multiple smaller fountains.
Typically, you’ll need to tie down the fountain so it stays put in your desired location. Fountains come with ropes that you can tie to large rocks or concrete blocks that sit on the bottom of the pond.
Plug the water-safe power cable into your pondside power source and watch your fountain, and your pond, come to life.
Make Your Home an Oasis
Now that you know how to build a backyard pond, it’s time to start dreaming and planning. The sooner you have your pond built, the sooner you can enjoy more time outside next to the water.
You deserve to relax at your own home and a backyard pond is a perfect way to do so.
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