Article 3 - Water Gardens &
Traditional water garden ponds are used for growing aquatic plants
and keeping ornamental fish such as Koi. In order to provide for the
needs of your pond's inhabitants, a pond should have steep sides and
flat bottoms, often with a shelf around the perimeter for containers
of plants that need to grow in standing water. When building a water
garden, you can choose between a prefabricated ponds, or build your
own using PVC liner material.
Water Gardening with Wildlife in Mind
If one of your goals is to attract local wildlife to your water garden,
then be sure that it allows an animal access to water without the danger
of slipping or falling into deep water and drowning. Think of your pond
as a large birdbath. Birds feel secure because they can hop and splash
safely. A wildlife-friendly water garden should have a similar shape
but, of course, on a larger scale.
Of course, if you do intend to attract wildlife, and your pond or water
garden is also the home of your favorite Koi, or other fish, then you
must be sure to build in some "hidey holes" to keep your fish
safe when raccoons or predatory birds arrive.
Most people prefer to use a PVC liner and design their own water garden's
shape. A liner let's you use a rope, or garden hose, to layout the pond's
shape. It also gives you maximum flexibility over slope and pond depth.
If you plan to have your pond do double duty, as both a Water Garden,
and a Koi Pond, then here are some things you should keep in mind:
A Koi pond is different from a water garden because keeping Koi naturally
limits the amount of plant that your pond can have. Why? Koi eat some
plants! A Koi pond should also be larger that a traditional water garden
because Koi tend to get quite large. A good Koi pond should be no less
than 1000 gallons in volume, although the bigger the better. It also
needs to have at least one area of the pond that is at least 3 feet
deep, and 4 - 5 feet, if possible..
Water gardens typically contains both goldfish and aquatic plants.
If your water garden is in moderate climate zone, then plan for your
pond to be at least 2 feet deep. In colder climates you will need to
provide for least 12" to 16" of water below the freeze zone.
For more information about water gardens, or Koi ponds, please visit
us at www.macarthurwatergardens.com
Until then - Happy Pondkeeping!
Brett Fogle, Owner
MacArthur Water Gardens
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