Building Your Garden Pond
Once you have decided on the shape of your pond and where to site it in your garden you will need to make sure you have the following equipment in order to build it:
– a spade to dig the hole for your pond, and a wheelbarrow to carry away the soil.
– rope, a length of garden hose, or some bamboo poles to mark out the shape of your pond.
– a tape measure to measure the length, width and depth of your pond and a calculator to work out the size of the lining you will need.
– lining. Hard plastic shells are not very suitable for wildlife as their sides are usually too steep. Instead you will need a flexible pond liner made from rubber. The best colour is black as it reduces the growth of algae and gives better reflections.
– underlay to place under the lining to make a smooth surface for the liner to rest on. You could also use an old blanket or piece of carpet.
– a sharp knife or scissors to cut the lining.
– spirit level to check that the ledges are level all the way round.
– bricks, stones or pieces of turf to hold the lining in position and to hide its edges.
– sand or gravel to cover the lining once it is in position.
You will now be able to start constructing your pond.
– firstly dig a hole, starting at the centre and working out towards the edges. You should dig about 15 cm deeper than your required depth to allow room for the underlay and lining and have shallow slopes from the sides to the middle.
– smooth out the surface of the soil and remove any sharp objects such as rocks, stones or glass which might puncture the lining. Add an even layer of sand to the bottom.
– lay the underlay or carpet into the hole.
– lay the lining on top. Do not stretch it as it will expand when you fill the pond with water. Make sure it overhangs the edges and then weigh it down with bricks or stones.
– add a thin level of sand or gravel to cover the lining.
– fill the pond very gradually using a garden hose making sure you don’t disturb the sand or gravel at the bottom. As the pond fills the lining will expand and stretch. Make sure the edges are still all even.
– add a layer of sand around the edge and weigh down with more rocks, stones or turf as necessary.