greengate features quality ponds from Aquascape. We carry everything you need to install and maintain your pond; liners, pumps, filters, lights, and of course, water plants.
Make your yard a tranquil getaway.
Water features, such as ponds and fountains, have become very popular recently. The sound of running water is soothing. An attractively landscaped pool with fish, water plants like the water lily and a waterfall or fountain can be a beautiful addition to your garden. Ponds have become places where the beauty and tranquility of water amongst foliage can be easily integrated into your garden. A pond will also attract birds to your garden. They are a super addition to gardens, as well as, they offer added colour and movement. In southern Alberta you'll find that most songbirds gather near water, so if this suits your fancy it's well worth the effort. This can be especially nice if you choose to run your pond in winter.
Your pond can be a place for contemplation that begins with deliberation. Water gardens are more than water holes in the ground and can have function, meaning and should be as individual as its surroundings. They can be slow moving, purposeful, geometric and formal, reflecting blooms that surround it or free-flowing, utilizing irregularly shaped rocks, and shoreline, inviting birds and offering a pleasing environment for fish creating its own ecosystem.
Whatever your taste, a pond can complement or contrast your existing garden. Consider its theme first. Will it be a single body of water or several? Will it consist of deep pools to magnify the colours of its surroundings? Will there be symbolism like in Japanese water gardens, with bridges, stepping stones and chimes?
It could be whimsical, tropical or a simple well. Perhaps it can have an oasis theme augmented with sand. Will statuary play a part in your pond? Spitters, fountains, waterfalls and even rivers can be built into your pond. These are things to consider before you begin.
Once this has been decided the next step is to decide where your pond is to be located, and how it is to be constructed. There are a couple of things to consider when building a pond. Pond size should be as large as the site and your budget will allow as larger volumes of water do not change temperature as quickly. This is especially important when you live in a climate with extreme temperature changes. You'll find most water plants and aquatic animals do best in a more constant climate.
Depth is practical in Calgary at 18-23 inches. A pool 24 or more inches deep requires, by law, a lockable, 6-foot fence. Laws are different everywhere and you should check your local code. Pond on farms can be huge and deep enough to over winter trout. If plants, particularly water lilies, are to be included, at least 6 hours of sunlight daily is necessary. Locate your pond where it can be seen and heard from both inside your home and sitting areas of your garden. A grounded electrical supply is necessary for the pump and possible lighting scenarios. This is a consideration as digging a trench for power opposed to running and extension cord can be an expense but also big advantage. Remember to check for underground utilities etc. before you dig.
Heavy butyl liners are more of a challenge to install, but give you unlimited flexibility and design. Recently, lighter but very durable pond liners have come on the market. You might want to look into them before you choose. We have 15mil liner that works as well as any.
A ground-fault interrupter must be on new homes, and is recommended for older ones, on the outside breaker box.
The more thought that goes into your pond the more rewarding it will be. Take a moment to study your yard. Notice how the sunlight travels across it and how the rain and groundwater flows over the land. From this you will see some pitfalls that will be difficult to correct once you've built your pond. If it's shallow and is directly in the sun it may heat up too much. Also, substantial evaporation can be a constant source of aggravation, as your pond will need constant attention. Try to avoid that if you can. Also, you won't want drainage flowing into and overflowing your pond every rain shower. Try to ensure that this will not affect your pond. Take note of what will happen when it does overflow? Where will the water go? Into you bed of begonias or your garage? This would not be good. Try to avoid locating under deciduous trees, as leaves dropping into the pond are a nuisance too.
You've scouted it out and found the best place for your pond. Now draw up a plan. If you are using a pre formed pond turn it over and edge against it with your shovel. Did you call before you dug?
Excavate area. A point to consider is the shape of your pond's sides. Your soil conditions, as well as, the type of plant and or animal life you wish to incorporate into your water garden's ecosystem often dictate this. You may dig a little deeper than your final depth on order to facilitate leveling and or underlay.
These are the most common because they provide easy access in and around the pond and serve as ideal shelves on which to place various aquatic vegetation. Also, fish tend to respond better to environment with varying water depths. Cut the steps, do not build by filling.
This shape is only appropriate in soil that can hold its shape or where vertical reinforcement is used.
This shape needs little reinforcement as it is naturally more stable. It is also easy to shape and work with when laying the pond liner itself. They're common in Koi ponds.
Once your shape and depth are formed compact the soil on the bottom and level.
Use sand to buffer the liner from sharp objects.
Level and compact your pond bottom and walls.
You might also want to line the bottom with old carpet, or layers of newspaper, then add sand to cushion the liner. This will help stop stones from working their way up to the liner. Remember that water is heavy and any object under the liner will create pressure and possible punctures.
Liners are draped into the hole and neatly folded at curves to fit. Add water as you shape the liner to help it settle into the pond. Pre-formed ponds are set into the hole so that the lip is just at soil level. Be sure the pool is level.
Use a board across it with a carpenter's level. If the pond is not level, the water will still be level, so it will look unbalanced.
Place your liner and fill with water.
Edge the pond with appropriate material for your garden. Use your edging to hold fast the pond liner. Never edge without filling the pond first. This pulls all slack from the liner. It might look best with rock edging if rock is used elsewhere in the area. If there are other wood features such as a deck close by, it could look best with wood edging. It's up you. You may want to add a waterfall, fountain, or spillway. This should be done before the excess liner is cut off. This is important as you should back your waterways with liner
Once this is complete trim excess liner.
All water gardens require a submersible pump for circulation. greengate offers a complete line of submersible pumps designed to operate safely and silently while completely submerged in your pond. The size of the pump you will need will depend largely on how high you want your fountain to be and how much water you will need to circulate.
For this reason, it is important to know the gallon capacity of your pond. The water in a basic pond should be turned at least once an hour, which means a 450-gallon pond should have at least a 450 GPH (Gallons Per Hour) pump. To calculate the gallons in your pond, follow this formula:
Length x Width x Depth x 7.5 = Gallons.
4'L x 6'W x 1.5'D x 7.5 = 270 Gallons
Volume can be calculated on odd shaped pools by estimation. It's not an exact science, but you will find that it is important. Measure the widest and deepest spots on your pond. This will ensure you have more than adequate circulation. In other words your pond will be "over powered" and turn more than once an hour. For all intent and purposes this is an advantage. You should know that the more your water turns the less problem you will have with algae growth. Also if you "over power' your pond you give yourself the opportunity to add splitters for other features later without having to purchase another pump. We say…. more is more.
Also the height of any fountain will be dependent on the size of pump. A good thought to keep in your mind is that it is possible to restrict the flow of your pump to your fountain or pond. It's not possible to increase it.
You've thought a lot about it and done a lot of work. Now your brand new water garden is brimming with fresh water, and you're almost ready to introduce plants and fish to your new habitat.
Our water is generally designed to make it safe for human consumption. This means that there are a few additives. Not all of them are safe for aquatic life. For this reason, it's a good idea to treat the water following this simple procedure. This will not only help expensive plants and fish survive, but also help you maintain your pond.
A bog garden can be a great addition to any garden! While most of us do not have a moist spot in our landscapes, building this type garden will allow you to grow moisture-loving plants. Most of the plants suitable for bog gardens come from marshy, wet places.
Traditionally when people grew this type of plant in their existing landscapes, it was required to keep them in the shade and water several times daily to keep them from wilting. By cultivating these same plants in a bog, it is now possible for them to be grown in the sun.
The ideal location for a bog is in conjunction with a pond as most bog plants live near water in their native environment. However, a stand alone section of your landscape will also work. Bog plants thrive with exposure to full sun but will survive in nearly any area. Once placement is determined, select the size and shape of bog that best suits your space. Bigger is better as it accommodates the size of these plants as they mature and holds more water for a longer period of time. Once the spot is selected, begin excavating 45cm (18") to 75cm (30") deep. Digging the hole is the hardest part of the project and once complete you will be left with a sizable pile of soil that can be used elsewhere in your yard. Following excavation, line the hole with a plastic sheet or pond liner at least 8mm thick. One continuous sheet is preferable as smaller overlapping sheets will not hold the water effectively. Cut drainage holes 2.5cm (1") in diameter and 30cm (12") apart around the liner 20cm (8") from the top. The drainage holes allow the excess water at the surface to drain away from the plant's crowns so they are not left rotting in the standing water.
Fill your bog with soil. The bottom layer should be of good quality topsoil 20cm (8") deep followed by 20cm (8") of well-rotted manure with a small amount of bone meal added. Mix slightly with the top soil below. Top the rest of the bog with peat moss making sure to put extra peat in as it will settle substantially when wet. Fill the bog with water making sure that the all the soil is thoroughly saturated. Be patient. This may take some time depending on how dry the soils were at the beginning. Now the only thing left is the selection of plants to grow in your bog!