What steps do I need to take to build a water garden using a preformed pond?

  1. Make a list of everything you'll need to get the job done.
  2. Pick up everything on your list at your friendly neighbourhood hardware store.
  3. When you get home, gather up all of the tools and supplies that you'll need.
  4. Plan and measure for the pond. It may help to trace the outline of the pond with a spade.
  5. Dig the hole for the pond, taking into account the depth of the shelves and bottom.
  6. Put the preformed pond in the hole, and check to make sure that it is level.
  7. Once the pond is level, back fill around the edge, and get ready to fill with water.
  8. Now you can fill up the pond with water.
  9. First, put the pump together following the instructions in the box. Next, throw the pump assembly in the pond. Then, plug it into a GFCI protected outlet. Finally, adjust the water flow with the diverter valve.
  10. Now you're ready to add a waterfall! But first, unplug the pump! Next, attach the waterfall tubing to the outlet of the diverter valve. Then connect the other end of tubing to the waterfall. Finally plug the pump back in and adjust as necessary.
  11. Now you can finish off your pond with fish, plants and landscaping.
  12. Sit back and relax - you're finished!

All of these steps are outlined in our cartoon of Davey the Dog!

What should I do to winterize my water garden?

If you don't have any fish in your water garden and have a small pond, then you can empty your pond in the winter, remove pumps and other pond accessories. On the other hand, if you have a larger pond, and you have no reason to keep the pumps running through the winter, you can always remove the pumps and accessories, but leave the water in the pond still. Make sure you also remove any tubing for your pumps and waterfalls - water can freeze in them and cause the tubing to crack.

You should start winterizing your pond during the fall - approximately when the leaves start to change colours. Clean your water garden for the long period of inactivity, and place a pond net over top - this keeps out leaves, and prevents them from sinking to the bottom of your water garden where they will rot and release excesses of nitrogen into the water. After the leaves have all fallen, and before it starts to snow, remove the netting so the snow and ice doesn't collapse it.

Your plants should be brought inside and stored in water in the direct sunlight before the first frost. If you're storing them in an area away from direct sunlight, shine a grow lamp over them for a few hours a day.

If you do have fish in your water garden, you can still easily winterize it.

If you have small fish, your fish will probably not last outside for the winter. You can bring your fish into an aquarium or pond that's equivalent in size to the one they are used to for the winter. Drain your pond until there is approximately a quarter of the water remaining. Cover your pond to keep out snow. In the winter, clean out your pond, and bring your fish back into the pond by placing a couple of them in a bag of the indoor pond water and placing the entire bag into the pond. After the fishes' body temperature is adapted to the new environment, remove the fish from the bag.

If you decide to keep your fish outside, your water garden should have an area that is at least 30 feet deep. You should have an aerator and a de-icer for your pond. Once the pond water temperature has reached around 10C (50F), stop feeding your fish. If you want to continue feeding them, make sure you have fish food especially for cold weather conditions.

How can I install a water garden inside my home?

If you are looking to install a water garden inside, you should use a small preformed pond. The larger the pond, the more gallons of water it holds, the more pressure it puts on what is supporting it. Always check with the manufacturer to ensure that your pond can be installed above ground.

What pump size should I get for my water garden?

In order to keep oxygenated water, then the water in your pond needs to be turned over at least once ever couple of hours. To start with, you will need a pump that will turn over at least half of the water in your pond in one hour. If your pond has 2000 gallons of water in it, then you would need a pump that pumps at least 1000 GPH. Of course, if you have a fountain or a waterfall, you are going to need a pump that will turn more than 1000 GPH.

How can I fight algae?

Algae is a common problem for water gardens. It is naturally going to occur where there is water and light. Keep in mind that you don't want your pond to be crystal clear, especially with plants and fish. If you do find that you have a lot of algae, however, there are things you can do to prevent an excess of it.

When water travels through the UV Sterilizer, it gets zapped with UV light, which kills the algae cells. The Pressure Filter with UV have the UV Sterlizer as a part of the filter. The Pond Skimmers also help to eliminate algae in water.