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Installing A Preformed Pond

Posted by Sunset Garden Experts on


A water garden is a popular and attractive addition to your home landscape. It will also increase the value of your property.

Installation Steps

Step 1
Choose a sunny location and/or one with not less than 6 hours of light. Ponds should not be located near trees that will drop their leaves in to pond because it will upset the water chemistry. Place your rigid pond close to the patio where it can be easily seen and heard. Using a shovel, outline the pool shape slightly larger (3-4”) than the rigid pond liner.

Step 2
If you are installing a pool without an interior side ledge you can excavate the hole to 1-2” deeper than the rigid pool bottom ensuring it is completely level.

For pools with an interior ledge, dig down to the depth of the ledge making sure it is level. After this step, set the rigid pool into the hole and outline the interior depth with a trowel. Dig this hole out to 1-2” deeper than the pool.

Step 3
Line the excavation with 1-2” of sand, making sure it is level. This procedure ensures the pool will not be damaged by sharp objects.

Step 4
Set the pool into its final resting site and make it level. Now start to fill it with water. If the pool shifts while it settles; drain the pool and make it level (otherwise the pool will drain).

Step 5
As the pool is filling, enlarge the perimeter 6-8”, back-filling soil against the pool walls. Pack the soil against the pool wall to ensure the weight of the water rests on the soil surrounding the pool rather than the pool walls.

Step 6
Decide on the type of stone edging that will surround the pool. Flag stone makes the edge most natural. The edging material should overlap the liner edge by 1-2” to conceal it. To enhance your pool, prepare a border planting to surround the pond edge. A mixture of low creeping junipers and rockery plants is most attractive. Be sure the water is clean before adding fish or plants. (Drain if necessary) Dirty water will damage the fish and contribute to making your pond have a foul odor. Let the water stand for a week or two before adding fish or plants. This lets the chlorine, fluoride etc. (if using city water) be released from the water and lets the water come to air temperature. 

Step 7

To keep your water as clean as possible make sure to install some kind of pump and filter to circulate and clean the water. This is important if you have your pond out in a sunnier area as these spots tend to get more algae growth and this is limited by circulating water. Information you will need before going to pick out your pump and filter will be how many gallons of water your pond holds, as well as the difference in height from the lowest point of your pond to the highest point. This is important because if you are pumping water up to the top of a waterfall the height difference will make it harder for the pump to carry the water up and may require a more powerful pump. It is recommended that you get a pump that circulates all the water in your pond atleast once per hour. For Example if you have a 20 gallon pond you will need a pump that can pump 20 gallons per hour which is usually quite easy to find on the packaging. 

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