2) What is the installation time?
Most 11' x 16' ponds can be completed in five work days. However, prior visits are made to discuss the design and placement of your pond. Every waterscape is unique in that we create a pond that meets your specific needs. Our creative team will guide you through the experience while taking all aspects of your yard into account. The completed pond will not only look natural in its setting, but will be ecologically balanced to take care of itself.
3) What preparation is required?
Two things may be needed to prepare for the pond installation. We will need a separate electrical 110V GFCI protected circuit within 10 feet of the pond location. If you would like a separate water fill line we can install it. Both need to be within 10 feet of the pond. We will leave the pond running on your extension cord until you can have the electrical supply installed. ( we recommend you have it installed AFTER the pond )
4) What about mosquitoes when I get a Water Garden?
Stagnant water attracts, but moving water does not! It is also easier to prevent than it is to get rid of mosquitoes. The key to prevention is constantly moving pond water. This is easily accomplished with a good circulation and filtering system that includes:
Skimmer - sweeps the surface of your pond and keeps it free of various kinds of falling debris.
Biological Filter - a series of natural filters such as rocks, activated charcoal, and colonies of aerobic bacteria which all serve to filter and break down debris as circulating water passes through the unit, and...
Fish – fish are the ultimate mosquito prevention. To a fish, mosquito larva look like a great big chunk of Sara Lee chocolate cake; and fish don’t go on diets!
A quality circulation and filtration system that will keep the water moving constantly will be free from mosquito pests year-round.
5) What does it cost to run a pond?
An 11' x 16' pond will run about $25.00 monthly in electricity. The submersible pumps that we use are only drawing a maximum of 2.6 amps, using 286 watts.
6) Do I need plants?
Plants are another important part of the eco-system. Plants & algae compete for the nutrients in water. If you do not have plants, you will have algae.
There are many plants available for water gardens, from marginal to lilies. The plants all perform a function while beautifying your pond. Lilies should cover 60% of the pond surface area. Due to the shallow nature of the pond, lilies will keep the water cool in the summer and keep algae away. Lilies also come in two varieties, day and night blooming. Both kinds are wonderful to have in a pond.
7) Why is a liner used instead of cement?
We use a liner because they do not leak. We live in an area where there are two realities. We have expansive soil and earthquakes. Cement ponds fail at some point. Our liner is a 45 mil EPDM, which is fish safe and has a life expectancy of 40 years. The manufacturer guarantees these liners for 20 years.
The first one is a mechanical filter which is like a pool skimmer. This has a net bag that traps any debris that is blown onto the surface of the pond. This filter has the option of an automatic water fill. It also has an overflow connection. This filter also filters smaller particles and protects your pump, while keeping it clear, by means of a single media filter pad.
The second is a biological filter which is placed under the waterfall. This filter is completely hidden from view. This biological filter contains more filtration pads, as well as lava rock. This filter function is to convert toxic compounds produced from the fish into nitrates. These nitrates are utilized by the aquatic plants in your pond.
Both filters are necessary in maintaining the health and the cleanliness of your pond.
9) Why do I need gravel on top of the Pond Liner?
Rocks and gravel do much more than just make the pond look more natural than an ugly black plastic liner. The rocks serve as a physical sun block, prohibiting UV rays (a rubber liner's worst enemy) from attacking the rubber liner. Also, the sheer weight of the rocks and gravel help keep the liner in place compared to liners without gravel that can shift and even develop air bubbles from underneath.
10) Why do I want an ecosystem?
In order to be successful, a water garden must develop a living balance with itself. Your pond is a fine recipe of ingredients from Mother Nature's cookbook and each one serves a vital purpose.
The fish consume the plant life including the algae.
Ultimately, the fish produce waste that, along with other forms of natural debris, falls to the pond's bottom.
Aerobic bacteria and other microorganisms that colonize on the rocks and gravel on the pond bottom break down this debris that is then absorbed by the plants as nutrients.
Plants thrive and are once again eaten on by the fish…
and round and round it goes, a circle of nature!
13) Why do I need a skimmer in my pond?
A skimmer is critical to maintain a pond free of debris and will also save you maintenance time and extend the life of the pond pump. Ponds without skimmers are magnets for wind blown debris and this debris will eventually clog and damage the pump. A skimmer minimizes the routine cleaning of the pond and will add years to the life of your equipment.
14) What is a UV Light Sterilizer and why shouldn’t I use one?
UV light sterilizers are specially designed lights intended to kill algae growth in outdoor ponds. Pond lovers are often lured into buying these devices to rid their ponds of that dreaded “green monster”, algae. However, these lights are no miracle cure and in fact, can cause more problems than they solve.
What usually happens when man attempts to battle Mother Nature? That’s right, we usually lose because Mother Nature always has another trick up here sleeve. Such is the case with UV Sterilizers. These lights will immediately kill the current crop of algae which will conveniently fall to the pond bottom creating…you guessed it…more nutrients to fuel the growth of yet more algae. In many cases, the subsequent rounds of algae growth are even stronger than the first and even harder to get rid of!
On top of this, it is recommended the light in your UV unit be replaced once every 6 months to keep it working properly. Now there’s an added maintenance task, combined with an added expense and the thought of adding yet more dead fluorescent bulbs to our burdened environment. The only way to create a truly low maintenance pond is to establish a balanced ecosystem from the start. A balanced ecosystem will work in harmony with Mother Nature, not against her. As someone once said, it isn’t wise to fool with Mother Nature.
15) Are Fish necessary in my pond?
Fish are an important part of the eco-system, as well a source of pleasure. Fish are perfect. They bring great pleasure and there is little maintenance. You can choose to feed your new pets or not. The pond will provide the fish with the food they need. However, if you choose to feed your fish, you will find them very friendly and entertaining.
You can even train your fish to eat out of your hand or come to you by command.
When you go on vacation, the fish can take care of themselves.
17) What if I choose not to have fish in my water garden?
While not a requirement, fish are an integral part of the pond ecosystem. They will mow down algae and other 'stuff,' keeping the pond in better condition. They will also consume mosquito larvae that may be in your pond. Because fish are so easy to keep, we highly recommend that you add at least a few to ensure a balance in your water garden.
18) How do I know how many fish are "too many" in my pond? How about too few? Just right?
Too many fish means too little food, problems with your fish, and potential for an overgrowth of algae. Too few fish can mean that the pond's nutrition will not be satisfactorily absorbed and recycled. An accepted rule of thumb is 1 inch of fish per square foot of pond surface area. In other words… a 10' x 10' pond, or 100 square feet, could support 100 inches of fish. This 100 inches could consist of 10 ten inch fish, 20 five inch fish, or...well, you get the picture.
20) How do I know that Pondtastic has the knowledge and experience to install my Water Garden?
We have selected and use only the finest Pond Systems from Aquascapes Designs , an innovator in pond technology. We continue to study the latest in designs, technology and installation methods to ensure the highest quality water garden at the most affordable price. Pondtastic Water Gardens was chosen as the top CAC of the year and is a WFTV Local Expert. Please check out our Testimonials section to view a sample of our customer feedback.
We look forward to helping you turn your water garden dreams into reality.