Whether it's providing a home to fish and frogs or just acting as an accent to your yard, garden ponds are a beautiful addition to any outdoor space. The soothing sound of trickling water can make your yard a sanctuary on calm summer evenings.
If you're the handy type, you might choose to install a garden pond of your own creation. A pond can be constructed by simply digging a hole of the shape and size you desire and installing an appropriate liner. Many liners have algaecides to keep the water in your pond in pristine condition. Put some thought into the location of your pond; you won't want it to interfere with how you use your yard, and you may want to keep it away from trees that can drop their leaves into it.
Pre-fabricated pond kits are another popular choice for do-it-yourselfers. Kits sometimes come with a pre-molded pond tub. You then dig a hole to match the shape and size of the tub, which you sink into the ground and fill with water.
No matter which type of water pond you choose, you'll need to think about the circulation of water and how you'll keep the pond clean. A pump, fountain or aerator can help keep the water in your pond properly oxygenated for healthy plants and fish.
Fish aren't a necessary addition to your garden pond, but they can be interesting to watch and are easy to care for. If you're planning a fish pond, talk to a local aquarium store about how to care for and feed the fish.
The most common choices for fishponds are goldfish or koi. Their bright white and orange colors make them easy to see and, as fish go, they're fairly hardy breeds. Be aware that koi eat vegetation while goldfish do not. If you've got expensive plants in your fish pond, it may be a better idea to opt for goldfish. Koi also continue to grow regardless of the size of the pond, while goldfish only grow to a size appropriate for their environment. If you do opt for koi, limit their population to two or three to ensure there's enough oxygen in the water for each fish.
Fish should be brought inside each winter and kept in an aquarium until the pond warms up to a hospitable temperature. While fish can survive outside during winter in the wild, a typical garden pond is shallow enough that it will freeze solid, killing the fish.
Garden and fish ponds are an interesting feature to add to any yard. Ask your local nursery for tips on plants that will thrive well in your pond.