Waterfall and Pond Design and Constuction
our Waterfalls and Ponds from leaking not for 3 or 4 years,
but for as long as the client owns the pond!
This is a Small Waterfall I just finished pouring the shell. As you can see its already holding water quite well
and I haven't applied any sealer yet. Once I seal it I'll begin adding the larger stones and should have it running next week!
We guarantee our ponds from leaking not for 3 or 4 years, but for as long as the client owns the pond!
Yes, we can guarantee the bottom drains and skimmer from ever being the source of a leak.
Yes, we guarantee that you can walk on any rock in the waterfall or around the pond without it moving.
With our construction methods we can guarantee you will not see any concrete above water level when the project is finished.
Because we don't have to worry about damaging a liner, we don't have to be cautious with the size or placement of our rock.
This enables us to create realistic and natural looking arrangements of the rock
Dispelling Myths About Concrete & Pond Liners
1)"One problem with concrete and mortar construction is that of cement alkali leaching out for some time after construction, poisoning the pond water with high alkalinity. It also leaves unsightly white deposit build-ups at the points of exit and on the surface of rocks in the waterfall."
NOT TRUE! If the concrete you use to pour the shell is the correct mix, the concrete is so dense that no leaching can even occur. Also, because of the density of the concrete, it is not only waterproof, but stronger than normal 5-sack mix used to pour driveways, patios and sidewalks. You coat the finished surface with one of several non toxic concrete sealers, it cannot leach.
(2)"When you use mortar mix to secure the rocks in a waterfall, the water that soaks into the porous mortar joints, leaches out alkali and phosphorescence that poisons the pond.
TRUE in the past, but not anymore. Regular mortar is porous, allowing water to pass through, dissolving and collecting the cement residue. This had been a major concern of mine for many years. After the completion of a waterfall, I would have to run the waterfall for two or three weeks, shutting it off every 4 or 5 days, and acid-clean the white alkali residue off the rocks that had built up. Then, when we were finished, we would have to acid clean and rinse out the pond.
We have a secret formula that renders the mortar mix non porous and waterproof. It also makes regular mortar mix three times stronger. In addition, this mix is so strong in its holding ability that once it cures, a sledge hammer is needed to remove a rock. In most cases, the rock breaks up before coming free from the secret formula mortar.
It is not only waterproof, but it bonds very well with all types and textures of rocks. It will create a watertight barrier that comes in handy when building rock damns in the waterfall. The main feature of the special formula, is that it allows for much more creativity. You have the ability to raise the water level above the confines of the concrete shell without water leaking through the mortar joints, as in the case of regular type mortar mix.
This special mix is not for sale in the stores, and never will be! This discovery has revolutionized the effectiveness of mortar mix and its ability to bond, waterproof, and prevent alkali leaching.
So what is the bottom line?
Pond liners cannot be guaranteed not to leak, for a myriad of reasons. Concrete and rebar ponds, if built properly, will stay leak-free for decades, if not generations. You be the judge. You're the one investing your hard earned money and time into it.
Adding a waterfall to an otherwise boring backyard can bring life and tranquility into a home garden. Waterfalls can transform a backyard into a more sophisticated garden with ease. By planning well, taking the appropriate precautions and understanding the requirements for a backyard garden, a simple backyard waterfall can become a work of art.
Start with Some PreplanningSurvey the garden and take some time to plan. Less is more when determining the appropriate size. Measure the backyard and the area that you are considering for placement of the waterfall. Keep children and pets in mind when selecting the location and the size. In addition, consider the layout. A waterfall that leads down a small stream and into a tiny pond sounds wonderful, but it could be too much for a small space. A small waterfall with a pond is the ideal choice for many gardens. Consider the size of a backyard waterfall carefully before beginning. Location Is Everything Selecting the best location for an outdoor waterfall and pond requires more than accounting for space. Be sure to consider any underground wiring or cables, the sound of the waterfall, and whether it might be distracting to neighbors if placed close to property lines, and the distance to a plug for the waterfall pump (one may need to be installed). If the backyard has a slope to it, placing the waterfall nearby can aid in the flow of water and help the waterfall and pond blend into the garden nicely. Now that these things have been taken into consideration, it's finally time to get designing.
Planning the Perfect Pond For Your GardenBy Douglas Hoover
Good planning is essential during fish pond design. Unlike lawns and borders which are more easily moved or altered, a pond is less easy to change once installed. When designing, there are several important things to take into account.
LocationOne of the most important things to consider is location. This is partly down to personal preference. Some people like a pond to be near to the house for viewing from indoors, while others prefer it to be a separate entity which they can visit when the mood takes them. If it can be viewed from inside the home then you can benefit from its beauty all year round. Site it too far from the house and feeding and maintenance can become a chore and missed out during bad weather. Too near to the house or garden walls and it can cause problems with deep excavations interfering with drains or foundations.
Do try to position the pond so that it is sheltered from cold winds and receives sunlight for at least half the day. This will also benefit plants in and around the pond.
Where possible avoid sitting your pond under or too near to overhanging deciduous trees, as their leaves and blossom will fall into the pond and become a major headache in the autumn and winter months unless you are prepared to net the pond daily. Bear in mind that the leaves of willow, elder, oak, yew, poplars and laburnums trees are highly toxic. Additionally this will avoid tree roots piercing pond liners or cracking concrete.
Remember that you will need access to a power source if you intend to install lighting, pumps or filter systems. This may be easier and cheaper if it is nearer to the home or a shed with an existing power source. Also plumbing and drainage nearby will assist in filling, cleaning and siphoning operations.
Power and water supplies and drainage need to be considered. Armoured cable isn’t cheap and nor is the laying of permanent water drainage. Try to find the house plans if you can and see where all existing water pipes, gas pipes and other service supplies are located.
Always consider the safety of pets and young children. Remember a child can drown in water only a few inches deep. If you have young children then maybe a pond should wait until they are older and build a pebble filled water feature for now. If you do go ahead with a pond, you should consider covering it with strong wire mesh. Where children may be playing near a pond, it becomes essential to site it near to the home.
Also avoid areas where surface water tends to collect, or areas with a high water table as this could push up under the pond liner or structure and create problems. Avoiding these areas will reduce the risk of any pollutants being washed into the pond during heavy rain.
Styles of pond are very much down to personal choice but are partly dictated by the location and type of garden. The style of pond you choose may also determine its location. A formal raised pond may look out of place in the middle of a large lawn but would look perfect incorporated into a patio area.
There are various styles of pond such as formal and informal, sunken or raised, and this decision is mainly down to personal preference. If you are at all worried about small children around a deep koi pond, then a raised pond can sometimes be a safer option particularly as it is then easier to cover with strong mesh to avoid accidents. Formal ponds are usually square, oblong or exact circles, the type often seen in stately homes, whereas informal ponds are more often kidney or irregular shapes and lend themselves more to a natural cottage garden look.
Size and DepthSize should be in proportion to the surroundings, and do consider that if a pond is too wide, it is very difficult to catch the fish. Ideally it should be at least three feet deep, five if you are building a koi pond. This is particularly important if you do not live in the South of England as deeper water does remain slightly warmer in very cold weather.
Remember, the bigger the pond, the more fish you can keep, but you will need a bigger and more expensive filtration system. Also any water treatments required are in proportion to the number of gallons of water in the pond and filter system.
ShapeThe shape and surface area are generally down to personal preferences but it is always best to create a shape which allows for a flow of water between the outlet, bottom drain or pump and the inflow of any filter systems. This will allow solid waste to be circulated and removed to the filter and not get caught in nooks and crannies. Using complex shapes is also best avoided to alleviate construction difficulties and create fewer folds in pond liners. The easiest way to envisage you pond in situ is to take a rope or hose and lay it where you think it will be sited. It is much easier to see how the finished pond will look using this method and once you are happy with your design, the pond outline can be marked out.
Don’t forget to allow for any streams or waterfall features you are considering and allow for planting areas. Normally a shelf is allowed for around the edge of a pond, but in the case of koi, who can be particularly destructive towards plants, it is sometimes best to allow a separate area for planting or even a separate adjacent pond.