With the weather clearing up in spring, you may be tempted to have a look at some garden landscaping ideas to turn your yard into a winner.
Fish ponds, or water gardens, can transform your garden from simply that grassy space behind your house to a lively and vibrant outdoor area. And while relatively high-end, if you choose to install it yourself, you can save thousands of dollars.
In the following two-part article, we'll outline the various steps you'll have to take into account to create your personal aquarium. First comes the preparation.
Choose the right location
As for anything involving garden DIY, creating a fish pond requires carefully choosing a good site. Most importantly, you want somewhere where both shade and sun can get to it - to keep the fish cool, but to allow the water lillies to grow. However, there are other factors to consider, too.
Ideally, you want it somewhere you can see - after all, one of the joys of having a pond is that you get to frequently admire it. You also need to place it with an appropriate distance from trees so that leaves and other objects don't contaminate it.
Also, try and place it somewhere where rainwater is unlikely to flow into it, carrying debris, chemicals and other contaminants into your pond.
Don't flounder around
Deciding what kind of fish and how many you're going to have is one of the most important preliminary steps, as it will affect how you construct the pond. For example, if you're going to have quite a few fish swimming around in there, you'll need to plan on purchasing and installing a filter.
Having fish isn't just an aesthetic choice - they help to fertilise the vegetation and eat algae, among other things.
Size it up
While it might be tempting to go small and limit the amount of work you have to do, a bigger pond is actually easier to take care of.
You'll also need different depths for different fish. Larger fish might need around a metre's depth or more, while goldfish and water lillies don't have to be much more than half a metre deep.