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My garden pond kit

180 Gallon Black Folding Preformed Pond/Streamlet Kit
180 Gallon Black Folding Preformed Pond/Streamlet Kit

$239.99

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By: Sandy Belson, Orange County, Florida
March.4/2008

Recently, I installed a beautiful backyard garden pond in my yard. This letter will detail some of the trials and tribulations that were commonplace during my preformed pond installation project. For my pond project, I decided upon a preformed pond kit. The kit came complete with the pond, streamlet, pump, fountain heads, silk water lilies, and a free underwater light.

The advantage of a preformed pond is that the shape of the pond is already pre-determined for you. That meant I didn't need to dig a very intricate hole for the pond to fit into. Some ponds, such as the one I purchased, need to be unfolded before they can be installed. Regardless, the installation instructions for most preformed ponds I've seen seem relatively similar.

Before you can start your preformed pond project, you always need to decide where to place it. You will need to install the pond as close to your house as possible because the pond pump will need to be plugged into an electrical socket. However, for safety reasons make sure that you have a GFI (Ground Fault Interrupter) outlet near the pond to avoid cords across the lawn and electrocution. My pond was actually quite far away from the house, but I managed to re-use the wiring from a previous pond installation.

Be sure to consider the slope of the land and the location of the pond in order to avoid rainwater runoff. If the pond is located in a low-lying area, lawn fertilizers and other chemicals can wash into the pond and harm the fish and plants. A colleague of mine had recently installed a pond at a bottom of a hill. Much to his displeasure, rainwater kept on flooding his pond, and eventually he had to move the pond elsewhere. Preliminary planning before the commencement of the project will always save extra work afterwards.

Green Tip:

Grow your own vegetables. This will help to reduces carbon from fertilizers, and transportation.

Consider where the existing plants are in the yard. You can transplant plants away from an area to save them, and build the pond in their place. Large existing trees may have roots that extend into the area where you want the pond. It may be wise to move the pond farther away, or cut the roots and put up a blockade of some sort to try to keep them from pushing on the side of the pond. Cutting a tree down should be a last resort, because trees provide important shade to the pond, which helps to minimize pond algae (algae thrives on sunlight).

After you have decided on a location for your preformed pond, mark out the perimeter of the proposed pond site with an edge or flat shovel. Proceed by digging out a marked area that is slightly larger than the depth and perimeter of the pond. In actuality, this is usually the most difficult part of the installation. Many subdivisions have clay underneath the topsoil, which can make for extremely difficult digging (this was where my two sons really came in handy!). Remove all debris (stones, roots, etc.) to avoid punctures and warps, and cover the bottom of the hole and shelves with a thin layer of sand. Next, place the preformed pond in the hole and ensure that it is level in all directions, and that the pond is just above the ground level.

The kit that I used came complete with a small streamlet. The streamlet needed to be installed on a level surface adjacent to the pond. I personally recommend utilizing excess top-soil to build a raised mound for the preformed pond. On top of the raised mound, a flat slab can be placed, to keep the streamlet level. At this point, the fitting and tubing should be attached to the streamlet.

Algreen 30 Gallon Preformed Pond Kit
Algreen 30 Gallon Preformed Pond Kit

$134.99

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Before proceeding, the tubing should be hidden underneath the streamlet, and run to the center of the pond (the tube will be conveniently hidden by the streamlet’s water runoff). Before you begin to fill the pond with water, make sure you backfill around the edges with excess topsoil, and pack it in for maximum support. Recently, I read an article where an entire preformed pond cavity had collapsed, the article stated that the person installing the pond, left a huge gap in between the preformed pond and the hole. Rainwater had accumulated in this gap and caused the pond structure to completely collapse. I cannot stress enough how important it is to fill in this gap with backfill. The backfill will not only hold the preformed pond level and firmly in place, but it will also prevent the accumulation of undesirable material in the resulting gap.

After the pond is filled with water, the pond pump should be inserted into the pond, the streamlet tube should be connected to the pump, and the pump should be turned on. The pump should never be run “dry,” because without water, the motor will quickly burn out. At this point, you should install your underwater light, place flat rocks over the edge of the pond, and landscape the pond to your liking. Add some fish and plants, and voila! You now have you very own backyard water feature!

I purchased my pond and accessories from gardensupermart.com. The staff was very knowledgeable and shipping was in-expensive and very quick! I recommend this website for its high quality products and the large amounts of information it has. Thanks again!