How to Build a Fishpond

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Building a Fishpond

Have you always dreamed about building a fishpond in your backyard? While most people may think that to build a fishpond you only have to dig a hole, there is some planning that you need to do before you pick up that shovel. With proper planning and attention, you will be able to enjoy the life and beauty of goldfish and other fresh water fish year around.

Where do you start in your quest to build a fishpond?

Build a fishpond for goldfish and fresh water fish

Choose your location. While under a tree may seem like an ideal spot, it may be the wrong idea if it is a deciduous tree. The leaves that may fall into the pond will rot and cause the pond to become polluted and dangerous for the fish that makes their home there. You want to build a fishpond in a place that you consider carefully. It will become a permanent piece of landscape, so you want to make this decision as carefully as possible.

Determine the shape and size of your fishpond. Do you want an oval fishpond, square fishpond, or a free flowing shaped fishpond? Consider the size of your fishpond carefully. It is important that you dig the fishpond deep enough that it will not freeze during the winter and it is important that you carefully consider the radius as well.

Nothing is worse than getting your fishpond all set up and ready to go, only to realize that it is smaller than you had imagined or wanted.

Consider the landscaping and surroundings. If you want to have plants in and around your fishpond, you want to make sure that it is in an area that gets enough sun for the plants to grow. Also, if you have to do quite a bit of earth moving or moving of rocks to build a fishpond, the budget will increase. This is something to consider when you are planning out your fishpond.

Now you are ready to begin. The first thing that you want to do is to lay out the perimeter of your fishpond, using flexible material, like a garden hose. Once you have the shape and size right, use spray paint to line out where you need to start digging. Cut the edges of the fishpond using an edger to give you a starting point for removing grass or sod. Remove all of the grass or sod from the fishpond area. Determine where you are going to place the filter and dig out the area for it as directed by the manufacturer.

Now, you are ready to begin digging the pond. Creating different depths can give your pond more interest visually and for the goldfish or freshwater fish that you are making a home for. You can realize your pond ideas most easily with a preformed pond shell, or more advanced with flexible liner; you can make a clay pond or build a concrete backyard pond. If you install a bottom drain and pipes, you will be able to drain the whole pond in the future. Otherwise you'll have to pump out all water in case of necessary servicing or repairing.

After you have dug it out to a depth that you want, you are ready to lay down the pond underlayment and pond liner. Two layers are necessary to ensure that the pond will be waterproof and that the rocks or roots will not be able to come through. Place rocks around the edges of the fishpond to keep the layers in place and completely cover the liner with rocks, filling in any empty spaces with smaller rock. Wash off the rocks and pump the muddy water out of the fishpond. Accessorize with river rocks and plants as desired and fill your pond. Allow the fish to acclimate to the water by placing them still in their bag in the water until the temperature matches that in the bag.

You are now ready to enjoy your fishpond. Deciding to build a fishpond may take some time and energy, but it will be well worth it when you see what a difference in can make in your yard and in your life.

Fishpond Construction / Quick Guide

Fishpond construction guide How to construct a fishpond for goldfish or fresh water fish

  • choose a pond-location away from trees and leaf fall
  • decide fishpond-size and shape
  • dig the hole according to the perimeter you've laid out before
  • include different levels of pond-depth for different plant zones
  • plan and prepare piping systems or foundations for step stones or statues
  • lay down the pond underlayment and pond liner
  • put in gravel and place rocks around the edges of your water garden
  • add plants and fill in the water slowly
  • wait a few weeks before adding any fish or pond life
How to build a fishpond in your backyard
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How to Build a Fishpond?