Choosing between water gardens or landscape ponds

commercial ponds

Water Gardens or Landscape Ponds

Do you want to make an extreme transformation to make your large, vacant, landscape look stunning and beautiful? Improve your space by creating some wonderful and refreshing ambiance at your place. What do you think can you put in there to make it unique and adorable? The solution to your problem might be water gardens or landscape ponds. These ponds can totally improve your home or your commercial space. These will serve as aquatic gardens where you can apply some architectural expertise to make your place look beautiful and attractive.

Aquatic-Based Ecosystem

In order to build a useful backdrop for a well-balanced ecosystem, then you should make or improve some shallow ponds on your lawn. There are different aquatic organisms that can flourish the environment. It will also grant you a sustainable and quality aquatic environment. The good news is, that these ponds will give you less hassle as it doesn’t have a high maintenance requirement in cleaning. You can even build a water fountain and underwater lighting to make it not just environmental but also attractive and pleasing to the eyes.

Landscape Ponds in History

Even way back in history, landscape ponds have been used to make their vast gardens appear striking. It has been proven how these affect the garden positively through time. From the beginning of ancient cultures up to the modern days, these ponds play a significant role for the environment and for beautification purposes as well. During the ancient era, these landscapes serve as water resources since faucets and water pumps were not yet invented during that time. The famous royalty dynasties of China and Persia became eminent for these aquatic architectural structures. They even utilized these for fish production and developed water agricultural lands.

Wildlife Gardens

Wildlife gardens are a good habitat for various aquatic wildlife and plant species. One example that can cater to this kind of environment for aquatic organisms is a landscape pond. It is not exclusive only to aquatic animals, but it is also good for amphibians, mammals and even aerial species. These self-established eco-systems are easier to handle and to take care of, however, it needs some thorough planning as well. In promoting biodiversity, a lot of expert gardeners especially those who indulge in organic gardening use these wildlife gardens for biological pest control. These man-made ecosystems can also charm other species such as birds, dragonflies, and wildflowers since it serves as a good and well-maintained environment for them.

Types of Water Garden Plants

There are a lot of famous aquatic plants that exist in the world. However, the most prominent varieties are the floating flora, submerged flora, and marginal flora. Floating flora can be so familiar with us. These are free-floating organisms. It provides shade to the other organisms living in the water. It has a lot of positive effects such as reducing the growth of algae like water-clover, mosquito ferns, and water hyacinth.

In the landscape industry, building a pond continues its progress blatantly. This kind of aquatic landscape design promotes and promulgates the value of property commercially and aesthetically. It can also provide various useful purposes such us for irrigation and drainage system which emboldens a wetland mitigation and ecosystem.

You do not have to worry too much about the expenses. It just needs to be given much effort to be planned really well and efficiently. Here are some great ideas to do when you’re planning to install one:

What is the significance of this pond for?

There are four different popular kinds of man-made ponds that showcase the unique landscape element of any aquatic feature:

Retention Pond

This pond is placed strategically in an area that gives it a good location to collect excess and contaminated water. This calculated spot or location is placed in a bottom of a slope to receive the runoff instead of damaging the turf. This is a simple but tactical way in order to avoid the destruction that the contaminated water composed of grass clippings and fertilizers. Through this method, it naturally recycles the water back into the environment safely instead of creating stagnant and destructive runoff water.
Just keep in mind that this kind of pond is vulnerable in containing harmful substances such as sulfur and iron. Therefore, this pond should be maintained properly.

Detention Pond

A retention pond is almost similar to Detention pond. One of the things that you should consider in this pond is its location. Its purpose is to collect runoff water. But unlike the retention, its water does not become stagnant in the pond. It has its own drainage system which makes it distribute the water back into the soil.


Defined by its name, a decorative pond’s purpose is to give the viewers a sense of wonderful and relaxing ambiance. It is usually built in areas that do not have too much run off. Its sole purpose is to give a compliment to the place. Because of this pond, the viewers can feel a more refreshing environment of the place.

Water Hazard

The purpose of this pond is to act as an obstacle in golf courses. Having this as an obstacle would give the players a little more challenging feeling throughout the game.

Where should the pond be placed?

Upon choosing what kind of pond are you going to have, you are now probably familiar where to place the pond in your vacant space.
If you have chosen a retention or detention pond, the most clever way to finalize its location is to wait for a downpour. Then, observe where the run off mostly stagnates. Thus, the next time it pours, your pond will be very useful since it has been on a perfect placement.

Meanwhile, if you are planning to make a decorative pond, then make sure to place its location in a highly trafficked and visible spot. Even if it is really tempting to place it near some trees, stop yourself. Just think how destructive the falling leaves might be in the future. Moreover, the animal waste can also add to the factor of creating a perfect habitat for the bottom rooted algae. You would not want to think of more hassle in the maintenance of your pond, right?

Another enticement seems to be a quick alternative – to place your pond over an unpleasant and unwanted vacant space. Again, do not be tempted. This is just a band-aid solution. It will cause you more problems in the future. It will exacerbate unnecessary expenses as the area might be susceptible to collapse and it might need to be refilled again.

Finally, make sure to build it near the electric supply. Or if not, then install an electric supply or connection near the site of the pond. Anticipate this so you won’t have problems and the project on your pond goes smoothly.

How will your pond be filled?

What would be your water source for this? Do you have a free flowing or stream to suffice the water supply for a refill? Or are you going to be runoff-dependent? There are some dialectics with these options for the benefits and function of your pond. But don’t worry because we will help you with your decision by providing the “what and why” answers to your questions.

The runoff water blatantly gives you more savings at the beginning. However, take note of the substances that add to the nutrient build up in the water. It will make the water cloudy, odorous hence, the water quality fluctuates. This will be disadvantageous to the shoreline where soil and plants will most definitely loosen, contributing to the sludge layer. On the other hand, if you are going to use a free-flowing stream for your pond, it will give you a constant water level which will prevent soil erosion especially on the shoreline of the pond. You might find it expensive at the start, but it will maintain the quality of the water. All the costs will be paid off. In the long run, you will find it beneficial, hassle free, and easy to maintain.

Is the soil sufficient?

Once you are sure where the general area of the pond will be, observe the quality of the soil. Make sure that it has low nutrients to prevent algae from habituating in your pond. Also, keep in mind that the soil should not be porous or else your pond will become an empty vacuum in no time.Take not of the soil’s Permeability Index (PI). If the soil has a PI level of 25-40, then it is the most desirable. If the soil falls below a PI level of 20, you will most likely have to line or seal the pond.

Take not of the soil’s Permeability Index (PI). If the soil has a PI level of 25-40, then it is the most desirable. If the soil falls below a PI level of 20, you will most likely have to line or seal the pond.

Pond Liners

There are generally four classifications of pond liners:


A clay liner is supposed to be at least two feet thick. This should be installed in 6-inch lifts then compressed. The thickness of the liner should be increased as the height or feet increases to ten.


Bentonite is considered as a type of clay which is labeled as premium core driller. It should be spread, disked rolled and compacted at 1 to 2 pounds per square foot upon the installation. When Bentonite dries, it is known to crack, which allows some water to seep. If your source of water for the pond is run off dependant, water fluctuations are more likely to affect this cracking.

Flexible Liners

If clay or Bentonite is not available, synthetic or rubber can be installed. Both might be long lasting, however, it should be immediately replaced once it starts to deteriorate over time.


This is the cheapest liner among the four. But it has the tendency to form its own expansion joints (minor cracks) over time. This must be monitored for any ground sinking possibilities underneath.

Take note that in using a pond liner, be sure to take groundwater into consideration and if present, you must include a drainage system to allow water to flow laterally under the lining. This underdrain prevents the liner from floating due to ground water or gas build up.

What is the correct shape and depth?

The form of your pond will directly impact the amount of maintenance needed in the long run. The ideal shape for a pond is circular (i.e. round, oval, oblong) contrasting to complex shapes such as kidney, long and thin shapes. While these unique pond shapes might be enticing, be cautioned that you will have to face problems in no time. The poor circulation of water might cause insect infestations and foul smelling and discolored water system.

Depth is one of the important factors which is often disregarded when you make a pond. If you build a pond that is too shallow, thermal stratification will take place during warm months especially without proper maintenance, you will encounter high clean-up expenses. The ideal depth range is at least 12 to 20 feet. Deeper depths would provide lake bottoms with restricted exposure to ultraviolet light from the sun which will prevent excessive algae and nutrient overload. The water temperature in deeper depths becomes much cooler which is very beneficial for the pond. It allows a greater amount of oxygen benefiting the fish and overall water quality.


Certain research and water management practices have stated that by building a gentle slope, it would provide a better public security. Therefore, it should be taken into consideration within every installation. The shallow shelf should encompass out of the edge from six (6) to ten (10) feet horizontally then drop off accurately at a minimum ratio of 3:1 to the maximum depth.

Slopes can be really beneficial since they stimulate for the planting of certain species of aquatic plants that nourish nutrients as they run into the water.

Flora and Fauna

Many unpleasant water conditions can be an effect of the drainage of your lake from fertilizers, grass clippings, and herbicides.
The good thing is there are various types of aquatic weeds that can be planted to serve as barriers around your pond perimeter. There are even several species of plants that can also float on the water. This serves as the umbrella that blocks UV rays and direct sunlight, that deters thermal stratification and rapid weed growth.

The giant “gold fish-like” breeds of fish are an ideal one that you can have in your pond. This kind of breed will slow down the growth of algae and they can be assets in getting rid of insects.

Type of maintenance program

Like the rest of your landscape, once your pond has been installed, you have to begin making a maintenance program. Using algaecides can be effective but it will not be environment-friendly. The usage of this can possibly create the accumulation of excess nutrients in the pond causing unpleasant smells and gloomy water.

Installing and aerating fountain would be a great idea for your pond. Whether the fountain would be elegant, or if it contains exciting spray patterns, or if you opt for a virtually undetectable diffused aerator, the effect for your water quality would still be the same. It would create a circular pattern, discouraging thermal stratification, it would prevent fish kills instigated by a shortage of dissolved oxygen, help aerobic bacteria break down nutrients, prevent mud from settling at the bottommost part of the pond, break up stagnant waters where mosquitoes breed and would keep the water clean as crystal clear.

Like a water fountain, surface spray aerators have a spray pattern and are predominantly popular among golf course owners, country club superintendents, and private homeowner associations. While they are very cost effective, they increase property values and add to the grandeur of your landscape. This end product can be expanded into the night with the addition of lights.

Whichever type of aerator system you choose, you are assured that you are not going to deal with so much extra work. Because aerating systems only need looking after and maintenance about every 3 to 5 years.

Conclusion about Landscape Ponds

No matter what kind of aquatic garden and landscape ponds you are planning to install, you can create it by yourself. But you can also seek and hire a landscape expert to install it for you. The assurance is that it will give peace and tranquillity to your place and property as well as to other organisms. Have fun with your aquatic endeavor.



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