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Any place can accommodate a water garden, even a simple balcony, as long as it is well exposed to natural light. The water garden is not difficult to achieve and gives anyone who observes it a great serenity.
Types of water gardens
If as an open space we only have a balcony, we can set up our water garden simply in a large container such as a barrel cut in half lengthwise.
In a city garden, on the other hand, to create our little overgrown area it is advisable to bury in the ground a glass fiber tank equipped with an electric pump that also gives rise to streams, waterfalls and fountains, which in addition to oxygenate the water give the garden a more natural appearance. Tap water is too cold for fish and also should not be wasted, so the pump also serves to recycle this precious asset.
In the countryside we can, using large sheets of resistant plastic, build actual lakes, possibly connected to one another by small waterfalls with a fiberglass or plastic-coated bottom. The use of concrete or concrete tanks that tend to fracture due to the settlement of the ground and the action of frost and thaw is not recommended. The smaller the pond, the smaller the seedlings that will adorn it.
Water garden design
At this point we can design the project of our water garden and then with the help of a rubber tube or a rope reproduce on the ground the real-size contour, which should preferably be roundish in shape as it looks more natural . We avoid placing the water garden under trees and bushes, from which leaves and flowers would fall which we should continually remove to prevent their decomposition from feeding the growth of algae, which would make the water smelly in a short time. To avoid the growth of algae it is also advisable to use oxygenating plants that subtract from them the mineral salts below the water surface and contribute to the health of all living creatures in the water. The water garden is also located near the sockets for water and electricity, in a sunny position. It is also advisable to calculate a quote, as the construction and subsequent maintenance of the water garden can be very expensive.
In principle, the aquatic plants suitable for deeper waters will be placed in the center of the pond, towards the shore the plants of smaller dimensions and along the contour plants that love humidity but not aquatic. The water must be clean and free for at least half of the surface from the vegetation, also to be able to see and feed more easily the fish that live there, which are useful to eliminate the larvae of mosquitoes, the eggs of snails and aphids and algae . Their droppings also fertilize the soil of the bottom.
Water garden made of fiberglass tub
We dig the hole a little bigger than the tank, we remove all the stones from the bottom, we press and we cover with sand. We position the tank by checking that it is perfectly horizontal with a spirit level. We fill the spaces between the tank and the inside of the hole with earth, always checking the level. At the end we pave the edge with stones and cement or sow a lawn.
Water garden made with plastic sheet
The most resistant material is the butylite which is designed to last about fifty years, while the polyethylene lasts about ten years. We calculate that the length and width of the material also depends on the depth of the pond. We dig a hole with non-steep walls and remove all the sharp stones, then cover the bottom and walls with sand. We spread the plastic sheet carefully, making it protrude at least twenty centimeters from the edge and hold it in place with the help of large stones. Enter the water and keep the level 15 centimeters from the edge, then remove the stones and cut the excess plastic along the perimeter of the pond. At the end we pave the edge.
Water gardens: How to place aquatic plants in the pond
Aquatic plants should not be placed too close together because many of them exhibit a very rapid development. The garden plants should be planted in plastic pots that serve to prevent excessive vegetation and hinder the transit of fish between the roots that would cloud the water. The containers should be lined with sackcloth and the oldest and darkest roots cut. The earth must be clayey, fertile and compact with the supplement of superphosphate and without the addition of organic material. When the plants are placed in the pots we cover the earth with a layer of gravel. The pond must then be filled to cover just the containers and then added as the plants grow.
Smaller plants should be placed near the banks, keeping the pots raised by bricks.
Oxygenating plants, essential for good fish health and for the elimination of carbon dioxide, have small roots that can be ballasted with pieces of galvanized sheet and simply let fall to the bottom of the pond. Alternatively, they can be planted in holes in pots that are then sunk into the water.
Floating plants that live just below the surface of the water and draw dissolved nourishment from it are simply left on the surface of the pond.
In the end with the addition of some pebbles, rock or amphora (never use sharp materials) on the bottom and some colored fish our pond will be perfect.