What are Preformed Garden Ponds?
Adding a garden pond to your yard is one of the easiest ways to give your yard “something special”. A perfect way to create a pond, even if you don’t have much experience working with water features, is to use a preformed pond.
Preformed ponds are simply a hard liner that is molded into a specific shape.
Most are made of either a very strong plastic or of fiberglass. They are sold online or at local home improvement or garden stores. One of the main reasons that people choose preformed ponds over traditional liners is that they are better suited to soft soil conditions.
There are a few things you should know before you begin working that will make installing your pond a breeze.
Choosing the Best Location for a Preformed Pond
Finding the right location in your yard for a pond is the first thing you must do. Next, the size of the pond. You need to examine the relationship it will have to the rest of the yard – small ponds look good in small yards, while larger water features are better for big yards.
Preformed ponds come in a range of sizes from two or three feet to those that are far larger. There are many different shapes available, so you should be able to find one that works for you and for your yard.
If possible, a good place for a pond is one that is free from shrubs and bushes and one that gets a lot of natural sunlight.
If you chose a spot near trees the downside is you will always be cleaning out debris that falls into the pond. Avoiding trees also means that you are less likely to encounter tree roots that may damage your pond.
When you have picked a spot for your pond, move the liner to the area you have chosen and see how it looks. You can also spend some time turning the pond (most of them have an irregular shape) to find the best look.
Introduction (Before) Installing Preformed Ponds
Installing a pond isn’t a difficult job, but it is better if you have a little help.
Start by digging a hole large enough for the pond. You will need to ensure that the bottom of the pond is perfectly flat and is seated on a bed of soft sand; otherwise, your pond could crack when you fill it. Once you have done this, fill it with a garden hose, and wow!
When the pond is full, before you put plants etc in it, allow it to sit for several days so that it can settle into the hole and check for any issues with the liner and the installation. Preformed ponds offer a great home for plants and for fish. Local pet shops and garden supply shops should be able to help you select and make the best choice.
Plants and fish will be a very important part of your new pond because they help keep it clean and looking good.
Transforming Your Yard with a Pre-Formed Pond Liner
Preformed pond liners are the perfect way to make any outdoor area more beautiful. They are easy to install and maintain, and they are an instant focal point in any yard. They can be landscaped to match any home, and you can even add features like plants, rocks, or waterfalls and fountains.
Preformed ponds are a particularly good choice for anyone that does not have experience with pond installation. Preformed ponds come packaged as a kit with everything needed for installation.
The difference between a preformed pond and a pond liner is the preformed cannot be customized. They are available in a number of different shapes and sizes.
Most preformed ponds hold up to 150 gallons of water.
Why Preformed Ponds are Easier
Using a preformed pond will definitely save a great deal of time since they come fully packaged and are easier to install than a flexible liner. A preformed pond liner can be critical for keeping your pond in good health over time.
Look for the pond you would like to purchase on the internet and have it delivered to your home. Preformed ponds are produced from fiberglass material or hard plastics.
The average life expectancy of fiberglass ponds is 20 years.
Most preformed ponds come with a 20-year warranty. The lifespan of these ponds can be increased with regular cleaning using a pond vacuum.
Installing a Preformed Garden Pond
One of the most important tasks to do when installing a preformed pond is leveling the ground.
Keep in mind you want to have the hole the same shape as the pond. The supplies you will need in order to install the pond is a shovel, hand tamper, wheelbarrow, power source, water source, rock selection, mulch, sand, and topsoil. It is highly recommended you have a licensed electrician prepare the electrical source.
It is critical the hole for the pond is 2 inches deeper than the pond itself. Remove any roots, rocks, and debris after the hole is completed. Add one to two inches of sand to the hole. The edge of the pond should be 2 to 3 inches above ground level.
The weight of the water will cause the pond to sit deeper into the ground. The idea is to avoid debris and dirt from flowing into the pond. Add sand about halfway up the lip of the pond.
Next, you can start adding water to the pond. At the same time start filling in the hole with sand. It is strongly recommended that you do not add plants to the pond for at least 48 hours after filling with water.
Remove the chlorine from the water if you plan on adding fish. Also, condition the water before adding fish to the pond.
Some of the extra accessories you may be interested in for your new pond are a skimmer, rock lid, biological filter, waterfall stone, and solar rock lights. The skimmer removes debris from the surface of the water and deposits it into the bag. This helps keep the pond clean. The biological filter will not be seen since the waterfall will cover it. Live bacteria are stored in the filter in order to keep the pond clean.
A good preformed pond to consider is the Beckett Water Garden – Model #PPK42. The kit includes a 600 gallon/hour pump and filters. The preformed pond is a 42-gallon unit.
Another great example of preformed pond kits is the Algren 30 gallon kit. An added feature to this pond is the textured ridges it has to allow the pond to form beneficial bacteria.
Step-by-Step Instructions for Installing A Preformed Pond Kit
Pick a spot for your pond that receives 4 to 6 hours of daily sunlight.
Place the pond at the desired location. With a piece of chalk outline the perimeter area of the preformed pond.
Make sure to dig the hole slightly larger than the marked area.
Remove any debris from the hole such as rocks, large clumps of dirt, and other debris that may interfere with leveling the ground.
Cover the bottom of the hole with a 1-inch layer of sand.
Place the pond in the designated hole. Be sure the soil is about 2 inches below the lip of the pond. This will prevent water from running off into your pond.
Now install the pump according to the enclosed instructions. The pond should be placed just a bit above ground level. As you begin to fill your pond with water, start filling the areas around the pond with the remainder of the sand.
Check the level of the pond frequently in case the pond should shift positions. Be sure the soil is tightly packed around the pond for maximum support.
These instructions apply to most preformed garden ponds.