A simple water feature can make a large impact even in small spaces. The addition of a container water garden will transform, beautify and diversify your existing garden into an oasis that brings relief during the dog days of summer and beyond. Sit back, relax and enjoy the melodious sound of dancing water from your garden pond, and it will provide soothing, background music to your summer retreat. Bring wildlife into the garden by incorporating fish, frogs and snails into your mini aquascape. A simple water feature may be placed in the garden, on a deck, patio or porch or even added to a rooftop garden for a tremendous impact in a tiny space.
Choosing a Container
Container water gardens can be created from practically anything that has the capability of holding water or supporting a liner. Ceramic sinks or tubs, half-barrels, buckets, pottery or planters and troughs can all be used to create beautiful ponds. Remember, these features will look their best when the shape and materials are similar in style to that of your home and surrounding gardens.
Lining Your Container
If you have chosen a whiskey barrel or other similar wood container, follow these simple instructions to incorporate a liner to waterproof the container.
Rigid pond liners are also available to insert into half whiskey barrels for ease of waterproofing these containers, but double check sizes to be sure you choose the right fit.
With such a wide assortment available, pots and planters make great garden ponds when properly prepared.
Properly lined, your container will hold water easily without slow leaks that can traumatize plants and destroy your water garden.
The use of aquatic plants will help you avoid the need for algaecides by reducing pond algae in two ways. First, aquatic plants remove excess phosphorus and nitrogen from the water. Second, plants shade the water from sunlight, thereby inhibiting algae growth. For a healthy balance, cover half of your pond surface with floating plants for shading. Submerged plants should be planted at a rate of one bunch, 6-10 plants, for every 5 square feet of surface area. Marginal or bog plants will complete the ecological balancing act.
Be careful not overwhelm your container water garden with too many plants or it will be difficult to maintain a natural balance.
Fish and Other Pond Life
Different types of wildlife will love to be a part of even a small water garden.
Water Garden Container Care
Several common problems can occur even in small water gardens, but they are easily controlled and you can keep your water garden looking beautiful.
Check the pond weekly. You need to be observant to animal activity and any abnormal growths or marks. Inspect plants and fish for health, insects or disease. Clean up any dead or yellowing foliage. Replace evaporated water as necessary. If your water contains chlorine or other chemicals, be sure they are removed before adding this water to your pond. Chlorine is toxic to fish and beneficial bacteria. Chlorine will dissipate after a few days if it is exposed to air, but do not add fish or plants until after this is accomplished.
With just a little thoughtful planning, the right plants and proper care, you can have a small water garden to brighten up a small space in your yard.