Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The building of a pond

A water feature is a nice thing to have when you live in a compact neighborhood. So, prior to our move, I started investigating, fountains, ponds, waterfalls and every other type of water feature. I had decided on a small, pondless water feature as our new house has more of a back patio than a back yard; it is only 40 feet long by 13 feet wide.

The goal was low maintenance; Jim said he was not moving the lawn mower. I was concerned we would be left wit a concrete slab or decorative rock. The developer had "back yard tours" to see what others had done with the small spaces.

They seemed unimaginative. As most landscapers had suggested to me, there were patios with retaining walls or patios with concrete sitting walls or maybe a small patch of grass. Most reminded me of property in the desert. I wanted more of a mountain retreat. There had to be a way to do it.

Shasta College Community Education to the rescue. I enrolled in a landscape design class. Our pondless water feature turned into a a three level waterfall - with a nine foot stream flowing into a Koi pond. The pond has a 3 foot culvert tunnel, buried underground, so the Koi can hide from predators.

I would have never thought about doing a feature that large in a such a small space without the encouragement of the instructor. He said it could actually make the space look larger.

The next decision was to put in artificial turf - no, not astro turf. It has long blades, more like the turf at Big League Dreams. We actually paid more to have 'dead' brown and yellow blades mixed in with the green to make it more realistic -seriously. We are so happy with the results, no mowing, no watering and it always looks great. The grass is bordered by flowers, ground cover and my mini -vegetable garden.

This is a new hobby for me. I have never liked gardening or working outdoors. Of course, having cool mornings and evenings makes a huge difference. Still, it surprises me how much I enjoy checking on the Koi in the morning, feeding them at night and plucking a weed out of the borders here and there.
Having coffee outside watching the Koi is icing on the cake.


  1. Anyone moving a small load over a long distance could consider load sharing to reduce their costs.

    We are not discussing the larger national companies whose niche in the market is certainly 'expensive' (and whose branded image may or may not live up to customer's expectations). Neither are we talking about whole residences, or expensive, specialist items or complicated jobs.

  2. Lets hear it for Shasta college classes and your fine job!