Backyard Watering Gardens In South Florida

How to Construct Backyard Water Gardens

Backyard Watering Gardening In South Florida--fish-pond
A Fish Pond

Installing a backyard water garden is a great way to connect with nature while enjoying your outdoor living space, creating a garden of this sort not only says home sweet home but also provides a natural habitat for wildlife and beneficial insects that will positively impact our ecosystem. The sound and the sights of trickling water can do much in helping to relieve stress as we kick back and relax in our garden oasis.

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These special gardens are popular and have grown over the years, what I love about water gardens is they vary from fish ponds to lily ponds, wildlife ponds, and even water features that are easy to install for example birdbaths.

A backyard water garden can be as big as you want or even middle-sized to miniature, what makes these ponds so great is no matter how little the space you can have a water garden that fits on your balcony, porch, or patio so there is something for everyone.

In this discussion, we will be taking a closer look at the construction of these gardens from the somewhat complex to those that are very simple and can be installed in a matter of minutes. If your desire is to enhance your garden or outdoor living space with one of these gardens then continue reading to see how it is done.

Constructing and In-Ground Water Pond

Constructing in ground water pond can be very exciting but these gardens call for planning because the goal is to reap the rewards of the time and the money that you invest.

Tools for Constructing an In-Ground Water Pond

Backyard Water Gardens In South Florida-a-frog-resting
A Frog Resting

Locating Your Fish Pond

The area of your pond should get at least partial sun, a pond that’s installed under tall trees can become a tedious job of trying to keep clean. If fallen leaves are allowed to remain will not only build up but can become soggy which will lead to a build-up of dirt that is not healthy especially if it’s a fish pond. A buildup of debris left unchecked can clog pond parts.

  • Once you have found the location to install your fish pond mark the area with the garden hose or the rope, provided you have the space your water garden can be to your desired size.
  • Use spray paint or chalk to mark the area where you place the garden hose or the rope.
  • Now remove the garden hose, you should have a perfectly marked area.
  • With your spade shovel follow the marked pattern by removing the dirt.
  • Dig to the depth you desire, the holes should be deep enough to receive and hold a good amount of water. Remember as you go down go out as well as you remove the dirt. The measuring tape can be used to measure the desired depth and width of your water garden.
  • The Level or a straight piece of plank wood can be used to ensure that the pond is level on all sides.
  • Place the skimmer in the corner of the pond, and make sure that the top of the skimmer is at ground level. A level can help with this,  the job of a skimmer is to remove debris that falls or gets blown into your pond.
  • Now position the underlayment in the hole, and with the scissors cut the layment to completely cover the bottom of the pond, place rubber in the hole liner in the hole. The extra liner that’s left allow it to remain at the edges of the pond. This will ensure that the liner in the pond stays in place.
  • Use silicone and go around the skimmer. Before attaching the rubber liner to the skimmer, make sure that the liner is firm. If there is any wrinkle or extra play in the liner expect to have a leak that spells trouble. Make sure there is no wrinkle or extra play, now attach a rubber liner to the skimmer. Then attach your faceplate and bolt it down. Next, remove the liner from the faceplate by cutting the liner away.
  • Use a few rocks, placing them strategically around the edges of the pond to help keep the liner in place and also to hide the skimmer. Remember to leave the faceplate open. This area should not be blocked by rocks.  According to the size of your pond place rocks edge to edge going around the entire pond. These rocks will not only hold the liner in place but will give the pond a natural look.
  • Installing your pump- Next is the installation of the pump. The job of a pond pump is to circulate water throughout the entire pond. Make sure that you choose the right size pump because pumps have a huge demand ensuring that water flows correctly, so choose the right pump. If you are not sure you can always talk it over with your salesperson during the purchase. Allow water to run in the pond until the bottom is covered, then place the pump at the bottom of the pond. To send water to the filter attach hoses to the pump.
  • Place the filter box in a container, the container can be hidden with plants, rocks, or small logs to give the pond area a more natural look. The container can be placed on the side of the pond. Give a good space or distance between the filter and the pump. The wire is connected to the power source by running wires through a PVC pipe underground from the filter to the power source. Followed by connecting both the inlet and the outlet hoses. Make sure to use hose clamps as you make the connection. These hoses can be hidden out of sight by using plants or rocks.
  • You can now add the plants and your fish. Here are a few names of pond plants that can be added to your water garden, waterlilies, water lettuce, creeping Jenny pond plant, blue Iris, cardinal flower, pickerel plant, taro pond plants, Mosaic pond plant, horsetail reed, sweet flag etc….

How to Construct a Simple Mini Pond

With this simple yet beautiful project here is what to do.

  • You can either choose an old kitchen sink, a large plant pot, a washing-up bowl, or a garden trug.
  • Choose an area that gets partial sunlight, and place your container there. You have the choice of leaving the container on the soil’s surface or burying it a bit for creatures to get in and out of it.
  • Place some gravel in the container, a layer or so will do.
  • What can also help small creatures get in and out of your mini pond easily is to line the sides or make little steppings with sticks rocks wood, gravel, etc…
  • Now fill the container with water preferably rainwater, if you don’t have rainwater only tap water then allow the water to sit for at least 24 hours for all the chlorine to evaporate.
  • Only add aquatic plants that are native, make sure to include submerged pondweed, because this pondweed will help to keep the water clear. Some plants to include in your mini water garden are flowering rush, lesser spearwort, starwort, or miniature waterlily.
  • In a few months, you should have visitors to your pond for example dragonflies, toads, frogs, damselflies, hedgehogs, and bats.

How to Construct a Water Garden From a Birdbath

Constructing a mini pond from a birdbath will take you minutes even under an hour to be exact.

  • All this involves is placing the birdbath in an area that gets full to partial sunlight. The birdbath can either be a bath where the water does not flow but to attract or get the attention of birds and wildlife quickly including insects I would install a birdbath where the water is always moving.
  • Fill  the birdbath with water
  • Next at the base of the birdbath install grasses and plants that grow along a pond or the installation of fountain grass will help to enhance the appearance of a water garden. Use about 2-3 species of grasses around the birdbath. Now in between the grass add river rocks.
  • In no time you will have birds and other wildlife visiting your mini water garden.

Mini Pond Kits

There are mini pond kits that can be purchased and positioned on your patio, porch, or balcony that look so amazing, visit your online store for the purchase price.

The final word on backyard water gardens in South Florida

Installing a water garden is a game changer that will bring much change to your outdoor living space, these gardens can be as big or small depending on your desire. There are many in which to choose and will bring much excitement not only to adults but kids as well. Encourage the presence of wildlife with one of these gardens, I promise you will be so happy with the results as you watch wildlife in these habitats.


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About the author

+ posts

Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

2 thoughts on “Backyard Watering Gardens In South Florida”

  1. Hey Norman it’s great to be back at this awesome site. I like how you said that a backyard water garden is a great way to connect with nature which is so incredibly healthy ànd meditative. It can be very time consuming to go out of town but a backyard water garden is immediate and affordable. 

    • Hello Jake, backyard watering gardens are so amazing and offers so much. I love these types of gardens and would encourage anyone to install one no matter how small. These gardens can even be placed on a balcony, porch or patio. Thanks for your kind words as always and all the best to you!


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