Water features and ponds in particular have greatly improved in the last 10 years. Improvement in UV stable pond liners, pumping and filtering systems, waterproofing membranes and composite materials have all helped ameliorate and increase the design possibilities.
Ponds have an aesthetic value, a cooling effect and the sound of water helps reduce background noise. They also have an educational value to adults and children alike through their environmental benefits. This is a trend that is on the increase as people are becoming aware of the loss of natural habitats.
A pond in a garden will attract amphibians, dragon flies and small birds. They will, of course, also attract mosquitos but, with the correct choice of fish, the larvae deposited in the water will be eaten and have in some instances contributed to the overall reduction of mosquito in a garden.
A pond can be beautifully designed and built but it will really become a thing of wonder with the correct plant choice for the size and position of the pond. A successful pond will be one that has achieved a balanced eco-system in and around the pond. Ideally the pond, if large enough, will have plants that thrive at different water levels. The shape of the pond will also influence the water temperature and its success. A shallow vase shaped pond will increase the risk of algae growth by increasing the amount of sunlight and heat transfer.
When residential clients are thinking of a pond, to be able to design the one most suited to their needs and their lifestyle I always ask why do they want a pond and what does their ideal pond look like.
Remember that children in particular are attracted to water, so make it beautiful but most importantly keep it safe.
About Patrick Regnault
I have worked in the horticultural and landscaping industry for over 35 years in three different countries.I am a member and Registered Horticulturist with the Australian Institute of Horticulture and member of the Housing Industry Association. I am the owner of Interactive Landscapes, a successful structural landscaping and landscape design business. I believe that what gardens and gardening do is to reconnect people with the fundamental elements of nature. A good gardener will try and acquire a profound understanding of the balance of nature and endeavour to do the best to improve the environment in which the garden is situated. At Interactive Landscapes it is a philosophy that we put into practice when designing and creating a garden, no matter the size. Our name reflects this as we understand that gardens are a place of interaction. View all posts by this author »