Ponds and Ecosystem Ponds
Back to Nature Ponds can help design the perfect pond to fit your landscape, lifestyle and budget. There are several standard- sized pond kits available to choose from, including, the 4' x 6' micropond®, 6' x 8' micropond®, 8' x 11' small pond, 11' x 16' medium pond or a large 21' x 26' pond. Back to Nature Ponds can also custom design any size or shaped pond that you desire.
Small 8 x 11 Pond
Medium 11 x 16 Pond
Large 11 x 26 Pond
Most everyone has seen a pond or lake before. Did you ever stop to wonder who feeds the fish in that pond or lake? Who cleans and treats the water? Who performs the maintenance? Mother Nature, that's who! A pond or lake in nature operates as a self-sustaining ecosystem. Ecosystem ponds can be easy to understand if you have a good grasp of the basic components that are required for a properly functioning ecosystem. An ecosystem pond works with Mother Nature to provide food, shelter and safety to the wildlife around it. It also provides you with an all-natural, low-maintenance piece of paradise.
In order to have a naturally balanced, self-sustaining ecosystem pond, there are a few essential elements that you must have in place. If one of these elements is missing, you will not have a balanced, healthy, successful ecosystem. Having an unbalanced ecosystem will result in more maintenance for you and thus, less time enjoying your pond. Using Mother Nature to your advantage will help you maintain a low-maintenance, naturally-balanced, self-sustaining ecosystem without the use of chemicals.
Check out these "MUST HAVES" for any healthy ecosystem pond:
Circulation & Filtration
Circulation is a very important component to a successful ecosystem pond. The circulation system basically consists of the pipes and plumbing. The proper size pump and pipe diameter are extremely important for the aesthetics of a water feature. A pond is a living, breathing ecosystem that needs constant oxygen, just like humans. An efficient circulation system keeps the water moving and provides the necessary oxygen levels for healthy fish and plants.
Filtration is a vital and necessary part of any ecosystem pond. A proper filtration system includes the use of both a biological and mechanical filter. A biological filter provides surface area for beneficial bacteria to colonize and removes excess nutrients from the water. A mechanical filter will not only pre-filter the water and house the pump, but it will also skim debris from the water's surface to prevent the accumulation of organic materials on the pond floor. Proper filtration will keep your pond water crystal clear.
Aquatic plants are Mother Nature's true filters. Plants are great for adding character to a pond by providing color and texture, but from a filtration perspective, they are second to none. Thriving from excess nutrients in a pond and depriving algae of its food source, the aquatic plants in the water garden, given proper coverage, are critical for the overall health of the ecosystem. Marginal plants can be planted directly in the gravel. Their roots will spread throughout the gravel, cleaning the pond by using nutrients and growing vigorously.
Although your pond will water your aquatic plants for you, they still need occasional trimming and other attention. Water lilies and lotus, among other fast growing aquatics, require repotting just about every year. This will ensure that they have room for new growth, and along with monthly fertilization will keep them looking their best. Dead growth should be removed to prevent it from fouling the pond water.
Fish & Aquatic Animals
Fish are an integral part of any pond ecosystem. They are not only important to your pond's overall health, but they also make great pets. Fish will actually reduce pond maintenance, by grazing on string algae and bottom feeding from the pond floor. Basically, fish help to keep the alage in check. One of the other things that is so wonderful about welcoming fish into your pond is that they are pretty low maintenance. Fish live, breathe and eat in the exact same place.... your pond. They truly are one of the most low-maintenance pets you can have.
In addition to fish, ponds and water gardens attract other creatures, providing a sanctuary for breeding. Frogs, especially, gather at the pond as it provides a shelter for reproducing in the spring and summer. Baby frogs and toads (known as tadpoles) are generally a desirable pond inhabitant for their algae-eating habits. Adult toads are also beneficial to water gardens for their aid in controlling insects.
Rocks, Gravel & Bacteria
Rocks and Gravel are an integral part of any pond ecosystem. Natural rocks and gravel also help to give your pond a more natural appearance, as if created by Mother Nature, herself. Rocks and gravel are not only beautiful to look at, but they also help protect the pond liner from UV rays and damage from sharp objects. Rocks and gravel reduce maintenance by reducing pond muck build-up. They also provide tremendous surface area for beneficial bacteria to break down excess nutrients in the water and dissolved organic debris on the pond floor.
Beneficial Bacteria naturally balances the pond. Beneficial bacteria helps maintain a strong biological balance, providing clean, clear and healthy water conditions. You can purchase beneficial bacteria to add to your pond to ensure healthy levels.