Aaron Burchett, owner of PondMarket, was asked by the St. Louis Water Gardening Society to deliver a presentation focusing on low maintenance pond installation techniques PondMarket has developed over the past 17 years. Below is a recap of the presentation given at the January 2015 St. Louis Water Gardening Society meeting.

Presentation recap narrative written by, Carolyn Haus; republished from “Water Word“, St. Louis Water Gardening Society Newsletter, February 2015.

Constructing a Low Maintenance Pond

The program explained the key elements of low maintenance pond construction. Aaron shared these four key points, so your pond will be a basically maintenance free and enjoyable water feature:

Low-Maintenance-Koi-Pond-ConstructionFirst—Proper excavation:
Make sure that the finished pond is slightly higher than the surrounding
area to avoid water runoff going into the pond. The pond should be deep enough (2-3 feet) for plants, fish and other aquatic animals to have adequate water. When building koi ponds, the ideal depth is 4-6 feet. Keep in mind safe approaches and pond cleaning.

Second—Proper waterfall installation.
Poorly constructed waterfalls can be the demise of the nicest of ponds due to poor excavation, improper liner installation, and poor placement of stones. If a separate piece of liner is used for the waterfall / stream, seam the stream liner to the pond’s liner to avoid water wicking and leaks.

Third—Skimmer systems.
Koi-Pond-Skimmer-SystemToday’s skimmer systems require less daily attention. Skimmer systems are comprised of a main pond skimmer, a satellite skimmer and a bottom drain, all of which rely on one pump. Skimmer systems triple the number of areas that pumps can draw from, enhancing filtration system performance, reducing skimmer maintenance, and eliminating pump failure due to lack of water.

Fourth—Filtration systems.
Low maintenance filter systems consist of a high quality pressurized filter, a
UV sterilizer, an ionizer, and a skimmer system. Pond water stays crystal clear and there is minimal manual labor involved in maintenance. Upkeep
costs with this type of system are minimal too. Aaron’s presentation was enjoyable and informative. I look forward to implementing his suggestions in our water feature.

Carolyn Haus

Carolyn Haus is a St. Louis area hobbyist and St. Louis Water Gardening Society Member