Without argument, some of the most beautiful gardens in the world comprise a water feature – notably a freshwater pond.
The gentle trickle of water over rock, the rich earthy smell of fertile earth, and the soft rustle of lush plant life hugging the edge of the pond creates a special kind of serenity. As humans, we are drawn to this sparkling oasis, with all its beauty and life.
If you have been toying with the idea of incorporating a pond in your garden, then we would encourage you to go with it. The benefits of a freshwater pond are numerous, and we can guarantee that it will give back to you in bucket loads.
What are the benefits of a freshwater pond?
On a purely practical level, a pond will save you money. How so? Many homeowners default to vast tracts of lawn in their garden, which looks great, but can be very thirsty. In the dry months we spend thousands of litres of water trying to keep our grass green, and in the wet months we spend a small fortune mowing, weeding, and edging. However, a freshwater pond requires very little maintenance and actually conserves water. Rainwater and roof runoff can be used to top up the pond when necessary, but besides that it requires no mowing, weeding, or edging.
A pond creates its own incredible ecosystem which benefits the whole garden in ways you may not consider. For example, the sludge collected from the pond filter (which is full of nutrients from degrading plant matter and fish droppings) can be used as a natural and highly efficient fertilizer in your garden. Those involved in growing their own veggies and herbs at home will love the fertile boost that this adds to your soil.
A fresh and clean water source will also attract local wildlife, such as frogs, birds, and insects. Tadpoles are excellent for controlling algae, which can be the bane of a pond-owner’s life. And they take care of undesirable insects (such as mosquitoes), which are invariably attracted to a water source.
A well-constructed freshwater pond will provide a breeding sanctuary for these indigenous creatures. For example, it would include a shallow section for amphibians and perhaps wading birds if the size allows. The pond edge would include fully and partially submerged plants which provide shade, food, and shelter. Adding rocks, branches, and bark provides additional food and cover for small animals.
A freshwater pond provides drinking water during the dry months, as well as plant-based food for our terrestrial wildlife too. When you consider how urban growth has impacted our wildlife here in South Africa, adding a small oasis for these displaced animals is a kind and environmentally friendly road to take.
Setting up a pond – even a small one – requires a little knowhow and some time and effort. Pool Spa have enjoyed creating the magic that freshwater ponds bring to a home, and we’d love to help you with yours. Give us a call on +27 11 793 1381 or take a look at our beautiful ponds at www.poolspa.co.za.