Author Topic: Wildlife pond  (Read 797 times)

davholla

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Wildlife pond
« on: February 06, 2018, 08:29:58 »
The pond is 1.72m long, 1.2 m wide and .69 m deep.
The surface area is 2 m squared (probably a bit less as it is not a rectangle).
Is this big enough?  This is scenario A
Width wise I have 1.93 meters to the raspberry bed (so can only add 30 cm that way).
Lengthwise I have 0.6 m to the first branches of the apple tree and 1m to the gooseberries so I only have .3m each way.
So the maximum I could have is 2.32 by 1.5 giving 3.48 ms squared, scenario B
However I think that is too big - and I am fed up with digging and mess.  I could add a shallow shelf 10 cm to the width and 10 cm to back.  Or maybe slightly less  this is scenario C
A) Is ok now or would scenario C be a lot better?

I attach a photo, this will only have wildlife and is in South London
Pond IMG_0292 by davholla2002, on Flickr

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Wildlife pond
« on: February 06, 2018, 08:29:58 »

Obelixx

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2018, 13:22:48 »
I'd go a bit deeper if you can as in the depths of winter cold, water temperatures are only stable at 60cms and more.  By the time you've lined that with sand or stone proof protector fibre to protect the butyl or plastic liner you have almost no safe depth left.  It's important for hibernating underwater critters in their larval stage. 

Otherwise the size is fine but if you intend to grow marginal plants in baskets (easier to control and prevent invasions) you'll need a shelf around some or all of the sides.
Obxx - Vendée France

davholla

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2018, 13:46:55 »
I'd go a bit deeper if you can as in the depths of winter cold, water temperatures are only stable at 60cms and more.  By the time you've lined that with sand or stone proof protector fibre to protect the butyl or plastic liner you have almost no safe depth left.  It's important for hibernating underwater critters in their larval stage. 

Otherwise the size is fine but if you intend to grow marginal plants in baskets (easier to control and prevent invasions) you'll need a shelf around some or all of the sides.
  Thanks for that, I will have to do some more digging.  I hope it stays dry for a few more weekends.

PondDragon

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2018, 21:12:26 »
I'd go a bit deeper if you can as in the depths of winter cold, water temperatures are only stable at 60cms and more.
Ignore this advice - it's completely unnecessary. It's London, not a Scottish mountaintop. 30 or 40 cm depth would be fine. Maximising the surface area is more important than depth (indeed, deeper is not better when it comes to ponds). Native aquatic insects are perfectly well able to cope with winter cold.

davholla

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2018, 21:59:11 »
I'd go a bit deeper if you can as in the depths of winter cold, water temperatures are only stable at 60cms and more.
Ignore this advice - it's completely unnecessary. It's London, not a Scottish mountaintop. 30 or 40 cm depth would be fine. Maximising the surface area is more important than depth (indeed, deeper is not better when it comes to ponds). Native aquatic insects are perfectly well able to cope with winter cold.
That is what I thought, although everyone else has said something like that as well (including people living in London).
Sadly I have not got much more space, I can add enough 30 cm to one side for a shallow shelf.

I am quite anxious about this because I used to have a pond that I loved with dragonfly nymphs etc, then 5 years ago an idiot persuaded my wife that he was trained in gardening and moved it, it leaked, it was in shade and never recovered from the leak.  I am really hoping that I can have another pond which is good.
Are you sure?  I

Obelixx

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2018, 22:44:55 »
The RHS knows a thing or two about wildlife ponds and advises shelves for marginal plants and a centre depth of 60cm to suit most plants and creatures - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=622   Have a read and see what you think but at depths of less than 60cms the water will freeze to quite a depth in a bad winter and there will be a shortage of oxygen for hibernating critters.   It will also stay cooler in hot weather and be less prone to algae bloom.

London is not immune form cold spells and certainly gets hot in summer.   Best, in my opinion, to get it right from the start and not live with regrets and constant tweaking.
Obxx - Vendée France

davholla

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2018, 08:35:02 »
The RHS knows a thing or two about wildlife ponds and advises shelves for marginal plants and a centre depth of 60cm to suit most plants and creatures - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?PID=622   Have a read and see what you think but at depths of less than 60cms the water will freeze to quite a depth in a bad winter and there will be a shortage of oxygen for hibernating critters.   It will also stay cooler in hot weather and be less prone to algae bloom.

London is not immune form cold spells and certainly gets hot in summer.   Best, in my opinion, to get it right from the start and not live with regrets and constant tweaking.

Thanks for that, I do have 69 cm deep. 

davholla

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Re: Wildlife pond
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2018, 13:48:35 »
I have now finished digging and filled in the pond (it is about 88cm deep).
Any advice on plants?  I have read on line but any extra advice would be great.