Friday, 3 June 2011

Digging the pond

Ever since we took on the allotment we planned to put in a pond. We want to encourage frogs onto the allotment so they can eat the bugs, slugs and snails. A pond will also give us the opportunity to grow larger quantities of plants such as water cress. We grow some in a pot in a tray of water at the moment but a pond will give us much much more. In addition, when we get the bees, they will need a water source. Today, the pond digging was completed. We had dug through the top soil to a depth of about 30cm. At that point we hit a layer of thick, heavy clay (typical for this area). That's when the heavy duty work really got going. I had to use a pick axe to dig my way down.

Digging started over a couple of weeks ago and then I had to go to London to do some filming for the Horticultural Channel. The work therefore took longer than I initially planed. However, with digging completed, today we put in the underlay and the pond liner. Now comes another big task: getting it filled with water. We have no mains supply on the allotment and with no rai at the moment, all water has had to be brought over from the house in water carriers. We are expecting to take a few days to bring over sufficient.

The pond itself is 2m by 2m. The ledge around the edge is around 30com deep. In the centre of the pond is a deeper section about 50cm deep.

pond May 11
This was the start of the pond. At this point we had dug through the top soil though there was still a bit further to go before we hit the clay layer.

pond June 11 2
This is David in the pond this morning before the lining went in. He is filling in a gap with some soft earth to ensure the bottom and sides are as smooth as possible. Note the brownish colour of the clay.

pond June 11 3
This photo was taken after the underlay (it was like a soft blanket and protects the liner) and the liner were added.

pond June 11 4
Stones and bricks were added around the side to weigh down the liner.

pond June 11 5
Sufficient water has been added to fill about two-thirds of the deeper centre of the pond. At this point we took the stones off temporarily to allow the liner to settle. The water could then drag in the liner to make it fit snugly in the hole.

More water will be transported over to the allotment over coming days and we will be getting some pond plants shortly.


elfriide tramm said...

huh, i remember my pond-digging a couple of years ago. i softened if with 5cm layer of rockwool (leftovers from housebuilding). this year seems to be a pond-year - some of my friends have built ponds but my parents made an absolute crown to this issue - their new pond is appr 20 m x 10 m and the lowest stair is appr 2 m deep. now the planting is on it's peak.

elfriide tramm said...

and this poly-tunnel - do you have some special kit for it? i used regular water pipes for doing it, but had a difficulties with normal look.

Nicole Martin said...

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