When I planned the development of my new and almost empty plot, I did not forget to leave room for a pond. Creating a full-fledged "bathing" pond, in which the water will be purified not by chemistry, but with the help of various aquatic plants, requires a lot of expenses - both labor and finance. Therefore, for the time being, this case is postponed in a "long box" (there are more priority tasks). But the thought of at least a small pond has not given me peace. I thought of various options, but the decision, as often happens, came unexpectedly. In this article I tell you about how I made a mini pond on my site.
Selection of a reservoir for a mini- pond
I once walked around the building supermarket on my repair and household needs and I came across racks of technical containers. These containers are black, made of durable plastic, they are designed for mixing all kinds of building materials: sand, cement, glue ...
They have suitable volumes, there are 30 and 60 liters. I found the maximum - 90 liters. Shape, too, different. There are rectangular. I chose a round. Despite the, in general, the impressive size of such a "basin", I safely brought it home on an ordinary bus.
Location for a small pond
Location for his first pond did not have to look long. According to the rules, it must be as open to the sun as possible and not have deciduous trees nearby. I had such a "piece" and I did not know what to do with it. It always overgrew with weeds, no matter how much you fight it.
I have one good "secret": if you want to defeat weeds, you must make the place interesting, beautiful, then the weeds do not have a single chance. After all, to maintain this beauty you do not have to force yourself. So, a mini pond and had to become the beginning of beautification of this piece of my site.
Pit for "basin"
First, you need to dig a hole on the size of our "basin". It seems to be easy, but there are a couple of nuances. I have sandy soil and crumbles easily, so the shovel was chosen by the basic soil, and then had to act carefully - with a mini-trowel.
Strongly deepen the container in the ground is not necessary, because the low edge of the side will not keep from leaking earth during rain or snow melting. Therefore, we dig in, slightly elevated above the soil level. It is desirable that the bottom of the container evenly over its entire area rested on an earth pad.
Fortunately, the can on the bottom has convex concentric circles, peculiar ribs of rigidity, which leave clearly visible marks on the bottom of the hole. It is immediately obvious where the pelvis stands on the ground and where the void beneath its bottom is. Dosyaschaya and removing the soil, achieving an even footprint over the entire area.
The next and very important - the container should be set with a level strictly horizontally. It seems a trifle, but if you do not do this, then it will be annoying. When the pit was ready, put finally tank, filled with water, and all the voids around filled with earth and poured water a few times.
Framing of mini-pool
That's, actually, all! But as you know, the beauty is in the details. A basin, buried in the ground ... What's beautiful? He needs a frame. Since I have a budget option, I used an old brick (and not necessarily a whole).
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With a well tamped soil around the tank poured a thin layer of gravel and sand, and on top of laid bricks (whole and splinters). I put them not tightly, but with a gap of about 2 cm or more, pour water on them and let them settle. Since the shape of masonry in my curves, as a formwork used strips of linoleum. Then, I poured all the seams with liquid sand-cement mortar. The excess mortar was removed from the surface of the brick with a horizontally directed stream of water under pressure.
Important point:brick is not laid strictly horizontally, but with a slight slope from the tank. I hope you understand why? Again, so that the earth and debris washed away not into the basin, but away from it. Such a brick frame makes it easy to maintain the pond, rather than trampling on dirt.
Choice of plants for a small pond
To plant a beautiful aquatic plant. And what could be more beautiful Nymphaea, or Pitcher (Nymphaea)? And I had it, just on the occasion - waiting for its time in a bucket of water. Here, however, it should be understood that each nymph - its own container.
We usually recommend that from the surface of the water to the nymph rosette was at least 40 cm, but I have only a depth of 35 cm tank. The area of the water surface is recommended at least 1 m², and I have a diameter of 62 cm is 0.3 m². The volume of the container for the root system of nymphaea is desirable to take 5, and preferably 10-15 liters. But in my 90-liter basin to put a 10-liter container?
So it is very important to select for such a mini-pool and a suitable - of the dwarf variety - nymphs to get a good result. Ordinary will be cramped, and therefore they will not look very decorative.
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Planting nymphaea in the mini-watershed
When I chose a suitable container, a small but wide, a capacity of 2 liters, its bottom I lined with a fine mesh capron mesh. Agrovolok, geotextile, shading mesh, burlap ... In general, any material that will hold the soil in the container, not allowing it to gradually wash out through the holes, but still let the water pass through.
Filled the container halfway wet (!) Soil mixture, put seedlings nymphaea and filled around it. In general, everything is the same as when planting conventional plants. There is, however, one difference. For conventional seedlings I always try to make a loose mixture, adding peat, coconut substrate or similar materials. In the case of aquatic plants, on the contrary, the mixture should be made viscous and dense, adding clay if possible, so that it is not washed away by water.
For the same purpose, after planting nymphaea, I put flat pebbles on top, on the open areas of the soil. Then this container carefully, slowly, smoothly lowered into a container with water. That's all! Grow and please me, my nymphaea! A few days later the first leaves appeared above the water, and about a month later I waited and blooming. Well, those who have seen, will understand how it is a joy to see the first blooming flower in the morning rays. To all appearances, not only I rejoiced, the guests came into my reservoir and even left their posterity to admire the beauty.
Read also our article Plants for reservoirs.
Wintering nymphaea and pond
But summer and heat is fleeting, and winter is ahead. What to do? It is worth remembering two important things. If the reservoir is small, like mine, and there is a risk of its complete freezing, then nymphaea should be removed from the pond for the winter. If the reservoir does not freeze to the bottom, you can leave it there, considering that the temperature of water under the ice layer is +4 degrees. When the surface of the reservoir began to be covered by thin first ice, I took nymphaea out of the water. Completely cut off all the old leaves, removed all plant debris, and trimmed the roots that have grown through the holes.
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Nymphaea over the summer has grown strongly, and the container was clearly overcrowded. I put the nymphaea in a bucket, pouring water so that it completely covered it, and took it to the basement for the winter. There I have a quite suitable temperature for the hibernation of seedlings, both land and water: +5 ... +8 degrees.
I could have done a more compact variant, just put the nymph in a nylon bag and fasten it tightly. But my space allows me to keep it in a bucket. This way it will overwinter until the warm days come. Then it will need to be divided into parts and planted in larger containers. By then, hopefully, I will have a more spacious pond.
Yes, and what to do with the "basin" in winter? In principle, you can leave it in the winter with water. But we all studied at school and remember that water expands when it freezes, and containers burst in the cold. To avoid this, you can put in the water for the winter peculiar compensators, which will take the pressure of expanding water.
First time we put in the water for this thick logs and timbers. Now they take plastic bottles, fill them to 1/3 with sand and lower them into the water. The air in the bottle is compressed by the freezing water, and the container remains intact.
But I decided otherwise. Anyway the tank should be cleaned from the accumulated silt, so do it in the spring or in the fall? So I took the "basin" out of the pit, cleaned, rinsed and returned to its place. By the way, the soil around over the season very well compacted. Standing tank all winter will be empty, and to water and debris do not fall inside, I covered it with a piece of linoleum, of course, putting under it a couple of slats (so that under the weight of the snow did not fail), and the top of pressing bars (so that the wind did not carry away).
Read also our material How to establish and decorate a plastic pond in the garden.
A couple of words about the framing of the pond. It seems to me that with such small size, it would look ridiculous surrounded by trees and even medium-sized shrubs, but the decorative grasses - just the same. So I did, but this is a separate topic, one day I'll tell.
Of course, now I can clearly see the little mistakes that need to be corrected, but on the whole, for the season, my mini pond and nymphaea very pleased me. And how they amused my self-esteem:
- "Igor, have you done it yourself? God, what a beauty!"
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