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What do I need to consider before installing a pond?

I'd like a pond, but I want to make sure it fits into my landscape. What do I need to consider before installing one?
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

Ponds are wonderful in a landscape, and you're in luck, because just about any size garden can accommodate one. Ponder these questions as you look around your garden for a place to add a water element. How will you use your pond? Depending on how natural a setting you want, decide how many plants to place around your pond. Just about any pond will invite wildlife, but one with abundant plants draws more birds and butterflies. If your pond is more for reflection and quiet, place a chair near an area of open water where you can drink in the serenity.  Is your landscape a place to entertain? If so, placing water near your porch or patio creates a crowd magnet. People will naturally congregate near the pond's edge, so provide a bench or a couple of chairs to allow guests to linger.

Is your home near a busy city street? A pond with a fountain or waterfall is just right for such a spot. A recirculating water system will make pleasant splashing sounds if you give the water places to trickle and fall. If you don't have room for a waterfall, any sort of fountain that lets water return to the pond will create sound to mask the street noise. Are you short on space? Design a pond scaled to fit the room you have available. Consider all of your options: You may decide on a water garden in a large container or pot rather than an in-ground installation.

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My husband and I built a beautiful pond, complete with fish, water lilies and pump, only to have a snake eat some of the fish and racoons eat most of the others. The racoons tore up the lilies, too. Undaunted, we restocked only to have this happen again, Then the city (Los Angeles), added something to the water that made it necessary to treat it before adding to a pond. So anyone considering building a pond needs to know what predators/water are in their area. We gave up. The pond is now gone.
Submitted by vsimonton101