Garden Pool

Adding this haven for goldfish and aquatic plants is probably within your abilities.
The Basics

Make sure your garden pond
is at least 2 to 3 feet deep.

For an appealing home for goldfish and aquatic plants, and an attractive feature of your yard, nothing beats a garden pond. It can be surprisingly easy to install and maintain if designed carefully. By excavating a hole, packing it with a layer of sand, and lining it with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sheeting, you can create a pool of any shape you choose.

Before you start: Your pond should be sited on level ground, in an area that gets at least five hours of sunlight, is accessible to a garden hose, and is located where you can enjoy the view from your house, deck, or patio. Surprisingly, bigger is better for a backyard garden pool. Anything less than 2 feet deep and 8 feet in diameter collects heat and clogs with algae. In cold climates, dig an area at least 3 feet deep in which your creatures can live through the winter.

Check before you dig. A quick call to your town's building department can help you locate water, gas, and electric utility lines. Lay out your pond by arranging a garden hose to mark the shape you want. Dust the hose with sand or flour to make a guideline for digging.

What You Need:

  • PVC liner
  • Sand
  • Fine gravel
  • Brick edging
  • Flagstone coping
  • Round stones for pool bottom

Continued on page 2:  Step-by-Step