ATP's Front Yard Pond!


ATP

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My pond design has a slight slope from the house to the driveway with a max decrease of ~7.5" at the corner of the pond next to the driveway. My question is do I want to berm the lower sides up so they are level with the high side or maybe split the difference and use rock on the higher corners to hide the difference?

Here is a pic of what i am describing:
pond slope.jpg
 
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You could do either And 7.5“ isn’t a lot. but building up right near your drive may look odd. Do you plan to have a waterfall or other buildup somewhere in this design?

I love the idea of a nice front yard pond!
 
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I like the idea of using the low point as the high water point. That would give you a bigger waterfall facing the driveway (is that where it will be?). And like @EricV said, 7.5” is nothing if you want to level things out.
 

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You could do either And 7.5“ isn’t a lot. but building up right near your drive may look odd. Do you plan to have a waterfall or other buildup somewhere in this design?

I love the idea of a nice front yard pond!
I like the idea of using the low point as the high water point. That would give you a bigger waterfall facing the driveway (is that where it will be?). And like @EricV said, 7.5” is nothing if you want to level things out.
That high point also appears to be an inch or two higher than the surrounding edge. Here is another picture of basically where i intend to have the water features. Not right at that high point but around it. Two small water falls from the bog and a spillway bowl on the opposite side.

I may build a small birm on the low point just to keep run off from entering pond but I would like to keep the bog a touch higher if possible.
Pond v3.jpg
 
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That would give you a bigger waterfall facing the driveway
Hands down a very small build up on the down hill edge along the driveway to insure no rock salt or street grime gets in the pond. But i'm talking very little just enough to keep run off out. Then have the cut going into the uphill side You can loose the 7" easily just by carefully choosing the rocks . or you can make it look bigger then it is again with the rocks. I would have the water level around 3 to 4 inches lower than the 7.5" That should give you about 10 inches in drop thus a simple 18 inch rise in the bog will give you just under a 2 foot dop that can be a simple drop or a water falling onto another rock half way down and can be stunning. if you wanted more it's not that hard to make a 3 foot tall bog wall disappear a couple bushes can remove the look of a volcano.
 

ATP

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Hands down a very small build up on the down hill edge along the driveway to insure no rock salt or street grime gets in the pond. But i'm talking very little just enough to keep run off out. Then have the cut going into the uphill side You can loose the 7" easily just by carefully choosing the rocks . or you can make it look bigger then it is again with the rocks. I would have the water level around 3 to 4 inches lower than the 7.5" That should give you about 10 inches in drop thus a simple 18 inch rise in the bog will give you just under a 2 foot dop that can be a simple drop or a water falling onto another rock half way down and can be stunning. if you wanted more it's not that hard to make a 3 foot tall bog wall disappear a couple bushes can remove the look of a volcano.
So, if i just slightly berm up the low side for driveway runoff and make that my water level how deep should I make the first shelf (coping/marginal)? I was going to dig down to about 10" all around the pond for this shelf and keep it level. Do I just stick with this plan knowing it will slightly slope down to the low side? If I was to level this shelf it might only be around 5" deep on the low side. the lower side is also where my intake bay will be so want to try and maintain at least 8" of depth.
 
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ATP

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It has begun! After months of questions and research the weather has finally turned and allowed me to dig! I probably should have started a build thread long ago. I guess late is better than never! I want to thank everyone on here that has offered advise and guidance! It has been immensley helpful and I dont know where I would be without this site! Rather than posting my random daily questions I will use this thread going forward.

I have been waiting for this day (almost 30 yrs) ever since my early teens when I built my first pond with limited resources. I was able to get the neighborhood kids involved to help dig and even donate allowances to buy equipment and fish:LOL: My mom tells me I used an old pool liner ( i remember it being EPDM), garden hose, sump pump and trash can for skimmer. In the picture is my neice who actually fell into the pond right after it was taken and was the only one to ever do that.

childhood pond.JPEG

For those that dont already know. The pond will be located in the front yard of my house. I contacted the zoning board for my town and was given the go a
head saying it would be considered "landscaping"

Here are the details:
  • Layout 25'x 15'
  • 3" at deepest point
  • Pond dimensions - 10' x 24'
  • Bog dimensions - 4-5' x 14
  • Intake Bay
The bog will have a few low areas wher water will spill back into the pond. I have ordered a large spillway bowl (32" diameter) for an additional water feature.

Was able to get the sod removed yesterday and weather permitting today I will dig the first shelf. Below is the pic! Soils seems to be a sandy loam and varies from very easy digging to more compacted with shale mixed in.

Pond dig 1.jpg


Here are some additional pictures since I started this process

Pond v3.jpg
Rick pile 3.jpg
 
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The only depth to the shelf is for it to be below the water level so it hides the liner.

you want to see where the water from your driveway wants to flow if it flows the driveway out to the street or if it want to direct at the pond. you don't want to create a pool of water outside the pond along the driveway.

The shelves in my opinion should be built to the size of your rock not just a random number. It makes the build so much easier.

so if you have 12" boulders and your three feet it sounds perfect yet it's not you want to be taller with the boulder then your depth and if your having some shelves that are wider then the boulders on the shelf you'll want the lower level boulder taller than the shelf .

The purple in the first shelf with the flowers is a dug out depression in the soil where it's big enough that a pot your fabric anc liner will fit in so the lilly pot will sit in the depression and hide the pot ............ it is not very attractive seeing pots sitting on the shelves this is a way to hide them yet keep them contained . make it big enough to except a bigger pot for when the plants grow.

Another note i'll add is shelves that are all the same depth and width do not make the pond look natural but looks very man made.

SO IF YOU WERE TO TAKE THE PICTURE AND HAVE one side of the shelves at 8" and the other side or just a raise thats only 4 inches you can have a boulder raise up and be higher than the others when every rock is the same size or even close and they are all at the same height above grade it can look like a string of pearls and again looks man made and not all that appealing


Pond 2[11688].jpg
 
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addy1

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This is my slope, with a lot of adjusting ie dig down upper edge build up lower edge it looks like it belongs sort of. Now if standing on download side of bog it looks like nature sort of made a rock plant wall that retains water = pond.
You can make it look great. I would not raise the low area. Use rocks etc to hide the diff like said above.

Notes_220319_095940.jpg
 
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I TOOK the flower pot note from above and dug out a section of a shelf all the way down to the lower shelf making a fish cave. More about that is in my showcase and blog
 
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ATP

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he shelves in my opinion should be built to the size of your rock not just a random number. It makes the build so much easier.
That is what I was basing the 10” off of.
e purple in the first shelf with the flowers is a dug out depression in the soil where it's big enough that a pot your fabric anc liner will fit in so the lilly pot will sit in the depression and hide the pot ............ it is not very attractive seeing pots sitting on the shelves this is a way to hide them yet keep them contained . make it big enough to except a bigger pot for when the plants grow.
This answers another question I had. So sounds like I want to do plant pockets?

I can see this working as the fish are small but will they eventually dislodge the plants?
SO IF YOU WERE TO TAKE THE PICTURE AND HAVE one side of the shelves at 8" and the other side or just a raise thats only 4 inches you can have a boulder raise up and be higher than the others when every rock is the same size or even close and they are all at the same height above grade it can look like a string of pearls and again looks man made and not all that appealing
For coping stones they go from about 8” up to 22”. I was going to use a mix of those. I am ordering 3-4 ton of cobble too so will have some more options to mix things up
 

j.w

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Looking good and glad to hear you are on the way!
Nice pile of rocks............love rocks
1647707491128.gif
 
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ATP

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Day 2! Got a late start but made some decent progress. Mainly worked on the coping shelf and determining where the water level would fall and working to make sure all coping rocks will be under the water. Slightly bermed up the low side to ensure no run off from driveway. Started to dig the intake bay. 3/4 of the pond has a sandy loam which makes for easy digging. Bottom 1/4 of pond is broken shale, not easy digging. It does seem to be layered and gets easier 20" down. Does seem like the sand may be short lived and more of the fun stuff is hiding below it.
Pond Progress Day 2.jpg

The water level on the high side of the pond is shown in the below two pics. Might have been a larger gap than I anticipated but it does definately arc up an inch or two from the surrounding edges on this high point. The pond water level is is at the arrow and below the arrow would be the depth. I decided to start with 6-7 inches of water depth on this shelf. Does that sound good? More or less? This might be the new location for the spillway bowl!
High side water level.jpg

high edge water level far away.jpg
 

j.w

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You gonna make a short shelf/step to put rocks on all the way around the pond so you can't see the liner above the water?
 

ATP

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You gonna make a short shelf/step to put rocks on all the way around the pond so you can't see the liner above the water?
No, its so the shelf is under the water all the way around with the slope I am working with.
 
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j.w

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You would like a shelf also for rocks so your liner will not show up towards the top.
Get what I mean? Otherwise if no step/shelf you will see the liner exposed.

Dig a shelf, a step down in the dirt around the edge of the pond. Set rocks on the step down in the water to hide the liner and then set more rocks or whatever on top edge.
I did mine like this below. Hides liner well.

IMG_3798.JPG


IMG_6050.JPG
 

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