Darksaber Pond - My Next Adventure


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Thanks! The progress has been great to watch, especially last week as I had a few vacation days while they were working and I just sat out there and watched all day. I'm going to move some of the vacation days I had planned for this week to next week so that I can do the same again. I think that'll be great especially as the finer details start to come together.

This week there won't be any progress as the team mastermind is on vacation so other than me cleaning some of the rocks (I wanted to play a bit) nothing has been done since last Wednesday and won't start up again till next Monday. I think there is still a video on the camera that I need to pull down and upload, I'll try to get that later today.

Updated schedule (but I'm not forcing anything):
Week Ended the 8th
- Finish the pond
- Electrical
- Landscape Architect update the plans based on the final pond
Week Ended the 15th
- Irrigation
End of Month
- Landscaping
February
- I may start QTing some fish inside
April
- Plant the wetland, stream, intake bay
- Start stocking fish
 
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Would love to see some photos around the pond. AND the bog people here myself included love to see how certain conditions are worked such as the top of the stacked slate walls i did catch what looked like aquablocks pannel being placed ontop of tge stacked slate and under the capping stone. Now sure as to why .
 
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One of the major questions we always get is how to finish the edges how to hide the liner both from that ridge stone to that stone also hiding the liner at the surface into the pond
 
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Would love to see some photos around the pond. AND the bog people here myself included love to see how certain conditions are worked such as the top of the stacked slate walls i did catch what looked like aquablocks pannel being placed ontop of tge stacked slate and under the capping stone. Now sure as to why .
I'll get some pictures when it's light out, (if I forget remind me of exactly what you'd like to see). It wasn't aquablock panels but some heavier duty support, I don't know the exact name, I'll grab a pic of those too. I think it's meant to better spread the weight of the rock across the sides of the walls which is where the most support is.

I'm interested to see how they hide the liner on the front side too, on the backside the liner goes up so much higher than the pond itself that my guess is they'll just pull it up high and bury it, the front side where the water level is near the top of those rocks is going to be more challenging. That said once we do the landscaping later next month that area will probably all end up pea stone with some steppers going over to the stairs so they may just bring it right up to ground level then we put the ground cover over the liner then the peastone on top so the gravel in the pond blurs into the peastone on the ground, we will see...
 
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I totally agree with you to move your vacation days so you can sit in your chair and watch the progress!!! I panicked when my pond guys asked if they could start on a Friday, when I was going to be gone Thurs-Sun that weekend to go back to IL to get my koi and goldfish, rocks and plants. I didn’t want to miss any of the building, even seeing the huge forklifts they used to bring the rock into the yard was exciting to me! (I added up over 20 tons of rock for the pond, plus patio blocks/stones for the patio, so the yard gained 25-30 tons of weight this summer!) They agreed to wait until the following week, and filled in with a small job in the meantime. Of course, I retired this year, so I had the luxury of being here to watch. I found it extremely hard to do anything else while they were here. Our yard was all dirt by time the pond and then stone patio were completed, but it was oh so worth it!!! Sowed grass Labor Day weekend and a month of watering later it was solid green again.
 
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@CountryEscape it would be nice to see more of your pond this spring /summer they did a great job and would love t o see it mature.
I can’t wait to see how the pond looks when it “wakes up” in spring in Ohio!!! Attached is a picture right now. It’s the first time I’ve netted a pond. Built the cover myself with conduit and PVC and two nets that I zip tied together. (I used a zillion zip ties because didn’t think of fishing line until later, and thread of any type would disintegrate in short order.)
479762EA-00D3-4018-813F-0DD8B705BA3C.jpeg
 
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Question, so the rocks and gravel were varying degrees of dirty and the weather has been terrible which has resulted in clay and mud getting into the pond. I spent near two days trying to get rid of the worst of it only to dig down to the protective liner in a few areas that had water running through it clean and see a ton of mud. We are going to get more rain over the weekend so next week will introduce more mud.

Is there a way to clean this after filling, using micron filter socks before it goes into the wetland? Or let it all settle it in the weekend then put the wetland? Some of its so deep in the gravel bed that you can only see it when you dig down into it, sterling in it, hose directly at the top of the gravel did nothing to dislodge it. Will that be an issue? Any thoughts are greatly appreciated!
 
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Milonedp, maybe post some close up photos of your issue if you can, so we can see more what you are talking about. I’m thinking if you are going to have a wetland area with not much (or any?) water movement, you’re going to get dirt and silt from the air anyhow, so it’s a losing battle. If, however, you’re wanting to clean the rocks first, it’s a matter of removing all of them to clean it out. Need to know what your end goal is.
 
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If you are having run off getting into your pond i would be calling the company that built it. Even the patio runoff should be diverted away though so long as its Only rain water from the patio is ok but anything from the lawn or else where should have a area mounded up to keep it from the pond. Now it the clay was not running untill you disturbed it I could see that being ok but as a whole no run off from surrounding areas should get in the pond thats pond building 101
You are still under construction and the last items to address is tucking in the liner which is the build up i was talking about. I got you and countryescape mixed up there . That build up is all part of the landscaping and finishing.
 
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I would wash down the rocks when ever possible and after it rains pump it out. You only get one chance before its filled and full of fish or not. If you see an area thats bleeding into the pond dam it up. Stop it anyway you can spreading straw over the exposed mud / dirt can help greatly but make sure you stay away from the pond its self straw or hay can get annoying in the build and could possibly puncture the rubber.
 
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I would wash down the rocks when ever possible and after it rains pump it out. You only get one chance before its filled and full of fish or not. If you see an area thats bleeding into the pond dam it up. Stop it anyway you can spreading straw over the exposed mud / dirt can help greatly but make sure you stay away from the pond its self straw or hay can get annoying in the build and could possibly puncture the rubber.
Yep you had us confused. Although my pond appears to be close to flush, it isn’t. And there is a pipe under the liner just in case too much water gets under the liner. I can easily pump it back out with a shop vac. When I mentioned having somewhat elevated pond edges in IL, I meant that stopped the leaves from blowing in, most were diverted around the ponds.
 
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I'm not having run-off. My question was about clay / mud from the build process, the rock as it is being moved around, the quarry, boots, etc... I washed and pumped out a lot but everywhere I turn off I dig down s few inches then gravel is dirty.

I'll try to get some pictures tomorrow if it's not raining again

I wanted to get as much out now as I could but don't want to be going overboard so I wanted 1. thoughts on what is normal and 2. methods for cleaning as well as water polishing for just after start up as I'm sure more fine particles will be disturbed and need to be filtered then too.

End goal is a stable system without having to treat it with the "perfection" I'm used to from the reef aquariums side of the hobby. It'd be impossible on this scale so I guess I'm really trying to learn the right balance for a pond. I know most will settle out (the water was clear before I even started mucking around and cleaning) and the water will clear once filter are running but I wasn't sure if the clay would leach nitrates, phosphate or other organics than I need to worry about.
 

Jhn

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I'm not having run-off. My question was about clay / mud from the build process, the rock as it is being moved around, the quarry, boots, etc... I washed and pumped out a lot but everywhere I turn off I dig down s few inches then gravel is dirty.

I'll try to get some pictures tomorrow if it's not raining again

I wanted to get as much out now as I could but don't want to be going overboard so I wanted 1. thoughts on what is normal and 2. methods for cleaning as well as water polishing for just after start up as I'm sure more fine particles will be disturbed and need to be filtered then too.

End goal is a stable system without having to treat it with the "perfection" I'm used to from the reef aquariums side of the hobby. It'd be impossible on this scale so I guess I'm really trying to learn the right balance for a pond. I know most will settle out (the water was clear before I even started mucking around and cleaning) and the water will clear once filter are running but I wasn't sure if the clay would leach nitrates, phosphate or other organics than I need to worry about.
Really the only issue the silt in the rock will cause is aesthetically. If it does have phosphates/nitrates in it that is the beauty of your wetland filter, once it gets going it will take care of it. I have a reef aquarium myself, while some things are similar others aren’t like worrying about perfection in your water quality. Pond fish like koi/goldfish/orfes aren’t as sensitive to water quality as denizens of reef tanks and plants will bank a lot of harmful elements in their mass, keeping your water quality up.
In the gravel that is how the fines work it will settle to the bottom of the gravel pile. I would do the best you can and not worry about it. That is why most haulers worth their salt will get on loader operators in quarries about not scooping directly at the bottom of the rock piles, no one wants to pay for fines/dirt in their rock or gravel, although some is unavoidabl.

I will say as well, with my wetland filter running I can kick up silt etc. in the pond by walking around weeding back plants,etc. dirtying the water, within hours it is clear again.
 
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addy1

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I will say as well, with my wetland filter running I can kick up silt etc. in the pond by walking around weeding back plants,etc. dirtying the water, within hours it is clear again.
When I work the plants in the bog it will totally cloud the pond to the point you can't see inches under the water. Like @Jhn says a few hours later back to clear.
 
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Also remember your pond is outdoors - you will naturally get silt and dust that will fall into the pond when it rains or the wind blows, not to mention dirt from your plants, organic material breaking down, etc. Dirt in a pond is pretty much a foregone conclusion. It won't affect water clarity because it will settle. When you start planting in your pond, your plants may even gather some dirt around their roots - it's pretty interesting to see how that happens. You can plant a barefoot plant one year and by the time you go to thin it out the next year, it looks like you planted it in dirt. In any case, your pond will never be "clean" so don't worry too much about it.

Here's what SHOULD happen since this pond is a pro build - at least this is what I have seen every single pro do as they reach the finish line. They will complete the interior pond rock work and then will start to fill the pond, rinsing rocks off as they do. Then they will pump that dirty water out (with a pump that can handle solids) and continue filling and rinsing until the water reaches an acceptable level of "clean". Your pond will still be cloudy for a few days, but again - that all settles. If they don't do this or you watch and feel they are stopping too soon, I'd talk to them about it. But I'm assuming they've done lots of ponds - they know how far they need to take "clean".

And yes - forget everything you know about reef tanks and aquariums. Ponds and tanks have two things in common - fish and water. It ends there!
 
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Exactly what Lisak1 said above. They washed off my large boulders and then pumped out that dirty water before filling the pond. Everything else settled. They recommended I use beneficial bacteria product they gave me to add daily for 10 days. Then I bought additional BB stuff I added for another 7 days. Have had crystal clear water ever since, including right now. I’m in Cincinnati OH and the pond was filled first week of July this year, also built by professionals. It’s heaven, especially since I had 2 nice sized ponds in IL before moving this past spring. Our new pond is much larger (about double size of previous koi pond), and just love everything about it, including the rocks on the bottom, which I never had before and argued didn’t want them this time. So far, I have a feeling those rocks are part if not most of the reason for the clarity.
Good luck to you! You’re going to love the finished product. We are going to love it, too.
 
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The peach fuzz that grows on everything in the pond is life for everything in the pond . it will help convert co2 to o2., It gives the fish food. it gives countless other creatures a home and food. While it to adds to the over all surface area where bacteria and photo plankton can live and feed.
 

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