Hi from Carlsbad CA


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Good Morning -

I have been lurking on this site for years - following builds, reading up on koi health, seeing the debates on pump volumes and ever interesting filtration ideas. Figured I would join to learn more, contribute where I can and be a part of the pond community.

I know everyone likes a picture, attached is one of my pond. It is 1,450 gallons has an Evolution ESS external pump, Ultima II 2000 filter, 25w Aqua Ultraviolet light, bio falls and of course a skimmer. There is an internal second pump in the skimmer to add volume to the falls when entertaining in the back yard. It is at the back of my yard where I have an additional patio area along with a fire pit to stay warm, hang out with a cold beer and enjoy the fish.

I built it about 12 years ago and it has been running great ever since then. My wife and I are thinking to rebuild it - for a couple of reasons. 1) as built it is just over 4' deep. At the time we thought the hole was huge and that it was more then deep enough. Over the years we have lost a few great specimens of koi to various wildlife. Using nets is a pain as they catch debris and prevents us from enjoying the clear water. 2) there is a leak around the skimmer and having re-sealed the opening several times, I think it is time for a new skimmer since the screw holes are breaking down. 3) the angle of the falls in relation to our back patio / doors is off by about 30 degrees. Meaning we do not hear them all that well in our house unless we turn on the secondary pump.

If I were to rebuild the pond, I would angle the fall to our back patio area to enjoy the subtle sound, replace the liner & skimmer and deepen it by 2 feet. We are headed in that direction and along the way, I will create a pond build thread to track the efforts, hopefully learning from the masters of the site! We have learned a lot and made a few changes - all of which would bet applied to the rebuild.

Thanks
Lake

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Great Setup !! i love when the pond comes right to the patios edge. The one thing i'd consider is removing the small paripit wall between your patio and the pond. Let the [lants grow onto the patio tying it all in together . looks like you could remove the one course and drop the cap to where the bottom of that one course of block was i bet it would make it look a lot more natural . or just open the block in the center creating a frame framing out the view tot he pond with the two planters heres a little collection of dream ponds for some ideas https://www.gardenpondforum.com/threads/some-very-impressive-pond-builds.26353/
 

addy1

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Welcome to our forum! Very nice pond and set up.

Post a construction thread we all love to help out!
 

IPA

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Welcome, beautiful pond. I am told that 2’ deep covers herons and 3-4’ would be more than deep enough for an Egret, but that is in the part of the world that I live. Do you have straight sides or are they gradual?
I only mention it because there is some great discussion here on, depending on size and volume, ponds being too deep to maintain water health as surface area to volume is an important variable.
 
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Very nice looking pond, like it right next to the patio.
 
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My pond is relatively new and i have a stalked trout pond across the street which doesn't take long for the fisherman and the ospree egrets and heron to clean it out. Unfortunately it only has one area over 4 foot deep. Any who the point i am trying to get to is instead of putting the pond in a net i put the entire area in a net and strung wire removing the flight path of the heron and egret and ospree. oh and the eagle but he doesn't stand a chance way to tight an area. So far so good and i have seen many say tehy had no problems for years and thennnnnn. Any ways i also bought some golf netting and at 30 feet away and 16 feet high from the ground creating a wall. you can't even tell it's there. so far so good.
 
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Thanks for the warm welcome.

@GBBUDD Yes, I agree the pond could interact with the patio more. As I rebuild, the thought is rather then digging down to go deeper, build the walls higher. This will keep some substance to the wall avoiding it from looking anemic!

@IPA The sides are straight. I do however have a small area that was originally intended to be a ledge for plants. Quickly realizing it was either fish or plants I have since placed a large rock there making it less inviting for birds. And yes, both egrets and heron are frequently flying over.

Too deep is an area I will look for information from this group on how best to ensure proper circulation. My pond is really clear now with the system I have. I would not want to head down a path of merky water and will wand to avoid pitfalls. Going from ~4' to ~6' shouldn't lend to a impact, but I will gladly hear from the group.

Here is an image showing the angle of the falls in relation to the larger patio area in my backyard. Moving the falls over 3-4 feet will make a world of difference in the sound.

Lake

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I commend you on your masonry skills...Very nice pond. I do agree with GBBUDD on removing the knee wall...It would really make a big difference adding a more natural feel once plants were added.
 
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That's a fantastic relaxation area. Be careful on your rebuild if you increase the flow or raise the falls the sound could really bounce in that area it could make it hard to hear conversations. Then again with the plants do they absorb the acoustics?
 
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GBBUDD has a good point...I have two waterfalls and I cannot hear a thing if we are sitting trying to have a conversation at the pond. I always have to say "What? I can't hear you, the falls" LOL Definitely give it a lot of thought....I actually had them lowered because they were REALLY loud before and I felt as though I was living in a water park...
 
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Help me spend money correctly!

Well, I pulled the construction trigger! Removed the falls, pond and liner. I then pulled a couple of trees and extended the retaining wall to frame the pond a little differently.

In the new version I'd like to overcome a couple of areas for improvement. There are prevailing winds all the time that push towards the back right side (where the shrub is at in the picture). I think two smaller skimmers in the front left & right corners will help pull the surface clean. Second is that the bottom could have been cleaner with a TPR return, thinking a couple of those.

Next is Savio vs Atlantic vs AquaScape. I am receiving a few bids and they are all over the place in price and offerings. Seems like some of the contractors are almost salesman for only one brand versus giving me a good, better, best approach! Figured I'd ask the group. I was thinking of two Savio compact skimmers with the 8.5" face plate in each corner, CSW085. Then for the fall use a 16" Savio fall with filter, F070.

Rock Sides / Bottom vs Smooth Sides / Bottom. Two schools of thought here - which is right for a small Koi pond? Previously it was a smooth side / bottom, which stayed clean and the water was clear. Some builders are suggesting all of the sides inside of the water should have rocks where others are saying the sides and bottom don't have to have rocks! Both schools of thought agree the top edge should have rock, at least there is some alignment!

Estimated new pond size:
Width: ~11 feet
Length: ~9 feet
Depth: 4 feet
Fall Height: ~4-5 feet

My wife and I are excited and looking forward to having our pond back in service.

Thanks
Lake



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Fall 4-5 ' Is your plan to have a water fall drop over the retaining wall?
 
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You have a lot to work with but a steep slope and a steep drop means extra work and precautions in water splash or you will loose a lot of water. I would almost lean toward taking out the end of the retaining wall and replacing with some boulders have the water come down in that depression between the retaining wall and the fence but placing some THIN boulder looking rocks there. Have the water dump into the pond on the left side to where one of your return jets is pushing to the right of the photo and a second is pushing to the right but also toward the back where you can then place your skimmer. I would also look at the helix skimmer THEY HAVE A triple deep basket for leaf collecting. and the use a matala pad for a filter
 
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