New waterfall and stream build


Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
Makes sense! I'll probably go the pallet route me thinks. I'd prefer to use aquablocks or similar as I have a very limited spot to put a reservoir between underwater pipes and the lawn. Using the blocks would allow me to make a more irregular shape if needed whereas with the pallets its a big square or nothing... Will mull it over the weekend and then get something sorted :)
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
So the milk crates here do stack well (alternately) and are strong, I may go that route now lol. Last thing to get...

Given that they don't have flat bottoms, I may cut off the "legs" of the bottom ones, so they sit flat and distribute the weight. Would also need to do the same for the top ones so they don't stick out.

1668643667322.png
 
Last edited:
Joined
Aug 20, 2020
Messages
182
Reaction score
123
Location
Southwest
Country
United States
Could you put the milk crates on their side? I would worry cutting the "legs" off is a lot of work and could leave sharper edges than you have now.
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
10,043
Reaction score
7,944
Location
Ct
Showcase(s):
1
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
I agress I'd chop the legs unless you were to pad both under them and under the liner realy realy well.
But after cutting them I'd the use a belt sander and make damn sure there's no rough spots
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
Reservoir taking shape, just need to "gather" a few more milk crates. The green bread crates make great bases/tops too, fit on really well and are also surprisingly strong. If I stack the crates in a non alternating way I get more void space and use fewer crates. I will still cut the "legs" off but the bread crate will disperse the weight. Don;t need the reservoir to be quite as high as this and I'll be digging by hand so not keen to dig more clay than I need to! Heaps of void space too!


IMG20221124234153.jpg
IMG20221124234425.jpg
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
Could you put the milk crates on their side? I would worry cutting the "legs" off is a lot of work and could leave sharper edges than you have now.
I'll check this but they might not be so stable as no interlocking on their side. Could zip tie I guess. I have a reciprocating saw which should make fairly easy work of the legs, will do a trial today see how it all comes out
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Sep 18, 2020
Messages
2,219
Reaction score
2,058
Location
Pacific NW
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
Creative use of materials. I like it. I think if you cut the legs off the bottom milk crates and place it on a bread crate with a good, heavy underlayment under all of that, you'll be in good shape.

Did you mention what kind of loads you expect to see on this? My only concern would be a large boulder with a point that rests in the middle of the webbing or a large live load from a big person jumping and landing in the center of a crate. The webbing on the crate bottoms even on our small cube ones in the USA are not tremendously strong right at the center without additional support.
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
Creative use of materials. I like it. I think if you cut the legs off the bottom milk crates and place it on a bread crate with a good, heavy underlayment under all of that, you'll be in good shape.

Did you mention what kind of loads you expect to see on this? My only concern would be a large boulder with a point that rests in the middle of the webbing or a large live load from a big person jumping and landing in the center of a crate. The webbing on the crate bottoms even on our small cube ones in the USA are not tremendously strong right at the center without additional support.

Thanks! Yeah I am planning on putting 2 layers of geo underneath, then liner then another layer of geo. I also have those interlocking EVA foam mats I could add, maybe on top of all that directly underneath the cage?

In terms of rocks I am using lava rocks (scoria) for larger rocks plus pebbles in the stream bed. The scoria is certainly lighter than most rock and I'm not planning on using anything really big on top of this. I can also put the EVA foam underneath the larger ones which will address any points but I'll try and position them to minimise this anyway. I'm the only big person round here and wont be jumping on it :) I guess I could also put wood blocks in the centres of the creates as a cheap easy way to minimise this, top level anyway?
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2022
Messages
70
Reaction score
36
Location
franklin Va
Hardiness Zone
7b
Country
United States
I would not use wood blocks. If you're having concerns about the center sagging. I would use a large size PVC pipe with thick walls a couple small holes and a few zip ties and you can hold them right in place.
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
10,043
Reaction score
7,944
Location
Ct
Showcase(s):
1
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Thanks! Yeah I am planning on putting 2 layers of geo underneath, then liner then another layer of geo. I also have those interlocking EVA foam mats I could add, maybe on top of all that directly underneath the cage?

In terms of rocks I am using lava rocks (scoria) for larger rocks plus pebbles in the stream bed. The scoria is certainly lighter than most rock and I'm not planning on using anything really big on top of this. I can also put the EVA foam underneath the larger ones which will address any points but I'll try and position them to minimise this anyway. I'm the only big person round here and wont be jumping on it :) I guess I could also put wood blocks in the centres of the creates as a cheap easy way to minimise this, top level anyway?
Don't know if I'd use the foam mats not all foam and all plastics are fish safe.
GEO TECH FABRIC IS NOT ALL THE SAME EITHER as most of the fabric you can find locally is usually 4 or 5 oz. it's tear strength is generally very low. though i did get an 8 oz non woven fabric from lowes special order
i understand dyi but id not chinch on the insurance which in this case is the fabric. though if your nothing but silt, clay or sand its only the milk crates them selves you need to be careful with.

one other thing i'd do is to tie the sides together with a zip tie . This is to help make sure the sides don't start to collapse. Aqua blocks have center supports making them much stronger . your missing basically three supports per equal size to an aquablock . but they can be used under a parking lot . somehow i doubt you need that kinda strength.

how big is the falls going to be that can be a tricky area to control the water and its splashing any splashing getting outside can add up a lot quicker then most think.
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
I have a permeable woven geo fabric which is listed as suitable for:
  • Separation of aggregates in parking, pavements, and roads
  • Low cost temporary or permanent roading for construction vehicles in problem traffic areas
  • Under aggregate to prevent loss of fill into subsoil and allow top cover to remain firm
  • Filter lining for erosion control and stop banks
I will be using a double layer under the liner in the reservoir and another layer on top.. It will be a fishless system so no worries on that front. I think I will use the EVA foam mats for added protection at the bottom of the reservoir. I'll also use them under larger rocks on top.

Been thinking about the reinforcing of the crates. I am planning on the stream emptying into only the far bottom corner of the reservoir, so I only need drainage access there. Therefore I think I could cover most of it with something rigid that's safe to walk on and can better hold rocks and plants. This would extend over the edges of the hole so wouldn't just be weighing down on the crates. Not sure what it would be exactly yet but have considered marine ply or those rigid plastic mats they use to protect turf at festivals so far. Has anyone seen or heard of others doing this?
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Oct 28, 2013
Messages
12,260
Reaction score
12,480
Location
Northern IL
Showcase(s):
1
Has anyone seen or heard of others doing this?
I don't recommend relying on a small drainage area. You'll end up with leaves and debris that clog the area and now your water has no place to go. Or you get a hard rain and the whole thing floods because it can't drain fast enough.

We used landscape fabric on the top of our blocks (this was the recommendation at the time to keep gravel and debris from falling into the blocks) - big mistake. It clogged in a matter of days. You want as much free flowing space as you can manage on top of your reservoir.
 
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
10,043
Reaction score
7,944
Location
Ct
Showcase(s):
1
Hardiness Zone
6b
Country
United States
Woven is some tuff stuff, but it is designed to spread weight more than it is for penetration's which is usually the goal in building most ponds. We use woven almost everyday building roads and construction sites.

if you have clay soils with no rocks sticks or junk then it will probably be more than enough to do the job
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2022
Messages
23
Reaction score
14
Country
New Zealand
Thanks all. I'll refrain from using too much impermeable covering on top. As mentioned I will use pads of EVA foam mat under the pressure points of larger rocks on the reservoir and elsewhere.

I would like to have at least some plants on top, what is the best way to do that? Could use planter bags made of geo fabric in between rocks? Only kids would walk on top so no one heavy.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Oct 28, 2013
Messages
12,260
Reaction score
12,480
Location
Northern IL
Showcase(s):
1
Depends what you're planting - some do great right in the rocks; others you will regret for the rest of your life... haha!

I have hosta planted directly into the rocks in our rain exchange - two throw away scraps that I thought "what the heck - let's see what happens". They grew like crazy and look great every year, even in the full sun of August.
 
Ad

Advertisements


Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top