Pond building album one

In this, my pond building album one, you can see pictures of how we built the pond, starting with an idea from my talented gardener sister, some notions about man made ecosystems in my head and a hole in the ground.

Inspiring, my sister's natural pond in Californiamy sister's eco pond in California
My raw material was a hole in the ground with a brick wall around itMy canvas was a hole in the ground and a circular brick wall around it, from our previous pond system
and my husband's skill at fish breeding, which is worth creating a canvas forMy husband's skill at fish breeding, producing living jewels, makes creating a good canvas worthwhile

With some plans drawn, I started to build. The first step was to increase the height of the circular brick wall.

so I built up the circular brick wall in the ground. It adds depth, water storage capacity, and stops dustso I built up the circular brick wall in the ground. It adds depth, water storage capacity, and stops dust
I measured and plotted the pond dimensions and took it to a company who makes PVC liners for damsI plotted the pond dimensions and took them to a company who makes PVC liners for dams

But the pond shell still needed a floor. With the help of some friends with a powerful skill sets, we  created a concrete floor, and were one step closer to a beautiful dream.

Our friend Marc Niehaus is a master builder and craftsman. To me it feels he can do anything he tries, and he loves to build aqua systems.

Marc Niehaus connects the bottom drainMarc Niehaus connects the bottom drain
and sets its position with cast concreteand sets its position with cast concrete

Every good fish pond must have a bottom drain. It removes the fish feces and the toxic products of anaerobic decomposition. It must go in first before pouring the concrete floor over it. Marc, with Stephan's help, built the bottom drain and it was left to set overnight.

carting stone and sand from street to pondStephan carting stone and sand from street to garden.

We had ordered and taken delivery of 1 cube each of sand and stone and some bags of cement. On the day we intended pouring the floor, we hired a concrete mixer, and with some major help from Marc, and from our other friend, his son Ethan....we cast the bottom

Ethan helped out with water dutyEthan helped out with water duty
laying wire mesh, raised on stones, on the pond bottomlaying wire mesh, on the pond bottom
wire mesh is raised on small stonesmesh raised on small stones
pouring wet concretepouring out the wet concrete
Marc moves the wet concreteMarc flattens the wet concrete pile from the mixer.
Marc checks depthMarc checks floor depth
before moving the restbefore moving the last pile
finishes sitting on boardBoard protects wet cement while finishing floor
Marc sponges away the concrete splatter from the pond buildingMarc cleans bottom drain, then screws on lid.

Then the concrete was left to dry out for over a month, and after that with more help from Marc...we inserted the liner... see pond building album two

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