Introduction to Water Gardening and Garden Ponds
If there is one thing that gives more satisfaction than a garden full of flowers, shrubs and trees, it is a garden that has all these plus some water, whether it is a pond, a lake or a stream. A simple pond should provide clear water with bright reflections, the movement of fishes and a chance to grow the exotic-looking, some of which are heavily scented. Using simple methods of pond construction, you can make a delightful place of interest in your garden, a centre point of conversation that fascinates visitors and draws all eyes. Apart from the pond itself, there is the animal life that it attracts, from insects to amphibians.
The sound of water in summer is very soothing: on a hot, lazy day when everything is still apart from the hum of insects, the splash of water from a fountain or waterfall recreates the atmosphere of more tropical scenes. The glitter of water gives movement to an otherwise static garden, and attracts birds to drink and bathe.
With a pond we can learn more about nature and the section of life that lives in water or is closely allied to it, with its balance of one animal feeding on another and yet supplying food to a different species to form a cycle of life and death, with each member an important link in the chain. We can study fishes, insects, amphibians and other forms of animal life that are attracted to the pond; how they grow, change and mature; what they eat and how they benefit the other pond occupants; and why some live close to the surface and are easily seen, while others lurk in the depths.
Plants are also very interesting in their growth patterns from seed or dormant root; some thrive and dominate their area, whereas others are slower and seem to struggle for life. A plant may produce a vast quantity of foliage and few flowers, yet another will have a tremendous show of colourful blooms with the minimum of leaf growth. It is interesting to watch flowers progress from buds to full blooms, being pollinated and producing ripe seeds to reproduce their species. Other plants increase their numbers by running roots under ground or under water, and producing sprouts of foliage some distance from the parent plant.