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Streams…

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Hi everyone. I've decided to make some adjustments to the stream we added last year. I never was super happy with it and could not get the last spill stone/rocks the way I wanted.

I've been looking around the web for some info and ideas. Not coming up with a whole lot for something small like I have, but still very natural.

Does anyone know, if I have just a 14" spillway, how wide can I go on the stream? I have a 1900 gph pump and probably a 500 gallon pond. I don't have such a huge lift either, as you can see in the photo. I'm fine with how the water comes out of the box, but need to adjust how it spills into the pond, so thought i might as well make some changes "along the way."

Who has some pictures to share?

Thumbnail by Mrs_Ed
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Hi Mrs. Ed. I happened to find your post. Hah, so you're not happy with your stream? The one that I wanted so much? LOL Looking at your pond, I can see our taste is so similiar. From the boulders to the driftwoods to the crane 'wading' by the pond. I just LOVE it!

Our stream is much steeper than yours, for that reason I think birds don't bathe there as they do yours. Which is a draw-back that I like to learn to modify our stream. So I hope we can exchange information here and learn from one another. Hope others will chime in too.

I've an errand to run. But, I'll try to get DH to come in and shares some pointer this week as he's on homecation beginning tomorrow. So hang in there. Will post some pix to share later.
Kim

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

hahah. HOMEcation. Love it.

Kim! Of course i'm not surprised we have the same taste…since we have the same arbor too. Not to mention how much I want to live at your house, LOL. The stream is still serving its purpose wonderfully (birds visiting and pond filtration), but some adjustments need made. I bought three new spill stones yesterday. I'm both anxious to start and dreading it. LOL. Starting the project on Friday/Saturday. Hope to empty the pond on Thursday.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Marna, as so far your design, and location chosen for the stream and pond is ideal! In contrast ours is in too much shade. When we 1st built the pond. Sun/shade wasn't a factor. I've since learned that shade works against us since I couldn't grow many sun loving plants as I wished. Here is a pix to share. The stream, which was built around the natural curvature of the land....it drops down to a 7 stair steps into the 2000 gallons (approximate) pond below.

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Hah, an experienced gardener can look at the plants I have, he/she can tell that where fern grows....that's much too shady. ... To our left where the big flat rock/stone that's where we hide the 3000 gals/hr. capacity pump. That's too powerful a flow in which I afraid birds just don't care to get swept under the current. :(( That was one of many drawbacks that I've learned. And learn as I go ....

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

The steep drop of the stream ...

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

...

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

There are total four 'water falls' within the stream meadering down the stream into the pond below.

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

I gotta run, bbl...

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Lovely. The good thing about that shade is it will help control algae. I bet you could also redirect a small amount of water for the birds.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Hi Mrs. Ed. "Redirect a small amount of water..." how do you mean? Please explain.

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

The pond with the bridge across the walkway from the back of the garden to the back deck. The design is functional, but more and more I'm wishing we've more sun back here....

In regard to algea problem. Mrs. Ed. Doesn't UV light system help in full sun condition?

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

I suppose if one wants to do the UV thing, one can. We've chosen not to. We actually aren't having too bad of a time. We add peroxide once a week, and the natural filtration does the rest.

And about redirecting a small amount of water, I think you can pick a suitable spot and "split" the stream. You'd want to only divert a small amount of water though and then have it dump back into the main stream. Might be difficult given the height of your rock sides.

New Hampshire, NH(Zone 5b)

First, you have a very nice pond and stream. I can relate to your desire to keep working on it until it's exactly how you want it. I think I change mine a little every year!

As for your question, are you just hoping to make the stream wider or do you have another objective? I think it really depends on what you like. Do you want water to fill the entire width of the stream or would you be fine with some dry spots? When I built my stream, I knew I wanted to see the water, not just wet rocks. My stream is about 3 feet wide in most places, but I placed larger rocks right in the streambed, along the edges. I think this gives it the appearance of having a respectable width, while it also narrows the channel for the water to flow through, creating more water depth.

Another thought might be to consider trying to make it less straight. It's harder to do with a shorter stream, but you could still give it a couple little twists and turns as it cascades down. Again, just thoughts.

Here's my stream from 2 years ago. It's changed a little since, but I didn't take any new pictures last year.

Thumbnail by SongsofJoy
New Hampshire, NH(Zone 5b)

Closer shot

Thumbnail by SongsofJoy
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

SoJ, now that's a dream! It look so inviting. I just love the bigger boulders rocks. Have you a variety of wildlife come to visit your stream? Mrs. Ed. it's more challenging for us since the contour of the stream is quite steep.

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Yes, that is gorgeous and natural, and exactly the kind I would want.

When I designed this originally, It was to take a turn. I can't remember the exact reasons why I wound up making it straight, but I suspect that DH had something to do with it. LOL. I am hoping to make somewhat of a twist, but really, I'm not sure what I can do now that it's installed. I don't want to tear out the top waterfall box and rock work.

Back to your question about my ultimate goal. It is really to get the final drop into the pond fixed. So I guess anything after that is great. I DO love the idea of rocks in the middle to break up the stream. If I have room, I'll attempt that. I also love having the flat rocks there because the birds love to bathe there.

New Hampshire, NH(Zone 5b)

quote="Mrs_Ed"]
When I designed this originally, It was to take a turn. I can't remember the exact reasons why I wound up making it straight, but I suspect that DH had something to do with it. LOL. [/quote]

Too funny - I can definitely relate!!

As for wildlife, I have lots of birds and frogs that visit. That's about it, but I don't think I'd want anything more wild than that, LOL!

Thumbnail by SongsofJoy
Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Good gravy, that's beautiful. Looks like it's just a scene in the middle of the woods.

Oh yah, I think DH wanted just to make a water fall, no stream. this may have been a compromise. He kept instructing me to carve out the stream into the soil or something. I think I just blocked it all from my memory. ha!!!

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

I can relate to what the men prefer to do. They just don't understand we'd like to modify the stream for our beloved birds. lol SoJ, birds and tadpoles are about all I wanted in my water garden too. Every so often I'll have Hawks and Great Blue Herons to come and check out the fish. But that's rare.

Mrs. Ed. Here is a couple pics. I took at the nursery today to get us inspired;

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

This is in my wishing star. To be able to grow waterlily in the pond where it requires lot of sunshine.

Thumbnail by Lily_love
Phoenix, AZ

Here's a couple Variations on my stream. I had it with a "beach" for a while, the birds loved it! There would be 4 -5 at a time taking baths and flinging water :) Unfortunately my pup liked it too and kept messing up the liner underneath and the water would start to wick underneath and I was losing a lot of water,

Thumbnail by Fish_knees
Phoenix, AZ

So I had to raise the side, which made the water a little deeper and the birds didn't have as much fun :(

Thumbnail by Fish_knees
Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Oh man, that's gorgeous.

I've been working on it this weekend, but storms are here now. boo.

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

It's done… mostly.

Thumbnail by Mrs_Ed
Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Marna, you've added/modified some planting. Were you able to reduce the leakage and modify the water flow?

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Kim it still has a slow leak, but I can't find it. It does not seem to be… well, ANYWHERE. It is more rapid of a loss than the usual evaporation. I widened the stream and put a slight curve to it. I just couldn't physically put much more energy into it (doing it myself) to make a larger turn. And finally was able to put in the last spillstone, which in my opinion makes a huge difference.

Phoenix, AZ

It looks great!

New Hampshire, NH(Zone 5b)

Great job! I like the modification you made to the last spillway.

This message was edited Jun 7, 2011 5:14 AM

Whiteside County, IL(Zone 5a)

Thanks! I'm pretty happy with it. finally!

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