Ideas for planting new preformed koi pond

Melfa, VA(Zone 8a)

We just put in a 150 gal pond and I really need ideas for landscaping and aqua-scaping in and around it. We have moved from a shady to a sunny residence and the only plants I brought with me were the palm sedge?, waterlilies, and irises. I will be trading for the other plants I need this spring. If anyone has pictures or ideas, please post. I will appreciate it soooo much!

I hope this forum isn't just for Japanese gardens, if so, please let me know that too.

Here is a pic of the pond after we have finished this past week. We haven't added topsoil yet. That side of the house faces south but the pond will get morning shade on one side from the porch and house and on west side some evening shade from the garage which is a short distance from it on the other. It will get full sun from ~11:00am until 4:00 pm

Oh! The existing plants can be moved, there is a banana tree near the faucet to the right of the landscape timber. We took out a couple of the existing timbers.

This message was edited Dec 19, 2011 9:34 AM

Thumbnail by estrail1rider
(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

You planning on having fish? If so, what kind? I would think water lilies would love this site. And no, we are about ponds of any sort. Welcome.


What kind of bushes are there growing next to the house? What kind of look are you looking for? Mary is right, Waterlilies would love that site - they need at least 6 hours of full sun and consistent temps of 60 degrees and above to flower.

Were you thinking about fish?

Thumbnail by Carolyn22
Virginia Beach, VA

It will look nice after you are done.Yes water lillies will definitely thrive. Word of caution!! We had a preformed like yousr for our 2nd pond but we got rid of it because the kois managed to jump out somehow. i think it was not deep enough. You can probably net it.

Have a wonderful Holiday to all Ponders and gardeners!!! Stay warm!!!

Koi will jump when put into a new pond - this is not unusual for koi, however 150 gallons is not large enough for koi. Goldfish would be fine though......

Virginia Beach, VA

Gold fish will be good, my only draw back is they are too prolific and will have to give them away which is hard sometimes.



Boy are they ever prolific! When we had goldies, I got to a point where I just felt badly for the poor female about being used as object - the person that coined that phrase must have been talking about the poor female goldfish!

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

I see bazillion babies in my pond but to date only one has made it to 'adult' stage. He was about 1/2" last spring and was around 2" in the fall. All the others either get eaten or don't survive the winter. I have lost two gold fish thus far this winter, grown ones that is. Found one floating under the ice and one on top of the ice by the open hole. Assume perhaps the one by the edge got caught in the ice which has been thawing and freezing rather continously. I see my koi floating around down at the bottom every so often through the hole in the ice.

Yes, I wasn't really thinking when I askedd about putting koi in this pond. But I thought we had a lady, Joy?, who had a preformed with fish. Ah, but only gold fish.

My neice and I took a bazillion goldfish babies down to the local pond about 5 years ago....... It's your frigid winters Mary!

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

Yeah. That has to be it. Although.....I don't know. If they big guys survive? Could be they stay in the rocks and get caught in the freeze that occurs there, rather than staying near the bottom where it is thawed out. ¿quién sabe?

I do think that is entirely possible...... Don't know why the goldies like to stay near the top.

Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

Goldfish are surface breathers, which is why they stay near the top...but it often makes them an easy snack for something. There are sarassa and shubunkin colored goldfish, if you want the look of koi, but without the hassle of filters and oxygen required for koi. Cannas or umbrella palm would look good along the wall for height...and then a smaller variety lily (like Tina or Panama Pacific) in the pond, with maybe a corner of water iris.

Melfa, VA(Zone 8a)

Goldfish gulp air from the top. At our old house, the zone was about the warmer end of 6. The water froze solid on the top occasionally but we did keep the pump going so I know it wasn't frozen at the bottom. Here the zone is 7b and about 20 miles south it is 8. I expect if it freezes the ice won't stay long, but I really don't know. I do know that there is not as much snow at our new house.

As for the shrubs.
From the left to the right of the board on the left. My banana tree is next to it with a couple of the larger hostas on either side. I will have to move those this spring as the leaves burned last summer.
The shrub to the right of that is a fringe flower which is actually still blooming! To the right of that one is a pink spirea. Behind the spirea, deep in the corner, are Siberian irises with SDB irises around those. The SDB's bloomed up a storm last summer but I will move them next summer to another location ( maybe around the gazebo ) as you can't see them and they are going to get even more shade. Can't see the Siberians either, so I plan on moving them out of the corner but still around the pond somewhere. To the right of that corner is an Andromeda and the gangly shrub at the right end is a Mohican viburnum ( of course the nurseryman where I bought it didn't tell me how big it grew. I will have to find out if I can keep it pruned and short!! I changed nurseries! ) There are Christmas ferns, that Arborvitae fern, a few shorter hostas, the shorter Dianthus, bronze bugle to the left, variegated bugle to the right, and heartleaf bergenias close to the front along with a few scattered Darwin tulips and some crocuses. Most of them can't be seen in that pic as the pond was put in just last week and those plants have died back.
In the pic below, you can also see the other fringe flower and the other pink spirea which is at the corner of the breezeway. That picture is of the same place last spring. The banana isn't up yet. The leafy plants are spiderwort. I am constantly pulling the strays up. I have found with a couple of my other invasive plants that if I dig a hole, line it with black plastic, cut a few slits in the bottom for drainage, then fill the hole with dirt and plants, it contains them quite well. I plan to dig my other invasives that I don't want spreading the same way next year.
We bought 6 1/2 acres. 6 acres were a former soybean field. 1/2 acre in woods. Most is now fenced in and used as horse pasture.

Melfa, VA(Zone 8a)

I have lots of different plants that I can use. Already have the umbrella palm which I called sedge in my first post. The goldfish idea is good! TY. I had both Koi and goldfish in my old pond and all finally disappeared. The one I thought was ugly lived was black on the top, but it sure looked pretty in the tank when I bought it with the gold on its bottom and sides! LOL!!!!! I didn't realize the Koi jumped so maybe that was why I found a few out of the pond!! I thought it was one of my cats! Lots of raccoons there which I figured were the culprits...I have only seen one here and they are not nearly as common. Lost my 'fishing' cat, too. She was 14yo. Sooo...goldfish!

Melfa, VA(Zone 8a)

Ooops! Forgot the pic!

Thumbnail by estrail1rider
(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

Well, that would certainly explain the goldfish losses. The koi are happy as clams circling around at the bottom. Hope I don't lose many more goldies. I have some favorites. I am amazed that I didn't lose more last year. I think the warmer weather and having more open spots may be the culprit this year.

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