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New Pond In Progress

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

So far: Still digging. Have removed all cobblestones and dug up and moved irrigation line that was in the way. Those who came to my RU last Oct. 2011 may remember a large stack of cement blocks (3 X16) that were against back of house. I have moved them out front to be used for a retainer wall under walkway coming off little patio that will slightly overhang pond. Have to move post a little that electric is attached to. I will glue carpet to cement blocks. All other walls will be plywood covered with carpet. We hold it all firmly with steel pipes driven into ground and plywood tied to pipes with steel wire then carpeted. Bottom will be old pond liners for underlayment.

Couldn't find deep enough filter falls on line to accomodate lots of filtration material so bought a large heavy duty plastic box which I plan to cut large opening in front and heat to bend into spillway for waterfalls. IF it works I will face it with small rocks. I have enough about 8" rocks to cover whole box with. Son had a good idea. He wants to build a fishing shack to fit down over it with roof that can open to get into clean everything. Make it look like water is coming out of bottom of shack. If that never happens I can rock it up.
I am going to drill and put in a bulkhead fitting for water to enter and husb. will put on lever fitting down low that will allow rinsing out sludge and crud. The waterfall I have on old pond now is so deep only way I can cup out mud is laying on the ground and scooping it out a cupful at a time. Who says you can't improve on boughten design. Worth a try anyhow.
Heres a pic of pond excavating now. Me and my little Kubota have been busy also lots of shoveling shaping corners. Liner is 15 X 25 so should end up with about 10 X 20.
Wish me luck.
Bonnie

Thumbnail by BonnieGardens
Athens, PA

Bonnie

Looking good - what type of materials would the fishing shack be made from?

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

Wow Bonnie! I'm so excited for you! Gosh, If I could ONLY get any type of equipment in my back yard, what a dream come true it would be! I'm hoping to get over there one day next week. Can't wait to see the progress...keep posting pics as you go along. :)

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Carolyn,
Don't know yet but I think bamboo would be cute. Really don't care. I'll let son be architect. If not I'll rock everything up.

MM,
There are small backhoes which are much better for pond digging than my Kubota. They are about 60 inches wide. You must be close to other houses. A bobcat is also small. (not furry type) Would sure save your back.
No matter what mechanical tool you have still requires the good old shovel here and there. We call it "the idiot stick" and I'm usually on the handle end of it. Tell you anything. LOL
I won't be home on 13th. Heart dr. keeps wasting my time with tests. Just give me a call first but I'm usually around here.

Bonnie

Athens, PA

Bonnie

The reason I ask is that our 2nd pond had a gristmill and DH made it from wood, with pretty much the arrangement you indicated. The top hinged up so that one could get to the mechanisms. Anyway, it was made from wood and the wood became so soaked with water and heavy and started to rot after a couple of years. We had to take it down - so you may want to give it some thought. Bamboo may hold up to water, better - but you may want to look into what happens when it is consistently wet.

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Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Carolyn that is so cute. Your husb. must have done a lot of work to build that. I understand about water deteriating the wood. The way I am hoping to cut the plastic box it will spill out of it directly into pond and not hit any housing. We'll see if I can cut the box to work or not. If all else fails I will have to buy a shallow filterfalls box which I really don't want. Our falls on old pond is very deep and holds lots of filtration material.
Even if housing doesn't get wet Florida weather is very hard on wood. We shall see. Nothing ventured nothing gained.
I appreciate your pic and comments.
Bonnie

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Sorry Elle I was on wrong thread.
Just posted we got 1 and 1/2 course of blocks up this morning then lightening, heavy rain and thunder started. Now sun is out beautiful again. Thats typical Fl. weather.
My grandsons and I started other side of pond with shovel cause couldn't take Kubota down into hole with husg. and son working on wall. Too dangerous.
Grandsons are 13 and 11 and strong and oxes even tho they are very skinny. I so appreciated their help. Many hands make work merry.
Think I'll get a power nap and then go back out if rain stays away.
Will take more pics as we make more progress.
Bonnie

Phoenix, AZ

Looking forward to pics as it progresses!
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(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

All your ideas are really great. I really admire your 'do it yourself' approach. To say nothing of being one heck of a lot less expensive. Only 'sweat equity.' I had forgotten that other name for a shovel. :) I have been on the end of one a good part of my life. Kind of like 'idiot mittens.'

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

Bonnie,
Don't know if you got the same storm we got last night, but holy cow! WIsh I had my pond done so it could have been filled up with free water! However, I now know I have to find a roofer, after a 3 year drought, who knew we had leaks?? If it isn't one thing, it's another....and all those " anothers " take away from the progre$$ of my new pond!

:)

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

MM,
Yes we really had a lightening, thunder and rain storm last night. Plants are super happy.
Know what you mean about roof leaks. Our roofer came back after many years and fixed them for free but one where there is a valley I think is still leaking.
If you would like his name just call me. He's competitive in pricing and his work has been slow lately so I'm sure he would be happy for the work.
Still digging pond but getting closer to ending. Like a jerk I dug out one wall too deep so won't dig so deep in other area and use that dirt to level up.
Tomorrow Jeff & sons are coming back so we will hopefully finish digging out last area. I laid cement block on wall nearest tree so we will have good sturdy base for walkway. Men started in and didn't think I could mix concrete and do it. Fooled them both. I want it done before it gets any hotter. I am not having any rocks in this pond. Collects to much debris and other junk. Only large cobblestones around the edges for coping.
I sure do sleep better lately. Wonder why. LOL
Bonnie

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

When I had the new walls put in it raised eyebrows when I said they should lay the liner up and over the lovely rock straight up and down walls. It will be a snap to clean and no nooks and crannies for crap to hide in. About one more day to go to finish. They do the work (although I help a little where I can) but I am out there watching pretty much every minute. Very stressful. And DH gives instructions about the drainage pipes from the house roof and such. Good thing too as we found that the underground pipes had been crushed terribly in many places. Plus the idiots put in perforated pipe to drain. It runs straight to an outside the yard dry well so why perf pipe in my yard???

Athens, PA

Mary
How deep is this pond going to be? Do you have any pictures? I would love to see them.

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

The pond is approximately the same size although the shape is a tad different. Still 24" in the shallows (I thought it was 3') and 3' in the deep. Swear it was four feet. I will resize some pics and post today. I have plants to add to the edges now that I have flat surfaces where I can put pots with draping plants

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Oberon,
Glad your pond is almost done. Talking about sweat equity---we sweat like wet mops today but really made some progress. Come to find out I dug pond too wide. But we have to backfill walls anyhow. Started leveling up today. Husb. insists on having 2X4's all the way around top to attach marine plywood to and then carpet. Here in the land of sand you have to have some way to stop walls from caving in and this is just his way. I'll say one thing its strong. The side in first pic is all cement block because its going to support a walkway along that edge of pond. We poured cement down inside of a few blocks and put spike nails down into concrete and then slid a 2X4 down over spikes to secure. Pond liner will be stapled all the way around top edge to 2X's. Then come down into pond. This will allow more usage of liner and not waste any like overlaping onto ground and holding down with rocks like we have done in the past.
Will try to take some pics when we start that process.
Would like to introduce you to my hole in one crew. My youngest son Jeff and his two sons Michael & Joseph. They have been such a huge help don't know what I'd do without them. Their father lays work out and they go at it under his guidance. He is a level maniac. Carries it around and checks everything. When we could no long take Kubota down into hole those 2 boys
13 and 11 shoveled up dirt into Kubota bucket and I drove it away to dump. My son & husb. made a good leveling board today that stretches all the way across so now I can move it along drop my measuring tape and get it calibrated. They also made square corners on it which will be very handy for making sure corners are really square.
With any luck pond will end up 10 X 20 and 2 feet deep.
Bonnie

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

Is that the ocean out there? How wonderfully neat! Your pond is going to be gorgeous.

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

Yay! Bonnie I can't believe how far you've gotten with your pond! I'm so excited for you, it looks great!!!

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Persistence pays off. I had 3 and 1/2 able bodied men for 2 days plus me and I can still move dirt. . The 1/2 is my husb. At 77 he is doing quite well. We are trying to get this pond really level which many ponds aren't. Wiring & plumbing and the rest of us grunt work. I have faith, we will "get er done".
I appreciate all your encouragement. Your my best cheering section.


I'll keep you informed.
Bonnie

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

I'll cheer you on to the finish line! You must be so thankful that your son has the same fishy interests as you! I'll bring him some fish too when you're all settled in your new aqua-land! I try my best to keep things level, but always drop one corner about a quarter inch, so when I try to flood the pond with fresh water, I can direct where it exits the pond (away from the house, etc)
I have my grandson on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays...and he's only 7, so not getting as much done as I'd like.
I found an amazing guy off Craig's list, who is down off of 545/Avalon area....he has tropicals and fruit trees at his house. Odd varieties, not the things you'd find at a normal nursery! Most are covering his jungley driveway, and I thought I was in heaven when I went to pick up my caviar lime tree! I told him about Dave's Garden, and he knew of it, and used to be a member. I told him we were going to get him back into it, and have a round up at his house, lol....if people KNEW what he had, he'd be sold out! It was great fun to listen to him talk about every one in Central Florida (and even Bill with the Caladiums down south!) and what he's done with all of these plant people in the past. I could have talked to him all day. :)
My water lilies are blooming, so I'm happy! The purple Tina's have been blooming for a month now, but yesterday the white-ish yellow-ish one bloomed, as well as the hot pink one! I don't remember their names because I've waited SO long for them to finally bloom! The lotus leaves are up, but so far no blooms.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

M Mary,
We have overflow pipes going out of skimmer. Old ponds goes to drainage ditch along road. New pond will have one I think into flower bed, not sure but it will have an overflow arranged by the engineer (Charlie). You are smart to run it away from your house.

By any chance were you at Our Kids Tropicals nursery on Phil. C. Peters Rd. off 545. Owned by Larry & Sherry Shatzer? If not I think its a place you would greatly enjoy. Met them at plant show in Mt. Dora in 2010 and he had plants you rarely see. His no. 407-877-6883. He asks that you call before coming. I've never gotton there yet but hope to.

Jeff & Charlie took our truck a few weeks ago to that Knox Nursery to pick up a tree. Jeff has friend that works there and he got it for him wholesale. Charlie came home with another nectarine tree for me. This one is right out front in bed #3 where it will get watered and fert.
I didn't work on pond today at all. In Mt. Dora for 2 heart tests. Told me my heart was pumping blood real well. Chloresterol better than last time. I could have told them I'm in great shape. LOL

Mary I'll let you know when we have reached the pinacle of success and pond is ready for inhabitants. New pond will be for butterfly koi and other pretty ones. I sure like a colorful pond.
Wait until you see the blue one. I think it's beautiful.
Thanks for your encouragement.
Bonnie

Virginia Beach, VA

Bonnie,
That is a huge pond!!! You sure have good family to help and will save you tons of $$$

Belle

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

Our Kids is exactly where I was! I finally got my caviar lime tree, which I haven't thusfar, been able to find. My husband went to a grove in Santa Barbera, CA, and rarely gets excited about plants, but REALLY loved them! So I've been looking ever since and OurKids had 1 left. We buzzed out there within 24 hours, to make sure we got his last one. I'm trying to have him score 2 more for me.
I can't wait to see your blue butterfly...I'm really frustrated that my koi haven't spawned this year. I was aiming for some blue butterflies by the end of summer, and moved many of the blue to the same pond, to try to get them spawning together. I have some that are huge with eggs, but soon the water will be too warm, and they'll refuse to spawn at all. I added some mops anyway, just to see if it will spark them. If not, I'm looking into Carp Hormone, to inject and get them motivated to spawn, even if I have to do it manually. I'm not as concerned with fry, as I am in keeping my big females healthy.

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

Don't know if you can see this one or not, but it's one of my blue butterflies...there's a smaller standard fin below it.

Thumbnail by MerryMary
Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

The last pic of the blue butterfly is referred to as a shusui....this one is a hana shusui, meaning the red comes up from the bottom and lower sides, up and over the top. Hirenaga means butterfly fin or long fin. So it would be a hirenaga hana shusui.

Thumbnail by MerryMary
Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

This white and orange butterfly is about 20 inches or more. It's a kujaku. I have 2 of them that are that size. I love their long tails and they are both very friendly.

Thumbnail by MerryMary
Ocoee (W. Orlando), FL(Zone 9b)

I fell in love with this one, years ago, because of it's very large scales. Some people call them dragon scales, some call them armour scales. The bright yellow color really got me excited! This one is probably somewhere around 24 inches.

Thumbnail by MerryMary
Athens, PA

Mary

such gorgeous fish - I like the large scales as well. Is there a name for the shishui when they are mostly blue? I am curious - I don't know the names as well as you do. Also, I was wondering how late can the zipper show on a fish? I have a fish that looks like he is trying to form a zipper on his back, but he is 3-4 years old.

Bonnie

Your pond is going to be stunning. Can't wait to see the finished project! You are so fortunate to have so much help!

It finally stopped raining long enough to be able to sit out by the pond last night after work. Hoping it stays that way awhile as I look forward to being out with my fish all winter!

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

Thanks Carolyn...
Shusui is all they call the blue ones. The zipper down the back should be there if the fish is already 3 years old, but I've had late bloomers of other colors before, so there's always a maaaaybbeeee out there! There are also blue kikokuryu that are like a blue doitsu (no or minimal scales) or blue matsuba (many times have a white head and fins)

The yellow one has blue eyelids, so it's really a very pretty fish. I was trying to take pics of a lot of the different colors, so I could match them with names for you, but they don't like to stay still!

:)

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

Holy Cow, Mary. You really have the names and mixes of names down pat. I love your fish. I may try one more koi before winter. I just hate to give up on them. But also hate to have them die just because I am so bullheaded I want to figure a way to have them make it through the winter. Maybe one of the clues is to only have one or two larger ones. Larger ones being 10-15"

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Mary,
The smaller blue in your first pic is exactly what my blue looks like. He's not a long fin but heck he's blue. Someday I hope to have a shusui that is butterfly. The larger top blue is butterfly isn't it? How long is it? Your 24" gold one reminds me of my Blondie & Goldie. Heavily scaled. I am concerned at their age (bought 6-6-09) that I haven't got eggs from them yet. Both of them look really fat. I believe they spawned in April of last year according to my garden journal. I read someplace that expelling the eggs manually was better for them than just leaving them inside. I think you agree with that idea. Just didn't want to get them shook up before moving them to larger pond. Have you tried manual expelling just before a move? I sure don't want to cause any problems like I had right after Orlando show. I remember how you admired Blondie & Goldie, now I know why.
I hope you keep trying for some shusui butterfly. When I bought my first 3 koi which I still have they were 4" and you saw how large they are now.
Glad you got your caviar lime tree.
Ok time to get back into the pond today. Tomorrow & Sat. can work all day.
Bonnie

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Forgot to add Blondie and Goldie are long fin. Their tails are really beautiful.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

Tried to get some pics but they wouldn't pose very well.

Thumbnail by BonnieGardens Thumbnail by BonnieGardens Thumbnail by BonnieGardens Thumbnail by BonnieGardens Thumbnail by BonnieGardens
Athens, PA

Bonnie

Great pictures! I know Mary has mentioned in previous years that temps warmed up too quickly some years and she did not get a spawning. You might want to ask her about it - from what I have read, females should be 3 years old to spawn and males 2 years old, so your's are definitely old enough.

(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

That fifth koi is kind of different. lol. what a great size pond. With the trees for shade. I added two trees but only one will actually shade the pond. But I think the fish will like it. They don't like feeling so exposed while the lily pads are growing.

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

My fish just love that floating island with hyacinths in it. In afternoon old pond gets lots of sun so it will help keep them cooler. New pond will have section that will always be in shade but in that one I think I maybe able to grow some water lillies or lotus. Time will tell.
Bonnie

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

Bonnie,
I love your yellow one in the middle picture! I have a jumbo yellow butterfly, but it has normal yellow fins, and I love the ones with white fins like yours! Awesome! It looks like you have a blue asagi down by it's tail?

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

It rained yesterday, so I used my time making my spawning mops (even if I don't end up using them this year) It's my normal yarn hand made mops, tied to a pool noodle. I made 4 of them, so can pull them one at a time IF they end up covered in eggs, and will put them in my small preformed ponds to hatch.

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(Mary) Anchorage, AK(Zone 4b)

How neat. I wish I could at least catch some of my goldfish eggs that way but I don't have any place to put them. I guess I could put a fine mesh net in the pond to keep them safe but then I have to feed them. Suggestions?

Virginia Beach, VA

I had never heard of spawning mats. i will be prepared next year.

Belle

Clermont, FL(Zone 9a)

M Mary,
You are right. I bought that little asagi from a freeder that was at the show in Orlando. So far he appears to be very healthy.
I made my spawning mats exactly the ssame way and soaked them in water to make sure any dye in yarn wouldn't come out later. I also bought 2 new string mop heads and left them on the handles so I could just lift them out of pond if I see any eggs on them. Seemed practical to me but may sound nutty to others.
Tried to cut down plastic box for waterfalls and it was to unstable and would have had to have a frame built around it so came in got on PC and ordered a 32 filterfalls from Best Nest as they had size I needed and price I didn't need. Heck I figure for all the work we are putting into this pond it may as well be the best it can be. This way I can put lots of filtration medium down into it like my old one is. That and filtration material in skimmer and UV I am hoping will keep pond clean. It's working fine on the old one. Charlie is going to set it up on ground level to save my back. We will camoflauge it some way. Either Jeff's idea for a fish shack or I can rock it all up.
Today I got bottom all racked and level and had to take out 2" more of dirt. Plus I dug up lots of roots and took them out also. Plywood is up on sides so its ready for carpet. Got another heart test Mon. morning and babysit at 6AM on Wed. and other than that I will be in the pond working.
I moved to backyard and stretched out liner and measured it today. I think Charlie has size figured too close but we shall see. If I have to put dirt back in he's going to hear a headfull. It would make it a little shallower but liner has to go in. Have to dig shallow ditch from pump that goes down inside skimmer to other end for waterfalls. My goal is at the end of next week I want liner in. I'm praying I make it.
Keep cheering me on. It helps a lot.
Mary, Jeff helped for a while today. He was heartsick. He lost his 3 yr. old oranda Curley. He said he cried. Fish farm folks told him orandas are hard to keep healthy. I told him you would bring him some fish and it made him smile. He has better luck with koi but he likes orandas real well. You know how we get attached to some fish I'm sure.
Jeff's days off are Tues. & Wed. now so I hope to have all carpet stapeled in and ready for liner on Tuesday while I have extra help. I struggled with it today and that thing ain't light. I rolled it back up and brought it back out front in Kabota bucket. I will drop it into pond and then unroll when we are ready for it to go in. That Kabota sure helps me.
Forgot to take pics today. I'll go out and do that right now.
Bonnie

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