Make a splash with these six great wildlife pond ideas for your garden.
One of the easiest ways to help our native wildlife, and to attract wildlife to your garden, is to build a wildlife pond. Over 70% of natural ponds have been lost from the British countryside in the last 100 years or so. Therefore constructing a simple wildlife pond in your garden can be of crucial importance to threatened species.
We have a tiny wildlife pond – a barrel pond. It’s really more a functional thing for the creatures than frequent our garden rather than a thing of beauty. However, if you like your garden to look beautiful as well as being a benefit to wildlife then I’ve found six beautiful wildlife ponds. Whatever your style, they will help attract wildlife to your garden. I’ve even thrown in some tips on how to create your very own wildlife pond!
Six Beautiful Wildlife Pond Ideas
Wikimedia Commons, by user Nowis
From Gardenweb user joeyb5980
By Bunny Mummy
From HGTV user catnabarn
I love that you can create wildlife ponds out of anything, and you can design them to suit your garden and budget. While I do like the architectural ponds, one of my favourite ones is in fact the one by mamasue. I love that she’s used some kind of industrial container to create her pond! I am also partial to the simple barrel pond and the no-nonsense garden pond by Bunny Mummy.
Some Tips to Consider
It’s not simply a case of digging a pond, and wildlife will come. There are several points to consider when creating a wildlife pond in your garden:
Consider Your Position
Try not to site your pond in full shade – wildlife prefer partial shade, and too much sunlight can cause an algal bloom which can deprive your pond of oxygen.
Consider When To Dig and When To Plant
Autumn or winter are good times to dig and build your pond if you’re not going down the barrel pond route. Late Spring is the best time to plant it when the water starts to warm up.
Consider The Design
If you’re digging a pond, ideally you want one side of the pond to have a long shallow slope. In the summer, when water levels can drop, this creates a vital habitat for insects such as beetles. It also allows easy access and escape for frogs and toads, and other types of wildlife.
With barrel ponds, it’s crucial to create a way out for wildlife that may have found a way in. Building up some earth on one side, or placing some rocks in there can really help animals to get out easily.
Consider the Species of Plants You Use
Avoid planting species not native to the UK. If you’re unsure what to plant then there are lots of specialist nurseries around the UK that can supply native aquatic plants. Do a web search to find a specialist nursery near you, or you can order plants online dependent on what’s in season.
Avoid Ornamental Fish
Avoid introducing ornamental fish to your pond, such as Goldfish, Koi Carp, Tench, or Orfe. These types of fish are likely to eat the very wildlife you’d be looking to thrive in your pond.
Look Out for Issues
If your pond develops a stagnant odour then it’s probably lacking in oxygen. Try either planting some more plants in your pond or introducing a pump to get a flow of water.
I think I’ve covered the main points, but there are so many tips out there for creating ponds! Do you have any tips I’ve missed that you want to add to this list? And do also check out more of my sustainable garden ideas.