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Building a Koi Pond (Page 4 of 4)



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Decide if you want a raised pond or one that's below ground level.  Raised ponds are more sensitive to temperature fluctuations and can be more difficult to landscape, but they offer the following benefits:  1) convenient cleaning and draining; 2) protection of the pond from wind-blown debris and litter on the ground; 3) protection of the pond from flooding.


When constructing the pond, bear in mind the following guidelines:


1)  It is better to have vertical walls for smaller ponds in order to promote equal distribution of temperature in the water.  Larger ponds can have sloping walls. 


2)  You may want to provide shelves at the edge of the pond if you're planning to have plants in your pond.  Shelves are used for supporting aquatic baskets where the plants are planted.  Shelves are usually placed 12 or more inches below the water level, and can be used as a step when cleaning your pond.  They can also be used by animals accidentally falling into the water to escape.  Unfortunately, they can also be used by predators for convenience when hunting your koi.  Decide if you want shelves in your pond or not.



Figure 5.  Shelves are good for supporting plants,

but they can support predators as well.  Decide if

you want to have them.



3)  Be sure that the top surface of the outline of your pond are at the same level all around the pond.  You need a level hose to make sure of this, since merely looking at the pond will not work.  You don't want to see the water level visually dropping off from one end of the pond to the other just because the outline of the  pond is sloping.


4)  Install a center drain at the pond bottom and make the entire floor surface slope towards this drain. Your filtration system will extract pond water for filtration from this drain. 


5)  Make your pond cleaning-friendly.  Check if you can easily net debris out of your pond from various points on the bottom.




The time to design your filter system is while you're designing your pond.  Designing it as an after-thought can be expensive and may even limit the effectiveness of your filters.  Filtration can be tricky, so try to get familiar with filtration basics before even starting the construction of your pond.  For example, filters should be as large as possible in relation to the pond size, and should not be less than 10% of the pond in water volume.  Also, the water transfer rate of the filter must be high enough to impel the entire pond volume within one hour.  Furthermore, filters must consist of two or more stages, and should be capable of both mechanical and biological filtration. For more information on proper water filtration, see the article 'The Basics of Koi Pond Filtration'




Building a koi pond is not easy, but the rewards of having a well-constructed koi pond are immeasurable.  As in any endeavor, success in building a koi pond depends on careful planning and execution. 


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