Best “Stay-Cation” design ideas for the backyard!

Best “Stay-Cation” design ideas for the backyard!

“Stay-Cation” design ideas for the backyard!

Your very own destination spot – your backyard!

Your home should be a place you want to escape to – not from

With many Americans choosing not to travel this year – due to the recent health warnings – we encourage you to invest back into your property instead, by creating your very own “stay-cation” you can still sit back, relax and enjoy any time off, from the comfort of your own home!

Your next Vacation Destination

The term “stay-cation” is trending. People are spending their money on improving their homes and less on traveling internationally this year. We suggest you “stay-cation” at home without compromising the benefits of a trip! Feel like you are on vacation by creating an outdoor space, you can de-stress, unwind and enjoy anytime of the year!

A typical pond costs about the same price as your next family vacation would, but you get to enjoy this expense for years and years to come…

Ideas for a personal “Stay-Cation” spot

Koi Pond (see above for before and after): Koi Ponds, also called “water gardens” are a man-made ecosystem body of water that are home to koi fish and turtles. Imagine stepping outside your home into your very own backyard oasis, complete with a beautiful water garden or koi pond. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the soothing sights and sounds of running water and beautiful koi fish. Feel the cares of the world slip away as you enjoy your personal backyard pond!

Pondless WaterfallWaterfalls are extremely low maintenance, energy efficient, and attract a variety of wildlife. Pondless waterfalls retain water within a hidden underground basin. Children love exploring nature in and around the waterfall. Whether you add a waterfall to your front or backyard, be sure to locate it near a window so the melodious sounds can be enjoyed from inside your home, too!

Bubbling Rocks and Basalt Fountains: A natural look paired with the sound of water. These can be added to any space in your yard, making them an ideal choice if you want a smaller water feature. Butterflies and birds will enjoy the refreshment your fountain brings to the garden.

Disapearing Urns, Vases, Spillway Bowls: A more formal and elegant look – options for urns are endless. These fountain work by pumping water contained in a large, in-ground reservoir up and through your fountain of choice, allowing the water to flow back into the reservoir.

Interactive experience for the whole family

Many vacation destination revolves around a body of water, whether it’s a cabin by the lake, or a hotel on the beach in Hawaii, people LOVE water and interacting with it.

Be more engaged with nature

Koi Ponds, also called “water gardens” are one of the most rewarding features you can add to a backyard or patio. Imagine stepping outside your home into your very own backyard oasis, complete with a beautiful water garden or koi pond. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the soothing sights and sounds of running water and beautiful koi fish. Feel the cares of the world slip away as you enjoy your personal backyard pond!

Spend quality time relaxing by your water garden with family and friends. You’ll wonder why you waited so long to enhance your yard with a beautiful Aquascape water garden!

Dreaming of your own water feature?

Get Expert AdviceBook a Design Consult

View Our ACTIVE Contractors LIC #715731
California Waterscapes is a DBA of Pacific Pavingstone Inc.

A Backyard Designed for Dogs

A Backyard Designed for Dogs

A Backyard Designed for Dogs

A pond is a cure for “Dog Boredom”

Designed with our furry friends in mind…

Did you know that dogs LOVE ponds? Even the ones who don’t like to get wet, love being around water features… Giving your dog something ever-changing in their environment – such as a pond or pondless waterfall – actually stimulates their mental health. Dogs that have plenty of stimulation on a daily basis are easier to train and happier all-around.

Just ask these two pups – Daisy and Ruby – they are true pond-loving pooches that spend the majority of their time outside by the pond. Every time we visit, these two happy dogs are already outside by the pond, just waiting to show us around.

A cure for “Dog Boredom”

The American Kennel Club says “Your dog, intelligent creature that he or she is, also needs mental exercise. A mentally stimulated dog is a happy dog.” (

Ever wonder why some dogs excessively bark, chew up furniture or scratch up doors? These are all symptoms of Dog Boredom… Yes, it’s a real thing, and can be improved if you give your pup enough stimulation to challenge his or her mind. Ponds provide a natural place to keep fish and plants and are beaming with life (stimuli).

Cesar Millan (the dog whisperer) says “Just like people, dogs get bored with the same old everyday routine. Keeping them mentally challenged and constantly exposing them to new things is just as important as taking them for walks and exercising them. Bored dogs develop destructive behaviors and take their negative energy out on things like your furniture”

“Dogs are bred to complete tasks such as hunting and herding. When they aren’t able to fulfill these types of duties, they can get restless. Take him for a long walk, hike, or SWIM.” Cesar Millan (Our Pond Customer of 2014).

View Cesar’s project photos here – Cesar Millan’s Desert Oasis

Poodles, Border Collies, German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Doberman Pinschers, Sheepdogs, Labradors, Papillon, Rottweilers, Cattle Dogs and Australian Shepard’s are some of the most intelligent breeds of dogs, which need more mental stimulation than any others.

What can we do?

All pet owners are guilty of leaving our furry friend at home while at work or running errands, it isn’t realistic for this to change, so what can we do? Designing your backyard design around your furry friends can bring serenity and entertainment to the entire family (both dogs and humans alike).

Our clients are constantly giving us feedback on how their pets are adapting to their new environment after we have installed a water feature, and they always say the same thing – “Our dogs LOVE their new water feature!”

Ponds are mother nature’s entertainment and life force. A natural water feature provides a place for your pets to cool off in the summer months and endless hours of mental stimulation.

Are ponds safe for my pets?

Backyard ecosystem ponds are incredibly safe for your dogs. Pond water is naturally treated and filtered for any chemicals or harmful nutrients, creating a completely natural and safe environment for pets to interact with.

If you are concerned for teacup/small dogs or elderly dogs who may not be able to swim properly, a Pondless Waterfall is a great option! Pondless waterfalls are only about 3” – 6” deep and provide running water and a great place to cool off for your dogs.

My dogs immediately jump in the pond and sit in the stream when I let them out, it’s great having something to look at other than a lawn in my backyard now, and now my dogs are not very excited to leave the house anymore… neither am I…. ha ha!”

Dreaming of your own water feature?

Get Expert AdviceBook a Design Consult

View Our ACTIVE Contractors LIC #715731
California Waterscapes is a DBA of Pacific Pavingstone Inc.

Building Logan Paul’s Dream Home

Building Logan Paul’s Dream Home

Creating Logan Paul’s Dream Koi Pond…

We heard Logan Paul’s cry for help to find the “absolutely most next level pond builders in the game” to complete his dream home vision at The Maverick House. We responded with exactly that, teaming up with over 30 Aquascape Contractors to build the most stunning koi pond for his “zen garden” you could ever imagine.

Working with a completely flat backyard we needed to come up with a design that still looked like it occured naturally in this setting. Our team of 30 contractors came up with an hour-glass shaped pond design, a 2 foot waterfall and a stunning hand crafted bridge that connected this “zen garden” and gym to the rest of this backyard.

Can this pond be built within 24 hours?!?

All we could say was “challenge accepted”!

Building a pond this size could easily take 3-4 days for any pond builder’s crew. We had to complete this project within 24 hours, so we put our best foot forward, taking our 20 years expeirence into account, along with the other 30 contractors that came together from all over the US and we went to work.

We couldn’t be happier with how it turned out and hosting all of these amazing contractors was our pleasure!



Watch Logan Paul’s vlogs of our project!

Dreaming of your own water feature?

Get Expert AdviceBook a Design Consult

Should You Use a Pond Kit or Create a Custom-Built Pond?

Ponds are growing in popularity in Southern California, and it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise since there are many benefits of backyard ponds. Imagine coming home every day, walking into your backyard and relaxing by a trickling waterfall leading to a pond filled with koi fish. It’s a great way to unwind without having to leave your home!

If you’ve been thinking about adding a pond to your property, you can either do it yourself  with a pond kit or hire a professional contractor to do the work for you. Pond kits are popular among homeowners who choose to do it themselves, but they’re also widely used by contractors as a starting point for a custom-built pond.

Pond Kits vs. Custom-Built Pond

Pond kits are pre-built and include all of the materials necessary to create a pond in your backyard. Pond kits vary from company to company, but many of the kits include items such as:

  • Skimmer
  • Filter
  • Pump
  • Hose
  • Liner
  • Underlayment
  • Fittings and Sealants
  • Maintenance treatments
  • Instructions

The idea of a backyard pond kit is to take the guesswork out of trying to gather the right materials and assemble a pond. The kits come in a variety of sizes, however some common sizes include:

  • 8’ x 11’
  • 11’ x 16’
  • 21’ x 26’

Professional Contractors utilize pond kits as well. In many cases, custom-built ponds start out by using the materials provided in a pond kit, but professionals take it one step further by bringing the aesthetics of a natural looking pond. After installing hundreds of ponds, the pros have discovered that the secret of the natural look of ponds is the creation of plant pockets and the placement of rocks and boulders in just the right way.

Large Pond Kits: Do It Yourself or Hire a Professional?

Do a quick online search, and you’ll find an abundance of backyard pond kits available for purchase. For do-it-yourself homeowner, you can buy a pond kit and install it yourself with the help of the provided instructions. However, there are challenges involved, including elevation, choosing the right location, filling the pond and adding hardscape elements such as large stones which could easily weigh up to 100-150 pounds each.

Contractors have experience building ponds – both from pond kits and from scratch. They understand that building a pond is both an art and a science. Plus, a contractor can help you come up with a design that’s unique to your style and property while making sure everything is operating properly.

Here are some examples of homeowner built ponds that just don’t look quite right:

pond kits

Whereas ponds built by pros look more natural and coexist with the surrounding context:

custom built pond kits

Reasons to Consider Hiring a Professional

If you want more than just a simple backyard pond, it’s often beneficial to hire a professional. A professional pond contractor can help you choose the right water feature for your property and customize it to your exact specifications.

Here are some other reasons to consider hiring a professional:

1. They Have Experience with Design and Installation

You can install a backyard pond kit on your own, and some people have done it with very few problems. However, if something doesn’t work right or you make a mistake, you may be stuck tearing up sections, spending more money, or worse, starting over. This leads to more work (and frustration) on your end.

Professional contractors have many years of experience both designing and installing water features. They can help you determine the right location on your property, choose decorative materials, or add safety features if you have children. This experience leads to a better product for you.

2. They Can Customize a Pond for Your Property

While professionals often start out by using a pond kit, they can mix and match items to choose the best materials for your project. Plus, they’ll be able to provide you with a more customized water feature by adding in additional landscaping and hardscaping elements. This allows you to create a pond or water feature that best matches your style and is unique to your home.

3. It Takes Less Time

If you’re installing a pond without the help of a contractor, it can take several weekends to get the job done, and you’ll likely need to enlist the help of a few friends. On the other hand, a professional contractor can typically put together a pond in one day, and they may only need to come back a second day for additional landscaping work.

Getting Started With a Custom-Built Pond or Pond Kits

There are many factors to consider when adding a pond to your Southern California property including sizing, placement, material selection, pond depth, planting, landscaping, fish and more. If you want a customized and unique pond or waterfall, it’s important that you work with an experienced company.

A water feature installation company, such as California Waterscapes, can help you choose the right type of water feature for your home and guide you through the entire process from design to installation. In addition, they’ll be able to oversee all aspects of your project, answer any questions you may have and ensure you’re satisfied with the end result.

At California Waterscapes, we offer design and installation services for ponds, other water features, and pondless waterfalls. To learn more about how we can help you with your next pond project, check out our gallery and contact us today for a free quote.

3 Steps to a Gorgeous Pond Design or Pondless Waterfall Plan

Water features can make a statement in any backyard project. Whether it’s a fish pond featuring a dramatic waterfall or a pondless waterfall with gorgeous night lighting, these types of additions add a lot of value to your backyard both in terms of aesthetic appeal and enjoyment for the whole family.

But since no two backyards are exactly alike, having the proper water feature or pond design for your yard is of critical importance. It’s more than just fitting the space properly. The feature must also look like a natural addition to its surroundings. A good design will take into account many factors including your wants, the layout of your specific property, accessibility issues, and more.

Here’s what you can expect during the water feature design process:

1. Initial Consultation for your pondless waterfall

Before officially getting started with any design work, a free consultation is an opportunity to discuss the basic ideas of the project including simple details of what you’re looking for in a water feature or pond design for your Los Angeles home. Getting an understanding of the main features you’d like to have will help you get a good sense of what you can expect to pay.

pondless waterfall design

Of course, you should understand that this may change if you decide to add more features to your design. But an initial quote should at least give you a good starting point as you begin the process of designing your backyard water feature. The initial consultation for your water feature is absolutely free.

2. Design Consultation

After getting an initial quote and agreeing upon an approximate project budget, if you plan to move forward with a water garden design, the design consultation is the time to establish specifics. This is not a step to be taken lightly. Many would say the design phase may even be the most important step of the entire process. That’s because everything that follows will adhere to what was established with the design. In fact, a good design can be the difference between a water feature or pond installation that goes smoothly from start to finish, and one that goes astray.

pondless waterfall

During a design consultation, you should expect to get into project specifics. These are some of the features that will make your project one-of-a-kind. With a custom design the end result is a water feature that is specific to your backyard, with all of your personal wants and needs addressed. The last thing you want is a cookie cutter pond or pondless waterfall design that everybody else has, too.

In order to get to the bottom of what kind of water feature is right for you, be prepared to answer questions like:

  • Why do you want a water feature?
  • What features or additions are most important to you?
  • Who from your family will use it most often?
  • How much time do you have for pond maintenance?
  • What other plans do you have for the surrounding space?

Putting together a smart water feature or pond design is not exactly a small feat. There are many factors that designers consider during this phase.

These include:

  • Water feature placement
  • The shape of the pond or water feature
  • Size and depth of ponds or features
  • The size and accessibility of your yard
  • What plants will be used
  • What rocks will be added
  • Inclusion of fish (if a pond is chosen)
  • Lighting for the pond, waterfalls, etc.

With all of these elements to take into consideration, it’s no doubt that the design phase is important. Getting all those details down will make all the difference in the world when it’s time to move into the installation phase.

3. Putting your Water Garden or Pond Design into Action

Once you have the design complete, the fun really begins. A good design coupled with some detailed planning will ensure that the installation process goes smoothly. This is important as the installation is definitely a time when critical mistakes can be made that will impact the end result.

With so many steps involved in the design process as well as the proper installation, selecting a true professional is essential. You want to hire someone who truly knows their stuff. A lot of contractors claim to install ponds and water features, but if it’s not something they do a lot of, they simply won’t have the experience or the know-how to get the job done right from start to finish.

At California Waterscapes, we have both design and installation experience and expertise for ponds, and other water features such as pondless waterfalls. We can help you choose the right water feature for your home and guide you through the entire process from design to installation. Or, if you’re still in the brainstorming phase on what pond design options you might choose from your Los Angeles home, we have plenty of water feature and pond design ideas that you can browse.

When you’re ready to talk to California Waterscapes about a pondless waterfall, give us a call at 818-244-4000 or contact us today for a free quote.