After a long day, coming home to your very own relaxing spot makes for an indulging treat. A water feature does more than enhancing your outdoor spaces. (more…)
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.
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.
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.
- 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.
If you want a water feature installed in your yard, it pays to know the types of garden ponds you can choose from so you can plan ahead of time. Installation costs vary depending on the type and size of water feature you’re looking to build. With that said, let’s take a look at the different garden pond types you can explore.
Different Types of Ponds
1. Pondless Waterfalls
This type of water feature is ideal for families with little children or homeowners who want to enjoy the soothing sound of running water but are not ready yet for the extra maintenance work.
A pondless waterfall can be constructed even in a limited space and can also be designed several ways depending on your preferences. The flowing water from atop the falls that seems to disappear as it falls on the ground gives this water feature a dramatic effect.
Pondless waterfalls require minimal upkeep. However, it’s important to check the basin regularly to ensure there’s enough water to keep the falls running. One sign you may need to add water is when the pump starts to produce a gurgling sound.
2. Preformed Ponds
These tub-like ponds come in various sizes, depths, and shapes.
A preformed pond requires minimal investment although maintenance can turn out more challenging. When deciding which preformed pond to choose, consider the location where you want it installed. But actually, every backyard pond requires careful consideration of the space where you’re building it as it should be protected from runoff.
For maintenance, meanwhile, you will have to check the system regularly and add beneficial bacteria as needed. Talk to your pond builder which brand cleaner they recommend to get rid of waste and excess nutrients.
Note as well that once a preformed pond cracks or leaks, it will have to be replaced. That said, a preformed pond can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your yard but may not be able to offer the longevity other backyard pond types can.
3. Ecosystem Ponds
When properly maintained, this type of pond can attract wildlife right into your yard.
Several elements are needed to ensure that the ecosystem works. Mechanical and biological filters should be present as well as an effective plumbing system. You need not stress on this part though because your pond installer can take care of the heavy work for you. It’s good though to also familiarize yourself with the process.
Rocks and gravel also have to be added to the system. They are used to line the edges of the pond structure to give it a natural look that blends with the existing landscape. Of course, the pond would not be complete without the fish and aquatic plants.
Here are few more resources you can check out:
- Choosing the best stones for your garden pond
- Deciding which fish to add to your backyard pond
- Planting water lilies
- Step-by-step pond cleaning guide
Something to Remember About Types of Ponds
Pond construction may take longer or cost more depending on the scale of the project, so be sure to inquire about the estimated cost. Choose from the garden pond types we’ve talked about ahead of time.
A professional pond builder should be able to help you design and build a water feature that works for your budget and satisfies your requirements. Don’t hesitate to request for referrals when deciding which contractor to work with.
Some homeowners are reluctant of installing a water feature in their yard fearing it would only attract mosquitoes.
It’s only natural to worry as these blood-sucking insects are associated with a number of potential diseases, with the West Nile virus being the most recent threat to California.
A water feature, however, when properly maintained, can keep mosquitoes at bay.
How To Get Rid of Mosquitoes Outdoors
If you already have a pond installed in your yard and feel that mosquitoes ruin your day of fun and are causing you headaches, then it’s high time to deal with these annoying visitors. Let’s talk about few tips how you can do this the natural way.
Get Rid of Standing Water. Mosquitoes reproduce in water. If you eliminate standing water, you also prevent mosquitoes from breeding. Any area in your yard can serve as a potential breeding ground for mosquitoes. While it could take up to 14 days before a mosquito fully develops, it’s best to take immediate action. Look into children’s toys, pet dishes, buckets, and other tools in your yard such as a shovel or wheelbarrow. Empty them with water and consider turning them over when when not in use. Watch out as well for standing water when irrigating your plants.
Ensure Regular Maintenance. Clean after piles of twigs and leaves sitting on your yard. Check your pond as well for water that may have been trapped between the stones and consider filling them up with gravel. Thick aquatic plants crowding the water surface serves as a refuge for mosquitoes. Trim them and remove dead leaves or grass to allow water to circulate.
Encourage Water Movement. Mosquitoes love non-flowing water. Consider installing a feature in your pond such as a fountain or waterfalls. This will help break the surface area and encourage movement in the water, hence keeping mosquito-laying eggs at bay.
Add Hungry Fish. Fish don’t prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs on the water, but they do feed on larvae and prevent them from developing into adult mosquitoes. Koi does not target larvae so you might want to add small fish to your pond such as goldfish and guppies. These types of fish will go along well with your koi and come after the mosquito larvae.
For your family’s safety, it’s important to take necessary precautions against mosquitoes. Manage mosquitoes as early as possible, and enjoy your pond in and day out with the help of these tips to getting rid of mosquitoes.
Adding a fountain can dramatically change your outdoor space with the sights and sounds of water, and can be enjoyed by anyone without breaking the bank. The bubbling urn can be done on a smaller budget and is great for homeowners with limited space. This 30″ decorative urn feature is nestled atop an underground reservoir that houses the water, re-circulating pump and plumbing. The water is pumped up through the stone feature where it falls back into the reservoir for reuse.
Spitters are fountains that work very similarly to the bubbling urn, but usually come as sculptures like the Tucan shown here. They still use a reservoir basin underneath the sculpture called the Aquabasin.
Aquabasin’s are large reservoirs that can support up to 2,000 pounds of weight on top and hold up to 75 gallons of water, it is also compatible with any urn, spitter, or sculpture we have available. These features can easily be installed within a couple of hours as a do-it-yourself project or by a professional pond installer from California Waterscapes.
California Waterscapes provides a wide variety of decorative pieces that can be used in conjunction with the AquaBasin™, from ceramic urns to brass sculptures to carved stone structures.For more information on these fountains or to have one installed for you, give us a call at 888-600-7224.
The water gardening lifestyle is becoming more and more a way of life in Southern California.
More and more home owners are stepping out of their work-a-day world of deadlines, cell phones, traffic jams, anti social co-workers and entering the tranquil sanctuary of their own water garden.
How many people do you know who escape from our technical concrete jungle and go to a lush green golf course, escape for a hike in the mountains, venture into a forest or lay at the beach soaking in the sounds of cascading waves?
40 to 60 hours a week most of us are surrounded by computers, pagers, mass media, Xerox machines and all the other things that come in this vast sea of circuits and technology that is anything but natural.
C-3PO from Star Wars may feel at home in this environment, but for most of us humanoids, this daily interaction leaves us with a longing to escape to Mother Nature.
And that is the pleasure of water gardening! The Zen atmosphere and tranquility of Mother Nature right in your backward. No need to jump on a plane or to drive hours out of the city to feel close to nature.
Imagine sipping tea with your spouse, listening to soothing sounds of water spilling over the rocks and into your pond. Colorful Koi swim about a lily filled pond. You take a deep breath and inhale the aroma of the surrounding plants and flowers. A blue jay lands, skips over to the water and bathes in the stream. All this while having a quality conversation with your spouse that you can’t have in front of the television.
Water gardening provides a hobby for the whole family to enjoy. It’s very common to hear a home owner describe how their water feature has increased communication between them and their spouse, how it’s lured the children away from the mesmerizing effect of video games and TV with pond critters that are far more interesting.
Water features also make an excellent place to entertain friends and family. Chat with neighbors over coffee or just to spend some quality alone time with oneself.
The new eco-friendly water features support all kinds of beautiful creatures to enhance that close-to-nature feeling. Fish, frogs, Koi, dragonflies and turtles are a few of the beautiful critters that you can purchase and or naturally attracted to your pond. Birds of all kinds visit often to drink and bath in the clear water. There are a variety of lilies, flowers, aquatic plants, and grasses that enhance the beauty and fragrance of your water garden.
This a great time to add a natural pond and waterfall to your backyard. Call today or fill out a Free Estimate form on this page to receive your Free Design Consultation with one of our expert water gardening professionals.