How to tell if a pond will hold water?

Discussion in 'Water Features' started by bobby5, Jun 14, 2010.

  1. bobby5

    bobby5 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    Im wanting to build about a 1/2 to 2/4 acre farm pond on my property. the location i want to build it in already has a small spring on it which has never went dry and the area i want to build it in has plenty of runoff to keep it full. The only fear i have is it has quite a bit of ledge rock and is in the woods. Would the pond always be full of leaves during the fall and eventually fill it up? Anybody dug a pond that held water with a bunch of ledge rock? Who would be the best bet to contact to see if a pond would hold water. I want to be pretty certain it would hold water because id have to take out about 5 nice oak trees to dig it and dont want to waste those trees on a pond that wont hold.

  2. ajslands

    ajslands LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,238

    I'm sure the Mosquitos will enjoy a pond in the woods.

    Uhh leaves in pond in wooded area. I think you can answer that one on your own.

    Woa woa woa! What's the diffrence between 1/2 an acre and 2/4 of an acre?
    Posted via Mobile Device

    fill it up and if it's all gone the next day, then more than likely theirs a leak.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2010
  3. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    A Pond located in the woods will rapidly fill with organic debris (Leaf Drop; Run-Off from surrounding forest floor). It would end up being a mucky, smelly, mosquito-infested eyesore. The water would more than likely stay brown due to the Tannic Acid in the Oak leaves and pollen. As to whether or not it will retain water? Probably not as the ledge rock probably runs to a fair depth in the soil. However,You do have a couple of options.
    1. Excavate (actually overexcavate) and backfill with layer of heavy clay or clay-based soil with Bentonite added and compact, compact, compact.
    2. Excavate, removing as much exposed rock as possible, and line with geotextile and either polyethylene or polypropylene liner.

    Are there any Farm Ponds in your immediate area? If not, that should tell you something.
    You might consider contacting your appropriate county agency (you don't say where you are located). They will tell you whether or not your idea is workable.

    From where I sit, I would scrap the idea as too expensive and problematic unless I had an existing open area available and even then the expense might be more than I would consider.
  4. allinearth

    allinearth LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 612

    Try and dig a test hole. Watch it for a summer and see how it holds. Building a pond over rock is def. risky.
  5. bobby5

    bobby5 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    There are 2 ponds within a 1/2 mile of me. the place i was thinkin about building it would be a ideal place with the runoff and it already has a spring thats never went dry but the rock is the only thing that worries me. Would a aerator help with the leaves that would fall in it? The pond wouldnt totally be in the woods just about half of it. If i did it and it didnt hold water would a liner work and how much do they cost for a 3/4 acre pond, how long do they last? I always wanted a pond on my property i think it adds value to your property and i think they look good when there properly taken care of.
  6. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    Have you talked to the owners of the 2 ponds near you? Are they natural or man-made? If the latter, how did they construct them?
    For info on the liner, contact- or call 800-448-3873.
    Have you considered constructing the pond completely out of the woods and running a constructed stream from the Spring head to the pond (assuming that there is some grade to work with)? This would eliminate the leaf litter problem.

Share This Page