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Should I build a pond??

Discussion in 'Water Features' started by Woodland, May 13, 2010.

  1. Woodland

    Woodland LawnSite Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 207

    I went to see a potential customer a week or so ago about doing some improvements to their back yard. They want a flagstone patio off the back of their house but their yard is very wet. They live at the base of a large hill and there is apparently a few springs in the area. During the spring and wet times during the year the lawn is very wet and there is one area, approximately 10 to 15' in diameter that is always wet. This area needs to be tackled to dry out the lawn and divert it to a drainage swale on one side of the property. My initial plan was to cut a drain along the back of the property to catch water running down the hillside, channel it into a "stream bed" that would end at the wet spot. Here I would put in a rain garden and then overflow water either through another stream bed or drain pipe to the swale at the edge of the property. This, along with really good drainage under the stone patio should eliminate the water problem. I heard back from the homeowners via a sketch of what they want. It includes a pond over the wet spot, complete with a pump to run water from the pond back up to the stream beginning at the edge of the property. This begs the question, how should I design, or should I design a pond??? First logic might tell you it would be a great place for a pond, but what if there isn't always standing water in that area? It sounds like the area is wet but not necessarily a pond. Therefore, if I put down pond liner I will be eliminating a route for water to come to the surface in that area, thus displacing it to another area of the lawn?! How should I approach this situation. If it helps/hurts I have never built any significant ponds before? I have a client who had one built by another company a few years back that I might consider calling in for help as a sub if need be but I'd like to see what your opinions are first.
  2. tadpole

    tadpole LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,221

    The Rain Garden sounds like your best bet. A liner Pond would be impractical because of the hydrostatic pressure created by the ground water. Pressure relief valves can be installed, but the pond water would be subject to clouding.
    Dig a test hole. See what kind of water retention you will be working with. Investigate the possible seasonal fluctuations a little little more.

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