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What’s more soothing than a water garden? It can be the size of a bowl, or it can take up acres of space. Most homeowners’ water gardens are more modest, but the sounds of running water and the sight of animal life, beautiful flowers and vegetation provide the same refreshment and sense of peace.

Some water gardens really are contained in pots. The one caveat is that these tiny gardens shouldn’t be put in terra cotta pots because these pots have a sealant that’s toxic to fish. The pot should be made of fiberglas or plastic. With that out of the way, all this water garden needs is a little pump and filter to keep the water fresh. Some good plants for a potted water garden are water poppy and dwarf horsetail.

If the gardener wants an outdoor water garden, they should consider the location of the garden and what style they want it to be. The garden should be placed where it can be best seen and heard. Would that be near the kitchen, or the livingroom, or the patio? More care has to be given if the water garden is going to be built in. A freestanding water garden can be moved around if the homeowner doesn’t like the original site.

Before the water garden is built, the homeowner should consult an electrician and make sure that it can have safe access to electricity and that the electricity can be easily cut off if necessary. The homeowner will also need a source of water. Usually all they need is the water from their garden hose. Also, the water garden ideally should be built on a flat surface, but many beautiful water gardens are terraced.

The water garden’s pool has to be at least 18 inches deep and can be made out of masonry, but masonry’s a bit expensive. Vinyl liners are also good for a water garden and cost less. The pump and filter, which should be bought together, recirculates the water and aerates it. The size of the pump is going to depend on the volume of the pool and how elaborate the homeowner wants their water garden to be. The more elaborate the water features are in the garden, the more power the pump has to provide. A pump and filter should be able to recirculate half of the pool’s volume every hour. The volume is determined by multiplying the length of the pool by its width and its depth. Multiplying that number by 7.5 will tell the homeowner how many gallons are in their pool, and they’ll know that half of that amount will need to be pumped every hour.

Once the pool is filled with fresh water it should be allowed to sit for ten days before installing the plants and about a month before adding fish. The plants should be a mix of heights, textures and colors to add interest.

Once a pool is set up it should be easy to maintain. It’s an ecosystem and if it’s healthy it won’t need too much maintenance. What’s mostly left for the homeowner to do is enjoy it!

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