Building a waterfall is easier than you think and will add a new dimension to your pool.
When building a waterfall, as with any garden project, you must first consider the design and make a plan. The biggest mistake that people make when planning a pond waterfall is to err on the large side. For a pond measuring 12 ft x 14 ft you should think in terms of a fall of 18-24 inches. The width of the waterfall should be in proportion to the size of your pond. The important point is to make sure that the scale of your construction fits in with the surrounding features and does not spoil the balance of your overall garden design.
The next question that has to be answered is the type of construction you wish to use. There are two basic choices. You can either use a liner and place rocks to form the fall or you can save yourself the trouble and buy a fibreglass unit. Either way you will still have to use your shovel to form the site of the waterfall.
The other requirement is a pump which will be sited in the pool to transport the water to the top of your waterfall. The size of pump that you will need depends on the height and width of the waterfall and also the length of pipe from the pump to the top of the fall. Once you have finalised your plans, consult your dealer and he will be able to supply you with the correct pump.
To maintain a healthy pond environment with crystal clear water usually involves installing a biological filter. Again your dealer will be able to advise you as to the correct type and size. The filter should be placed at the top of the waterfall so that the water is cleaned before issuing out on to the fall.
Once you have assembled all the equipment it is time to get out your shovel. If your site is level and the soil from excavation of your pond is nearby this can be used as the mound on which to place the waterfall. If you are using a liner you first dig out the channel and then fit the liner. Next place the rocks so that the water can flow over them. It is helpful if you observe a natural waterfall to give you some ideas as to how the rocks can be placed for the greatest effect. Once you are satisfied with the arrangement, use black waterfall foam to seal the rocks to ensure that the water flows over and around them and not underneath. If you have chosen to use a fibreglass preformed model, you will avoid the problem of placing the rocks and will just have to dig out sufficient soil to allow you to fit the unit.
To complete the installation fit the pump, filter and hose and connect to the electricity supply. Providing all is working to your satisfaction, now is the time to relax and enjoy your handiwork.
If you have read this far and are wondering whether it would be just too much like hard work, then consider this. Water soothes and relaxes, inspires reflection, and is a source of beauty. A cascading, bubbling stream adds interest and serenity to the garden, while a waterfall can create a dramatic centerpiece. Building a pond waterfall really is worth the effort.
Hugh Harris-Evans is the owner of The Garden Supplies Advisor where you will find further articles, gardening tips and product reviews.