By definition, an ecosystem is a biological community of interacting organisms and their physical environment. In an ecosystem pond, our goal is to set up the pond environment (the physical environment) so that the biological community of interacting organisms thrive. In turn, this will create a low maintenance piece of paradise for you, the pond owner.
Just Add Water is a Master Certified Aquascape Contractor. We have installed over 300 water features and repaired or serviced hundreds more. As you can imagine, over the years we have seen ponds built a number of different ways. Based on our experience, we have found that the most beautiful, low maintenance ponds are designed and installed with the ecosystem approach in mind and share the following characteristics.
- Biological Filtration: The biological filter is what keeps the pond water clear. It’s the home to beneficial bacterias that break down waste product, turning it into usable material for the pond ecosystem. A BioFalls Filter or plant and gravel wetland filter are two great examples of biological filtration.
- Mechanical Filtration: Foreign debris such as leave should be removed from an ecosystem pond before they can drop to the bottom. A pond skimmer, intake bay, or a vanishing edge skimmer are the best mechanical skimmers.
- Aquatic Plants: Aquatic plants feed on nutrients in the pond and help to control unsightly algae (another aquatic plant). They also help naturalize a pond and provide habitat for animals that are important for the pond ecosystem.
- Fish: The most popular pond fish is the beautiful koi. Koi fulfill their role in the ecosystem by helping to control algae growth. They eat it.
- Rocks and Gravel: Rock and Gravel are used to cover the rubber pond liner. This protects the liner from harmful sun rays as well creates a more natural looking pond. The surface area of the rock and gravel also provide habitat for the beneficial bacterias and other smaller pond organisms.
We sometimes compare ourselves to a chef preparing a meal. If we leave out one ingredient, our meal will not turn out as we hope. The same is true in a pond.