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How To Build a Level Pond and Edging

Following these basic tips will assist you in ensuring your pond is installed level. This avoids exposed pond lining, protecting it from sunlight damage, as well as making your pond look more attractive.

Pre-Formed Ponds

After excavation, cover the base of the hole with about 5cm of sand and level out, position the pond on the sand and place a spirit level across the top lips of the pond, reposition and add sand as necessary to achieve a level pond. Gradually fill the pond while back filling the sides. Do check manufacturer's instructions for specific installation information.

Liner Pools

Once your pond is excavated you need to consider the edging method you're going to use.

For a basic or wildlife pool edge, simply knock a stake into the centre of the excavation (The stake will need to be at least 15cm deeper than the pool, so when it's knocked into the soil it won't move). Drive the stake in until the top is at the desired finished pool level.

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Now simply position a length of straight timber across from the stake to the side. Position a spirit level on the straight timber. Then work your way around the pond removing or building up the edge, creating a perfect level all the way around.

Should you wish to build a more complex edging, you will need to lay footings. These must be laid level and at least 10-15cm deep.

To achieve this, firstly position a central stake as above, but this time the top should be at the finished level of the footing. Now take your straight (bridging) timber from the central stake to where the footing is going to be laid on the side. Take a peg approx. 30cm long and partially knock it into the soil. Then place the bridging timber across and check the level and if required continue to knock the peg in further until the bridging timber is level. Carry this on around the pool placing pegs every 50-100cm apart.

Once completed ensure all the pegs are at least 10-15cm proud of the soil, if necessary remove some more soil around the pegs. Once these pegs are all in position, simply lay the footings to the top of the peg and this will leave you a perfect level footing all round your pool.

Note: With all ponds, you must not place heavy edging materials around the pond for at least a week, to allow the pond to settle.

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Pond Edging

HOWEVER much planning goes into creating a pond, poor edging can spoil the finished effect and look unsightly, as well as possibly leaving liners exposed to direct sunlight. This can cause the liner to perish, hence shortening its life expectancy and allowing it to become more vulnerable to accidental damage.

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PLEASE NOTE: The above examples with flexible liners do not show an underlay although use of one is highly recommended. 

Pond Edging Tips

Decide on edging method before starting excavation.
Footings are essential for most edging, use ample concrete and a strong 3/1 sand cement mix.
Where the liner may come in contact with the footings or walling sandwich the liner with underlay for protection.
Any cement work which will come into contact with water, should be treated to neutralise the lime. (Please ask in store for advice)
Hide ducting for all cables and pipes into the edging, a couple of spare ducts could be also very useful in the future.
Any cement work, which falls into the pool during construction, must be removed.
Always do a complete water change a few days after any cement work on a new pond before introducing any plant or fish life.