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Photo Diary-setting Up Patio Pond For Fancies


jsrtist

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Now that it's warming up I have decided to set up my patio pond at our new house.

This is a 40 gallon stock tub which we drilled with an intake and outlet and hooked to our XP2 canister filter. It is a pond for fancies so it stays heated to about 70? all the time. I use a submersible 300w Ebo Jager heater. The pond will have netting over it also to make sure the fish are safe from any critters that may come into the yard at night.

I chose a spot against the house which receives morning and early afternoon sun but is shaded at the hottest time of the day.

Here is what the spot looked like at first:

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I had to relocate my potato plant and move around some of the brick pavers. I made a solid support for the bottom of the pond with the pavers.

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We had to clear away some of the weeds and brush to make it safe for electricity:

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Filling the pond (I love that Python--had it for about 6 years now!):

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Setting up the canister. I took a used sponge from my 100 gallon tank to seed the filter and avoid having to cycle the pond.

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The canister is all set up now. I raised it on some bricks to keep it dry. I plan to put a protective covering over it also to protect from rain and moisture.

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Shaded at the hottest time of the day, and decorated with all my critters and plants!

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A shot from the back porch this morning. It's nice and shady still.

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I will add more soon as I complete it. We plan to put a protective covering on which I can lift up easily but still can lock. I won't add fish until I'm sure the temperature is stable, since these guys have lived indoors in a constant temperature all winter.

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Wow! Doesn't that look nice! :goodjob

Do you set it up every year? You said this was your new house, but I wondered if you had been doing the stock tank. :)

It all looks so confusing, no matter how many pictures I see of setting up a pond. :blink:

You have a very nice set up there! I look forward to more pictures as you go along! :exactly

Thank you for sharing!!

Debbie

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Nice pictures, and the end product looks great! I bet the fish do well out in some sunshine.

Thanks for putting in these step by step photos. The more I read here, the more inspired I get to put in a pond. I'm glad you mentioned shade too, since it is probably something I should think about here with Houston summers!

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Thanks for the replies! It is so fun--definitely something worth trying! Our biggest problem here is just keeping it cool in the summer since it just gets so hot, and doesn't cool off at night.

I have had the pond for about a year but this is the first time I've set it back up after taking it down for winter. Since it was heated I technically could have left it all year but it made me nervous that the power might go out overnight and my fish would freeze.

I picked up this stock pond at a garden center for about $50. They had even larger ones but at the time I had a tiny apartment porch. (If you look back you'll see pics of that from last year).

Temp seems to be stabilizing so now all I need is a cover. I may try to pick up some more floating plants for shade, too.

Hopefully this will inspire others to set up a pond, too! It is not too difficult or expensive. I've also used Rubbermaid tubs and just regular power filters. You could even set this up with the canister without drilling it, but we did that just to hide the tubing.

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Last night JD came up with a great way to attach the netting over the top. He drilled 6 screws all around the edge of the pond. He chose ones with large heads that the netting can just hook over. Now it is held on very tightly but I can easily unhook it to get into the pond when I need to.

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And a view of the whole pond. I used bird netting (used to protect fruit trees) and folded it in half. You can hardly see it, which I like.

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Okay, another update! This time, with fish!

First a safety note. We installed this plastic cover over the GFCI outlet to prevent rain and moisture. We had been putting it off and guess what, it rained last night! Luckily everything was OK but this is a good lesson in preventing fire and damage! We found the cover at a local hardware store.

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I added Speck (the fish that lived in here last summer) and my red and white ryukin who I bought over the winter. They seem to be enjoying their new home!

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And with the bird netting. It is noticeable but also necessary.

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Some late afternoon shade.

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Eventually I think I'll cycle everyone through the pond for awhile, just to brighten their colors and let them enjoy the outdoors for awhile.

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  • 2 weeks later...
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It doesn't get too much. I made sure to choose a spot where it's shaded all afternoon. There's a big plant next to it that I'm letting get bigger so it will provide even more shade.

Now that the pond has been up for awhile I thought I'd give an update. The water is getting a slight tint of green. I'm wondering if I'm headed for pea soup water! Every water change seems to clear it up. I put my little ranchu Otter out there this week too. He is a calico but is very, very faded. After a week he already looks much brighter!

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Guest Paradise-Panda

Very beautiful indeed, I especially like the driftwood you added :D . Another good Idea for anyone setting up a minipond that likes the look of lilly's and such is to purchase banana plants or dwarf tiger lotus (commenly sold at chain stores under the name "mystery bulbs"). they stay small and form attractive leaves just like the larger pond lillys.

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Your fish certainly look happy! From what I understand, exposure to sunlight is an excellent way to get green water... so you're probably stuck with it.

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One of my friends uses the Clarifier Excel off of goldfishconnection and says it works amazing. Not sure if this is something you want to invest in or be able to find a spot to use it outside with electricity outlets and such.

He says it cleared up his 125 in just a couple days.

I love it so far :D

Keep us updated :)

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So far the water isn't too green--though it IS very warm--calculated it to be in the upper 80s yesterday! There is plenty of surface movement though and they seemed fine. But I may have to move it if it gets much warmer than that.

An interesting note. Speck is the small calico fantail I have out there. I always thought the sunlight enhanced the colors and really brought out the black in calicoes. It certainly is doing that with my very faded calico ranchu, Otter. But Speck has lost almost ALL his black!! Isn't that odd?

I am keeping an eye on him and seeing if it changes with the warmer temperatures. It may be a stress response to the warm water.

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What a lovely project - keep us updated with how you get on! :thumbs: You said things heat up and stay like that overnight - what are the average overnight temps in California in the summer? Sounds way too hot for little 'ole me! :D

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You're right, they are way too hot!! Here in Fresno it can get over a hundred regularly during the day, and on really still nights it can stay in the upper 90s overnight. Those days are just miserable, when you can't sleep and you are stuck to your sheets!

My 100 gallon (indoors) regularly heats up to the upper 80s during the summer and there's nothing I can do about it, even with air conditioning. They can tolerate those temps as long as the water is well aerated. Of course it does evaporate very quickly.

I don't plan to stay here forever though. I like the heat but hate how cold the winters get here--miserable, windy, freezing cold rain. I will eventually head for the California coast where it stays between 70-80 all year round. Just think, I could have ponds outdoors all year! :)

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As I swelter here in Houston today in 90+ degree weather with 90%+ humidity, you make me nostalgic for my youth out in California.

Those cool breezes at the beach in Santa Cruz in July, huddling under a blanket wrapped up in our parkas! :rofl

I really like your pond, by the way. Hope all your fish will enjoy being rotated through it this summer.

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That is a beautiful pond, Jen! :thumbs: What work that was putting it all together - but its always well worth it. The fish look so happy out there, and maybe the black will come back on your fish.

If you are looking for a great plant you can stick in a pond, get a papyrus plant, or also known as umbrella plant. They are amazing, look great and grow like weed. You can get easily numberous plants out of one single plant. They just love the nitrates in the pond as fertilizer - that is what makes them grow like weeds. I bought a dwarf papyrus years ago, and got 6 or 7 solid huge plants out of that single one. And forget about "dwarf" - those things were 6 ft tall easily.

Other house plants you can use as pond plants are spider plants, peace lilies and taro plants. I always like to experiment with plants, just like you, and its cool when you find something you can use "outside the box".

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  • 2 weeks later...
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Cool, trip to the nursery!!! I get in trouble going there, though.

How do you plant those in the pond? Do you put them in large baskets with rocks and soil? Do you put them at the bottom? We have a papyrus plant in the pond at my mom's house that's been there for about 13 years now and it's gotten huge. I love the look of them!

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Wish I had a shady place I could put a pond. But I just know on those days it get to 120 all my fish would just kill over. Nice set up.

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