We all know that koi ponds require a lot of maintenance to keep our koi happy and healthy. But one thing we often overlook is the cosmetic appeal of our ponds. Maybe things are beginning to look a bit drab after a few years of wear and tear, or perhaps your favorite home and garden magazine has you feeling inspired. Whatever the reason, sometimes it’s just time for a refresh. From simple spruces to more complex changes, here are a few ways to upgrade and elevate your pond.
Just like we enjoy our space to breathe and spread out from one another in our own homes, so do koi and other creatures in your pond’s ecosystem. If you have a relatively small pond where your fish are bumping into each other and don’t have much room to spread their fins, you may want to consider enlarging your pond as the first step in taking it from good to great. Or, if you want to add more fish but have run out of space, expanding your pond could be the answer to your prayers.
It’s important to note that enlarging an existing pond is not a simple task. It requires quite a bit of construction, and you’ll need to shut down your pond entirely for a period of time. You’ll also need to upgrade your equipment and filtration system based on the new size. However, if you have the time and resources, it’s the perfect way to give your pond a big makeover.
Add Some Green
Adding plants to your pond ecosystem is another great way to give it an upgrade. While pond plants can add aesthetic appeal, they also improve the overall environment of your pond. Plants help provide oxygen to pond water, making it healthier for your fish. The added oxygen also helps limit algae growth. Additionally, plants offer shelter for fish, protecting them from predators and offering shade in the summer months.
Determining the type of plants that are best for your pond depends on your climate and the amount of upkeep you want to do, but there are plenty of options from which to choose.
Get Things Moving
Adding a water feature to your pond can add pond appeal while also improving your water quality. Not only are the look and sound of moving water beautiful and relaxing, but a water feature also helps keep your pond and koi healthy by releasing toxic gasses and adding oxygen to your pond water. The added aeration can reduce algae growth and keep mosquitos at bay.
From simple additions like spitters and fountains to more complex features like waterfalls and streams, there’s a perfect water feature for every pond.
Step Up Your Decor Game
If you’re looking to upgrade the aesthetics of your pond, the right decor can go a long way. Decorations and ornaments are a great way to give your pond a personal touch while adding character and beauty. There are several different types of pond decorations. Statues and floating ornaments are simpler additions. You can upgrade your landscaping with rocks or stones. A footbridge is a more splurge-worthy decor option that allows you to view your pond from new angles.
Some pond decor also serves practical purposes. Deter predators and protect your pond population with a decoy. You can hide unsightly plumbing, tubing, and other supplies with artificial stones. Added illumination, especially motion-sensor lights, can ward away nocturnal predators and give your pond new life after dark. Plus, lights help mark the boundaries of your pond after the sun sets to ensure that you or your guests don’t wander too close to the edge and accidentally fall in. Whatever you choose, don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through your pond decor.
Create a Pond-Side Oasis
Your pond environment doesn’t begin and end in the water. Part of your pond area includes the surrounding space for you to relax and enjoy it. Add a pathway leading to and from your pond. Elevate the surrounding area with a garden.
If you want a more significant upgrade, consider building a pond-side patio or deck. Purchase new outdoor furniture where friends can gather, or add a hammock where you can unwind pondside after a long day. If your area gets a lot of sun, a pergola, gazebo, or canopy is a great way to give yourself (and your koi) some shaded space–especially in the summer months.
Replace Equipment and Supplies
Our pond equipment works hard and, over time, will likely endure some deterioration. A practical way to upgrade your pond is by replacing or updating your equipment and maintenance supplies. Maybe your skimmer isn’t working quite as efficiently as it once did, or your pond has outgrown its filtration system. Replacing these essentials can make a big difference in the health of your pond and fish. With the number of filtration and skimmer options available, it won’t be difficult to find something perfectly suited for you and your pond.
Beyond the necessities, there are plenty of other types of equipment available that can help make pond maintenance a bit easier. If your pond tends to accumulate a lot of debris, a pond vacuum is a worthy investment that will save on cleaning time. Or, purchase a net cover to prevent debris (and predators!) from entering your pond in the first place. An automatic feeder can be a lifesaver if you spend a lot of time away from home. For ponds in colder climates, aerators and deicers are a huge help in preventing your pond from freezing over in the winter months. Or, keep it simple by replacing the little things, like your water test kit, skimmer net, thermometer, or garden gloves.
There’s no single way to upgrade your backyard pond, but making some changes can go a long way to breathing new life into your favorite pastime. Whether you choose a simple improvement, a more extensive redesign, or a combination of the two, a few upgrades will have your pond looking its best and make it the envy of hobbyists everywhere.