pond edging help

wfg97079(zone 6)March 12, 2008

Need some help with my pond edging, looks pretty rough and wife hates it :)

Also need a way to hide my skippy filter in the back.

Dealing with a bit of a slope to the yard has left the edging pretty rough

Pic here:


Any advice?

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Here is your image:

    Bookmark   March 13, 2008 at 5:10AM
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My #1 favorite edging of any pond is plants. Trailing ones are always nice, because they will grow over, around, and through those rocks. Taller plants, which are really needed in such a flat area to give some height, can be placed intermittently, on the outside edge of the rocks, and allowed to grow out over the the rocks and sometimes, over the water.

Plants will really soften up those hard edges. :)


    Bookmark   March 13, 2008 at 10:04AM
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Plants, plants, and more plants. Fountain grass planted beside the skippy will help hide it on the sides and will even drape a little in front of it. I used Purple Fountain Grass to help hide my bio filter last year, and it worked great. Water Hyacinth can be placed directly in the filter.

Creeping plants, like Sweet Allysum, lobelia (annuals), or Blue Star Creeper or creeping phlox (perennials), can be planted between the rocks at the pond's edge, and they will ramble and cascade over them, softening the harsh appearance of the rocks. Taller plants, like spikes, salvia, bachelor buttons, marigolds, Zinnias, almost anything you can think of, look terrific planted beside the pond. A combination of flowers and greens look best.

Inside the pond, you can place taro, umbrella palms, etc. Taro can also be grown in the ground beside the pond, but it has a high moisture requirement.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2008 at 10:19AM
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I use creeping sedum, chameleon, and thyme. They come back quick in the spring and the color contrast looks pretty neat. [IMG]http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h62/lavender-50/100_1297.jpg[/IMG]

    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 12:31AM
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That's a great pond. Should be easy and fun to "dress it up".

If it were mine, I'd plant the background to look like a forest or bushy wild area - tall plants. Then I'd have the height of the plants decrease down the sides of the pond to a viewing area.

First suggestion for your situation is to get some pond books out of the library and give them to your wife and ask her to tag the ponds she likes. That will give you an idea of the direction to go. Incorporating items that she already likes will go a long way to winning her over.

Here are some ideas that I would use if it were me:

Creeping thyme is nice around rocks and Irish or Scottish moss would also add some interesting color (The Scottish is yellower than the Irish)

Placing matching rocks around the skippy filter with water hyacynth or any potted bog plant in it would help disguise it.

A bench with appropriate setting to watch the pond is called for also!!

Since you are in Zone 9, there are lots of great sub-tropical type plants that would give height in the background: ginger, banana, canna lily, bamboo (with roots contained or it is big-time invasive).

Good luck. Please show after pictures so we can see what you have done.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 1:58PM
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There have been a number of posts on this subject you might try to look up. The general consensus is that a mixture of approachs works best, as suggested in the previous posts.

The one ingredient missing here is sod. The least expensive thing around your pond, you can cover rocks, drape it over rocks and let it grow to the water, plant wild flowers or let it grow wild as in nature (trim very little). How you mix it with plants is your creative endeavor. I may post a pic later.

Good luck--you have a nice pond to dress up.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 2:39PM
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Here are a couple of pictures of my first pond, like yours I wasn't pleased with the edges of mine either. However when you get some plants going in and around the pond it will shape up. My pond was on the downhill slope of the yard and had a lot of runoff when it rained. I re-built it and it is now 2 1/2 ft higher than the yard. So I don't have that problelm any longer. I planted some cannas and put white granite rock around it as you can see somewhat in one of the pictures and thought It added to it. And we did add sod. Glenda

    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 7:52PM
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I feel we turned a heavy rock feature, all hard and angular and flat planes into something a bit more subdued. We were seeking a more "natural" look. One photo shows the pond minutes after the first water ran down the falls. The other shows the sod in the foreground that, to me, softened the effort and it covered a ring of stones similar to yours that made it all too rocky.

Personal taste, personal opinion but just to show that a mixture of materials is better than just one or two types of plants, as all agree.

Do you want a formal look, natural look, plants in and/or out of pond. As suggested, get lots of books and search on line - there are loads of pond pics to inspire.

You have a very nice canvas on which to paint your visions.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2008 at 8:33PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

This pond of mine has the edge softened by creeping perennial plants. Part of it wasn't planted yet in the photo but you can see how much softer the edge is on the bottom of the photo where it was planted first.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 15, 2008 at 1:23PM
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kashka_kat(z4 WI)

Since your rocks are flat, straighten them up so they are all horizontal - you've got them going every which way like they were just dumped there. If they were rounded rocks, the dumped look is OK but since they are flat its more natural looking if they are all level because in nature that's how rock would crack apart, all along the same plane.... hope you get what I'm trying to say here!!! I know what I'm trying to say but not sure it's coming across.

It is & will be a great looking pond, you're almost done!

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 1:29PM
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On two ponds which I built, I ran bender-board around the periphery (several inches from the wall of the pond), laid the liner over the bender-board and then clamped it to the bender-board using a chain of wire hangers linked together (use care not to puncture the liner). I then covered this with a mound of mortar approximately an inch thick on the sides and top. Finally, I backfilled with soil on the side away from the water to within two inches of the top of the mound and planted a ground-cover which eventually grew over the top of the mound and down to the water, providing a very natural look. The wire hangers acted as re-bar and gave the whole structure enough strength that I never had any cracking or splitting.

It sounds kinda weird but this worked extremely well for many years on my first two ponds. It looks like you've already made a commitment to a rock border but if you're open to a different approach, this might work for you.


    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 3:40PM
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wfg97079(zone 6)

Thanks everyone, anyone know a good place to buy some of these wonderfull plants? Im in northeast mass/souther NH
or I can buy online if any are decent

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 10:35AM
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Believe it or not, Home Depot or Lowes sells most of the plants listed on this thread - purple fountain grass, creeping thyme, Irish & Scotch moss, etc. Any other terrestrial plants not found at either of those places can usually be found at locally-owned nurseries.


    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 8:19AM
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