GBDW – Water in the Garden Wrap-Up

– Posted in: Garden Design

Our Design Workshop contributors have certainly come through for us this month, sharing an abundance of inspiring design ideas and a wealth of solid how-to information as well. We have posts on natural and lined ponds, waterfalls, container water features, bog gardens, and rain gardens too.

It’s obvious that water features can be quite addictive, based on the number of you who have more than one feature, and on the passion you have for maintaining them properly despite some daunting challenges. You’ve certainly convinced me that having a water feature adds an extra dimension of joy and beauty to the garden, and that it’s worth trying even a tiny container with a few water plants as a starting point. I confess, though, that the features that really speak to me are the larger in-ground ponds that some of you have created, and I’m not yet convinced that I have the resources or dedication to develop one of my own quite yet. Still, with all of these great ideas to think about, I may just (dare I say it?) take the plunge and start digging one of these days!

Before I get carried away with water-related puns, I’l present the list of the water-related posts I know about, in no particular order. If I missed your existing post, or if you decide to do one later, please leave a link below.

Garden Bloggers’ Design Workshop – Water in the Garden (Nan at Gardening Gone Wild): Kick-off post for this month’s topic.

I Used a Sledgehammer on My Water Feature (ESP at East Side Patch): Regular readers of East Side Patch know that there’s never a dull moment there, and the water feature has certainly contributed its share of excitement. Start with the post linked first, then move on to Fish & Chips (some recent water-garden problems) and Primordial Soup (the solution).

Pond Posts (Ewa at Ewa in the Garden): This series of posts highlights some of the successes and maintenance challenges of the pond in Ewa’s garden in Poland.

Pond Redux (James at View from Federal Twist): There’s a lot of sweat equity in James’ hand-dug, liner-less pond, but the natural-looking beauty that has resulted just a few months later is clearly worth all of the effort.

Water in the Garden (Balcony Gardener): BG proves that you don’t need a big space to enjoy a wide variety of water-garden plants. While you’re there, also check out the series of photos and water-plant portraits starting here.

Water in the Garden (Andrew at The Scott Arboretum’s Garden Seeds): Andrew shares some of his favorite water features, including one in the Terry Shane Teaching Garden on the Swarthmore College campus; one in Millenium Park (the video is a must-see); and one in his personal garden.

GBDW The Many Incarnations of the Pond (Frances at Faire Garden): Follow the evolution of the water features at Faire Garden over the last eight years to see a variety of shapes and construction methods.

Water Features for Birds (David at Gardener’s Journal): David shares a step-by-step slide show of installing a small water feature with a recirculating pump.

My Wildlife Pond (Patient Gardener at The Patient Gardener’s Weblog): Read about the challenges and successes PG has experienced while creating and maintaining a wildlife pond in the UK.

Water Gardens from Puddles to Pools (Craig at Ellis Hollow): Not one to do things by halves, Craig has included a wide variety of water features in his garden, from small containers to an in-ground pond. He also wrote about a water feature on the Cornell campus in The Healing Powers of Water.

Water Fountains in the Landscape (Michelle at Garden Porn): Michelle’s amazing installations explore the many moods that water can add to the garden.

Why It’s Called a Raingarden (Doctor Mom at The Back Quarter Acre): This series of posts chronicles the plans for and progress of the rain garden at The Back Quarter Acre.

Bog Garden (Lois at Lois deVries’ Garden Views): With some help from Lois, a soggy spot turned into a beautiful bog garden.

Morning Coffee in the Garden (Cameron at Defining Your Home Garden): Join Cameron for a delightful stroll to admire the garden stream and waterfall. While you are there, check out the series of posts on the rain garden for some excellent water management ideas.

Nancy J. Ondra
Nan gardens on 4 acres in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. In the firm belief that every garden ought to have a pretentious-sounding (or at least pretentious-looking) name, she refers to her home grounds as "Hayefield." There, she experiments with a wide variety of plants and planting styles, from cottage gardens and color-based borders to managed meadows, naturalistic plantings, and veggies--all under the watchful eyes of her two pet alpacas, Daniel and Duncan.
Nancy J. Ondra

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6 comments… add one

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deb September 30, 2008, 3:56 pm

I wish I had know y’all were doing this. I have been working on my little water garden all summer and would have loved to follow along. I saw Frances’ pond post and borrowed her fish net float idea.

It’s not too late to join in, Deb! Give us links to any posts you’ve already done about your water garden, if you wish, or write a new post and let us know.

Shirl September 30, 2008, 4:58 pm

Hi again Nan, I am busy working on my contribution but had some technical difficulties! All will be revealed in a couple of hours…

Where do you want the link here or on your original posting?

You can leave the link here, Shirl. Good luck, and many thanks!

Frances September 30, 2008, 6:29 pm

Hi Nan, this was a good topic and fun to read about everyone’s ponds and water features. I still think you need at least a small one, designed in a way that it can be enlarged if you want to later on. ;->

Well, I have all winter to think about it, so I wouldn’t be surprised if I have one by next spring. One thing I’ve learned from reading all of the posts is that water gardens are a lot like greenhouses: No matter how big a one you start with, it’s never as big as you’d really like it to be!

deb September 30, 2008, 8:33 pm

Here is a link to my last bog garden post

and here is the last water garden post

Super, Deb – thanks!

Shirl October 1, 2008, 6:25 am

Hi Nan, sorry I’m late with this. Here is the link to my post . I have also back linked to four posts within it.

Patiently, I waited well after midnight last night for an upload I was waiting on but it didn’t get completed in time. Mm… I hope I am too late to convince you 😀

No problem, Shirl – it was worth waiting for. Thanks so much!

Benjamin October 7, 2008, 4:25 pm

Well, we’ll see if I can cheat. This first post has a shot of the rain chain I recently installed, and the stream bed I put in over the summer to carry away the water from the former gutter, now rain chain:

This one from May describes (no pictures because I forgot to take them while struggling with my task) installing a disappearing fountain:

Yikes, Benjamin; somehow this comment sneaked in without my seeing it. Sorry it took me so long to respond. Thanks so much for sharing the links! I remember the saga of the disappearing fountain, but I’ll have to check out the rain-chain story.

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