Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Introducing the Water Element; Nick Alderson Gives Some Great Guidelines on How to Design a A[euro][approximately]natural' Pond

Newspaper article The Northern Star (Lismore, Australia)

Introducing the Water Element; Nick Alderson Gives Some Great Guidelines on How to Design a A[euro][approximately]natural' Pond

Article excerpt

JUST AS with the creative use of rocks in the landscape, the planning and construction of a natural pond requires care and attention to detail.

Remember, it is a misconception that just because an element is intended to convey a natural effect, it may be constructed in a random way.

In fact, the opposite is true, whereby the mirroring of nature calls for anything but a casual approach, and in the case of water, this is especially so.

It is just because water is such a special element that its use as a landscape material demands the greatest consideration and scrutiny. The most common reason for the aesthetic failure of a water feature is that it has been included simply for its own sake and consequently there is a tendency for it to appear as an arbitrary element within its setting. In the case of a natural pool or pond, its inclusion must be based on a well-developed illusion that it was always there.

Having emphasised that, care is required in order to create an authentic effect, the following guidelines may be of help in your approach to designing a natural pond.

Shape

Natural pools should be non-geometric and free form in shape. In most cases the actual shape of a natural pond is most sympathetically formed by its waterline rather than a distinctive ahard edgea.

Materials

The use of rocks with gravels and aquatic plants are essential for helping to establish an authentic effect.

Construction style

Generally the pond should be constructed with the minimum visual evidence of the construction itself. The pool sides should be gently sloping with an indistinct edge, and a very afulla waterline.

Siting

The lack of thorough thought given to the siting of a water feature is probably the most common mistake made. The correct and sympathetic siting of the pond is essential. Firstly the ideal site is a low or preferably the lowest part of the landscape (that is, that point where water would naturally collect).

Generally though (particularly in a small garden space) the pond should be non-central, as this tends to disrupt the afreea space around the water feature and divide the garden. …

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