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My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Wed May 07, 2008 9:28 pm
by mf_dolphin
Some of you may remember my pond pictures from a couple of years ago.

Well needless to say, my wife now thinks I need professional help :-) Between the two connected ponds we're up to some where around 5,500 gallons. I always liked aquariums, this one is just a bit larger... Here are some pictures from the "latest" version.



The larger fish in the picture are a little over 2 feet long. :-)








Now I'm working on the plans for the next expansion.... don't tell the wife :-)

Posted: Wed May 07, 2008 10:31 pm
by CajunMama
Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiice! When's the first annual s2k party? :lol:

Posted: Thu May 08, 2008 10:48 am
by mf_dolphin
Anytime! We'll have a "bring your own shovel" party :-)

Posted: Thu May 08, 2008 12:39 pm
by Pburgh
Absolutely beautiful. What a great job you've done.

Is that a little gardenia tree I see? I can almost smell it from here.

Your Koi are amazing. How old are they?

Ok, I'm moving to Florida. I can see the expansion now. Have you started building the bridge?

Posted: Thu May 08, 2008 1:43 pm
by Miss Mary
Very impressive Marshall! Tell your wife, there are far worse things in life to become obsessed with!

Your garden, pond, etc. is just beautiful. If I had pull at gardening magazines, I would highly suggest they come, take pics and feature your home in an upcoming issue.

Posted: Thu May 08, 2008 7:56 pm
by mf_dolphin
Thanks for the kind words! It's really become a passion which has absolutely shocked Vicki since I've never enjoyed yard work at all. My domain now is anything inside the planter/pond area. I've even started putting sod down in the rest of the yard to bring the yard upscale a bit.

Yes to the gardenia tree. There's actually 2 of them and they smell so good now that they are on bloom. We've really put in a wide variety of plants around the pond including:

Pintas, amaryllis, day lillies, lantana, mandeville, white and orange bird-of-paradise, 4-5 variaties of gingers, pineapple, hibiscus, society garlic, desert rose, lilly of the nile, elephant ear and my favorites canna's. Inside the pond we have a lotus, day and night blooming water lillies, taro, cat tails, and papyrus.

The larger koi we've had for 3 years. Most of them started in the 6-8 in size when we bought them. Unfortunately, last Christmas we got a parasite in the pond called "fish lice" and lost 10 of our fish.

Shhh about the bridge ;-) I really want to add one more pond with a stream and bridge. That may cost me an expensive trip to Jared's :-)

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 6:29 am
by Miss Mary
My husband doesn't enjoy yardwork at all either Marshall!

Hey, maybe there's hope for him afterall......LOL

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 8:02 am
by Pburgh
I like the way you have placed the waterfalls so that you can see it from the street. Your canna are beautiful and I love the mandeville. I'm always so envious of you guys down South. All of those wonderful plants are perennials for you and we have to fork out lots of $$$$ yearly to have them in our gardens. I just planted my elephant ear bulbs the other day.

Marshall, if you can find a black taro, that would look great in there. Just a change of color that really stands out. Your papyrus looks really healthy.

Gardening and cooking are my favorite hobbies and both can be really expensive but nothing is more rewarding. Yep, I can see myself sitting on that wonderful bench with a glass of wine in hand and watching the koi.

(Is the bridge going to be red???) lol

Re: My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 8:41 am
by weathermom
ummm.....why does there appear to be a hippo in your pond?????

It is all very beautiful. I have been wanting to put a cascade into a pond in our yard for some time. Our front yard has the perfect slope for it, and then we wouldn't have to mow the front anymore. Half of the front yard is already garden.....

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 12:43 pm
by mf_dolphin
The hippo was my daughters contribution to the pond. We have an assortment of little cast plastic and ceramic critters from frogs, lizzards to turtles scattered around the pond. We did have a couple of real turtles but they either ran away from home or because someone's dinner.

Weathermom, as a warning.... ponds are addictive. :-) The place where I buy just about everything from rock to fish to plants calls me their personal retirement account. :-) To us though it's been worth every dime. The enjoyment we get just sitting around the pond in the morning before work and again in the evening makes all the effort insignificant. It's really become like a living part of the family.

The one thing I haven't added to the mix yet is a waterwheel. I've downloaded the plans but I have to figure out where it's going to go. :-) Just somehow the pond is never quite finished ;-)

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 12:53 pm
by southerngale
Wow, Marshall. That's beautiful. I'm impressed! I noticed the hippo too, and enlarged the picture to check it out.

Simply stunning.... I wish I had that kind of talent. I do good to plant shrubs. Image

Re: My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Fri May 09, 2008 3:13 pm
by dizzyfish
WOW!!! Really nice work there. How much do you charge? :wink:

I would love to have something like that here. We certainly have the room and I even entertained the idea when we moved up here. We have so many critters and birds that I know we wouldn't be able to have the fish. Guess I'll just stick with looking at the "lake" (bird sanctuary) out back. *sigh*

I really am jealous though. :ggreen:

I'm in for the "bring your own shovel" party! Can I be in charge of the iced tea? LOL

Re: My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Sat May 10, 2008 7:48 am
by mf_dolphin
The trick with the critters and birds is to have a deep enough pond so the fish can escape to the deep portion. In our main pond the deep end is 36"" and we haven't lost a single fish. We have herons, opossum and racoons as well in the area.

The hard part of putting in a pond is the digging. If you know someone with a little backhoe that can be done in minutes. My daughter and I dug out the first pond by hand. Never again! After the hole is dug then you have the underliner, rubber liner and rocks. There's something basically wrong with digging a hole and then carrying rocks back into it but that's what we did. There's somewhere around 15,000 lbs of river rock/flag stone and another 40-50 bags of pea pebbles inside the ponds.

Re: My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Thu May 29, 2008 3:45 pm
by weathermom
I live on a river and was concerned about the heron. I am glad to hear that if we make the pond deep enough they won't be able to get the fish. That will also help them survive the winter won't it? Now... do you know anything about black bears? Will they fish in a pond? I don't really want to encourage them to come into the yard any more than they already do........

Posted: Thu May 29, 2008 7:39 pm
by mf_dolphin
I don't have to deal with bears here in my part of Florida so that's a new one for me. :-) The winter issue though is pretty simple, Koi survive quite well in cold weather. Once the water temp gets below about 50 degrees they basically quit eating and shutdown for the winter. You do have to make sure that the pond doesn't completely freeze over so there's some place for gases to escape and oxygen to replenish. Usually in cold climates the most that would require is that you buy a floating electric heater to keep a hole open. Hope that helps :-)

Re: My obsession.. the pond revisited

Posted: Tue Jun 17, 2008 2:38 pm
by decgirl66
SWEET! I like that!

Posted: Sat May 16, 2009 7:58 pm
by brunota2003
I cant see the pictures on here, and I get an error on the link too?

Posted: Sat May 16, 2009 10:54 pm
by SaskatchewanScreamer
Ponds are my obsession as well and I would love to see yours but all I see is the word image (x10) and the link comes up as an error for me too. :cry:

Posted: Thu May 21, 2009 4:27 pm
by mf_dolphin
My fault on the pictures. I've been doing some server clean-up and must have deleted them. :oops: I should be able to repost them (or some new ones) this week-end

Posted: Fri Jun 26, 2009 10:51 pm
by SaskatchewanScreamer
Your ponds are gorgeous mf_dolphin and the tropical plants do a stunning job of framing it! My ponds have many waterlilies (I did note you have Koi however and they do like to munch on those lilies) but very few tropicals (what I'd give to have a sun room that would allow overwintering tropicals). Your natural greenhouse State is a plant lovers dream.

Are you low enough down to grow a White BOP (without having to take it in......I know some areas of Florida get a regular freeze)?

Do you have updated pictures? I'm guessing your bananas, and all your other plants, are much taller now. :wink: I have a friend in Panama City that, in good rain years, has Alocasia (Giant Elephant Ears) that grow taller than her house.

Do you have any vines in your yard? I know many Floridians don't like to grow vines (very, very invasive there) but Thunbergia mysorensis , the Blue Jade Vine, as well as the Poison Dart Vine, would be my choice if'n I lived in Tropical Plant Paradise (I do have one mysorensis that a fellow in Wichita, Kansas is holding for me until I can get down there but in a pot here it sure won't put on the show it would in your locale).