Earlier in the spring, our garden pond was drained for a major cleaning. Check out this link to see the pictures from the Koi Pond Cleanup.
During the planning phase of the pond cleanup, we faced a dilemma about what to do with all of the fish. To give us more time to accomplish the cleaning and adjust the water quality, we decided to establish a new 6 foot round stock tank as a holding facility for the fish.
When the cleanup was complete, we faced another dilemma; what should we do with the stock tank now? Having an extra holding tank for the fish has many benefits, so we decided we should keep the tank running.
The tank is tucked in a shady spot up against our fence line. Can you see it?
You have to come in a little closer and look directly down the path. It's hidden just enough that it is a nice surprise when you come around the corner.
The large stepping stones were purchased for another project, but were never used. Set into a little decomposed granite, the flagstones fit perfectly into this spot.
Some of the terra cotta wall blocks were leftovers, but when we went to purchase more to finish the job, we found that they were making the new blocks slightly smaller. Kinda like those 1 gallon ice cream containers that aren't quite a gallon anymore. Grrrr.
When I saw this bell shaped pot at a local nursery, I thought it would add just the right touch to our tank. The bubbler fountain head adds oxygen to the water in addition to adding a splashy sound.
Life in the stock tank has adjusted quickly. This Panama Pacific water lily doesn't mind a little shade, so I decided to keep it in the stock tank.
Parrots feather is at home in sun or shade lending it's lacing foliage to either setting.
Some of the plantings in this area came from various cuttings that I made last fall. This angel wing begonia is one of the easiest plants to propagate. I usually grow them in pots, but in mild winters they will come back from the ground. I'll take insurance cuttings again in the fall, since you never know what winter has in store.
Coleus is another easy plant to propagate. This plant will not survive our winters here in Zone 8, so I always take cuttings of the ones I want to save.
My original variegated purple heart is not doing so good (thanks to the bunnies), but this cutting taken last fall is really growing well.
Nature blessed me with some mature plants that make this area look well established. One of the native plants in this new space is the American beautyberry. The flowers of the beautyberry are not very flashy, but that's okay. The real show will come later in the fall when the plants will be loaded with lovely purple berries.
So, you might be wondering how the pond is doing after the big cleanup. Today it's looking pretty good, but it does take some time for the pond biology to equalize. We've had algae blooms and cloudy water most of the spring. My husband has been diligently cleaning the filters and waiting for things to find a balance. Looks like we're almost there.