A backyard pond provides a cool, calming place in a hectic world. Water plants and fish, butterflies and birds are at home in a small or medium sized pond. But a large pond attracts ducks or other waterfowl. Really big ponds attract wildlife like deer, raccoons and even otters. It may seem daunting, but a pond, even a large one, is a very doable project.

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Ponds attract all kinds of wildlife to te backyard.

Digging the pond

Step 1

Call your local utilities and they will mark electrical, plumbing and gas lines.

Step 2

Choose a place to dig the pond. The spot should be away from trees. Falling leaves contaminate the pond. Grading is also an issue. If the pond is too low, rainwater will overfill the pond and wash away plants and fish.

Step 3

Outline the pond with spray paint.

Step 4

Begin digging. Depending on the size of the pond, it may take several days, even with a backhoe. It takes 6 weeks to dig a 5 acre pond.

Step 5

Dig the pond at least 3 ft. deep if fish are planned. Fish need at least 3 ft of water to survive the winter. Clear away any large rocks or pointed roots to protect the pond liner.

Building the Pond

Step 1

Line the newly dug hole with either a layer of sand, or a polymer underlayment.

Step 2

Determine the size of the liner. Multiply the depth by the number 3 and add the sum to the length and the width. If the pond is very large, you may need more than one piece of PVC. Use vinyl adhesive to seal the edges.

Step 3

Spread the liner over the hole. Allow the liner to sag into the hole. Place rocks around the edge to keep the liner from falling completely into the hole.

Step 4

Add water, a little at a time. This stretches the PVC to the bottom of the hole. Pull the edges of the liner gently as the pond fills to prevent wrinkles.

Step 5

Trim any excess liner from the edges when the pond is full. Cover the edges with soil or large rocks to hide the liner from view.