Reading a link-up post on another blog ( http://www.acornstem.co.uk ), I discovered there was an easy way to add pond life to our garden. We could make a mini pond. My trio love pond dipping, and AcornSTEM’s post was fantastic with its step by step guide. It was a real incentive to try and do this myself. I researched it a little more first, and came across the RSPB’s own guide “Create a Mini-Pond” https://ww2.rspb.org.uk/get-involved/activities/give-nature-a-home-in-your-garden/garden-activities/createaminipond/ . It reassured me that it was a good time of year (spring) to make one, as we’d see it develop quite fast in the next few months. It can be made at other times of the year too, but it would mature more slowly. So, I got my thinking cap on for a tub that could be our pond, and planned to do it the next day with the trio.
I found an old bucket with a broken handle that we didn’t use for anything, and thought that would be perfect for our mini pond. We then needed to choose a location. There were a couple of factors that needed to be considered with this. First of all it doesn’t want to be in a place where the sun will shine on it all day long, so sometimes sunny, sometimes shady is good. Secondly, it needs some vegetation around it. So if there is none when you plant it, be prepared to pop some in afterwards. The vegetation will provide cover and perches for wildlife. Our mini pond area has some old tree stumps around it, and is in a newly made flower bed. So, although it is a work in progress, there are imminent plans to grow things there once our weather in Sweden warms up a little (you can see our spring bulbs just peeping through). Thirdly, it needs to be in a safe place, as even a small body of water can be a hazard for small children (she says with a massive old well in her garden!). I have placed ours somewhere where the trio aren’t supposed to walk (a flower bed) with perches in the form of the tree stumps to provide a more mental barrier to it as well. We dug our hole, and stuck our bucket in. We left it sticking out a few centimetres so any mini beasts that are land dwellers, shouldn’t accidentally bimble into it.
We have a lot of rocks in our garden, so I sent the trio off to find 3 or 4 large ones to place in the bottom of the pond. This will give any mini beasts some hiding places and cover if they require it. Next in was a large stick/branch reaching up from the rocks, out onto the tree stumps. This is an emergency exit for any land dwellers that do accidentally stumble into it, so they can climb back out again.
It then needed filling up. You can do this with tap water, but it will take longer to be colonised due to the treatment it undergoes. Luckily we have a water butt full of water. I also want to shift the said unsightly water butt from its current location, but am unable to due to the fact it keeps filling up with water, and I haven’t got round to scooping it out yet! Today we made a start on scooping the water out, and carrying it over to our mini pond. Do not be tempted to fill it with pond water from another pond, as you are making those mini beasts move house!!
After that was all done, we decorated around it with some more of our surplus rocks, and now will just sit back and wait to see if it starts teeming with life! Hopefully, in a few weeks I will have a positive update for you!
************************please be aware that even small bodies of water provide a hazard to young children, so do not leave them unattended with the mini pond*****************************************************