Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Two Challenges/Two Water Features


It has been awhile since I have showcased any gardens with water features, and so I thought I would make up for it today. Each of the two gardens, I am about to show you, faced a number of hurdles when it came to designing a water feature. 

In the first garden, size was an issue: the backyard was a shallow, long, rectangular piece of property with not much room for a pond. 

The delicately balanced ecosystem of a healthy pond requires full sun or part shade at the very least. Mature trees however, cast most of this particular backyard into shade. 


In answer the challenge of insufficient sunlight, the pond was placed off centre and close to the back fence where there was a small pocket of sunshine. 

Water flows from a reservoir next to the fence and spills from a small waterfall into a shallow pond. To the right there is an area of lawn and to the left there is a patio area of flagstones and fine gravel.





Plantings around the pond include a pale mauve Clematis, a variety of grasses, daylilies, Bigroot Geranium, 'Geranium macrorrhizum', a Japanese Maple and a Corkscrew Hazel.

Next to the house a Penstemon, 'Husker Red' glows in the afternoon sunshine. 

Penstemon 'Husker Red': Full Sun. Height 75-90 cm, Spread: 30-45 cm. Normal, sandy or clay soils are all suitable. Average to moist growing conditions. Flowers are attractive to butterflies. USDA Zones: 3-9


Bigroot Cranesbill Geranium, Geranium macrorrhizum: Full sun, part shade or even full shade. Height 25- 30 cm, Spread: 45-60 cm. Normal, sandy or clay soils are all suitable. This is a pretty adaptable geranium: average, dry or moist growing conditions all work. Magenta-pink flowers in early summer. USDA Zones: 2-9

Goat's Beard, Aruncus dioicus assumes grand proportions, but is a wonderful 
plant for part shade if you have the space.

Goat's Beard, Aruncus dioicus: Full sun or part shade. Height 120-180 cm, Spread: 90-150 cm. Moist or wet growing conditions. USDA Zones: 2-9


The difficulty this next backyard presented was a fairly steep slope. The designers of this water feature  turned what could have been a problem into an asset. 

Just off the back deck, they put a koi pond (hidden from this vantage point by the plantings around it).





From the koi pond, the water runs down the sloping terrain and under a small foot bridge.

Yellow Loosestrife, Lysimachia punctata: Lysimachia punctata is a vigorous plant that forms a spreading clump with spikes of star-shaped yellow flowers.  

Yellow Loosestrife, Lysimachia punctata: Full sun, part shade or even full shade. Height 60-90 cm, Spread: 60-90 cm. Normal, sandy or clay soils are all suitable. In a border Yellow Losestrife needs to be reduced in size every year or two so it does not take over. There are a number of newer cultivars, some of which are better than others. I'd recommend doing a bit of research before selecting this plant for your garden. USDA Zones: 2-9


The stream empties into a second, larger pond at a lower elevation.





Do you see the frog stretched out on lily pads? 

Isn't that the life! Sunbathing and swimming all summer long.

25 comments:

  1. Precioso jardín, es una belleza!!!!
    Abrazos.

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  2. Beautiful gardens and ponds, but today the frog steals the show, I almost envy him.

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  3. Hubby always talks about a pond in the backyard, I shudder at the thought of what Ben would do to it. Lovely gardens and water features.

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  4. I´d love a little pond in my garden! :-)

    http://tinajoathome.com/

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  5. What an incredible set up with the second garden. Love it! The whole yard looks like a wild oasis and so lush and green. I like the way the gravel and large rocks are set around the edge of the first pond. I think I'd like to be like that frog this summer ;) Wendy x

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  6. This is a beautiful garden...makes you want to stroll through it!

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  7. Such perfect timing, Jennifer. I am actually looking for ideas for our pond area, and I just love some of these. Thank you!!

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  8. What a great garden to see. Water in the garden is great, so much to see around a pond.
    Have a wonderful day.

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  9. Two nicely naturalized ponds. They are both tucked in and slightly hidden, which makes them intriguing and very natural looking. Beautifully done. Thanks for identifying the plants around them... I like to know what we are looking at!

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  10. Our garden pond was in a position that really was too shady. Did pretty well in spite of it. Love the water lilies in your last picture, that is one plant that really needs full sun in Aberdeen.

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  11. We are thinking about putting in a pond and this provided a lot of inspiration! Thanks!

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  12. Your water features are gorgeous and well-established. The lily pads always offer so much interest in ponds, especially with frogs spread out among them. I do not have any water features other than a standing water fountain, but there will come a day when I have a spurt of energy...

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  13. Mmm lovely ... I especially like the naturalistic feel of the stream, as it blends into the landscape so well. Love the Water Hyacinths but they are too tender for me to keep here in the Midlands, UK. I have tried to overwinter them without success.

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  14. HA! Look at that frog! Isn't he just living the life!!! Truly amazing to see what has been done on regular suburban lots! Holy cow is this just fantastic! These water features work because they melt into their surroundings so beautifully! Nothing bothers me more than ponds just stuck in the middle of the yard with no thought! These I could so do! And I will be pinning some of these fantastic plant combinations! Lovely week to you friend! Nicole xo

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  15. I think it would be grand to live in a place with wonderful water features like these. To enjoy all that lush greenery and even have frogs and koi to enjoy.

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  16. What a pleasure to see all these photos. I fell in love with that statue of the heron.

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  17. Having a lovely pond is one of my dreams...and looking at these has me sighing! The second one was fantastic, I loved the heron and the frog and the planting is lovely.xxx

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  18. Jennifer girl ... my heart always skips a beat when I look at water features and these are simply beautiful! .. I would like to expand the one we have .. it is the pond-less kind .. but I would like layers of rocks that the water rushes over ... trickles over ? ... I love the basalt rock we have but you know gardeners .. we always want to tweak our features right ? ... LOL
    Lovely pictures girl : )
    My helllebore are blooming nicely ... but I did get over enthusiastic and cut back most of the foliage on them to start out fresh ... I have to get working tomorrow on some things .. the weather is finally cooperating !
    Gorgeous post ... I never tire of seeing water features !!
    Joy : )

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  19. I love a garden with a pond - it makes all the difference - we have two - one for the frogs to lay their spawn and one for the fish. Is it any wonder that Monet loved painting water lilies - that last picture with the frog is beautiful.

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  20. Beautiful post with lots of information. I love the frog!

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  21. Love the frog stretched out on the lily pad! We used to have a small pond with a good amount of shade -- no liner or anything, just a hole in the ground. There are actually a lot of good wetland plants that can take quite a bit of shade -- pickerelweed, lizard's tail, Geranium maculatum, Atamasco lily, spiderwort, sweet pepper bush, Virginia sweetspire, Joe Pye weed, turtlehead, and many ferns.

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  22. As usual, your stunningly sharp photography has transported me to these 2 beautiful gardens. I can almost hear the water gently moving. The fishies were especially cute :)

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  23. A fantastic post Jennifer it's so great to have a pond. So much to see when you watch what is going on around this pond.
    Have a wonderful day Jennifer.

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  24. That is the garden of my dreams...it's stunningly beautiful. He must spend every waking moment in it to keep it so beautiful.

    Jen

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  25. Magnifique! Que de beaux jardins vous nous présentez.

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