Discover the Beauty of Small Garden Ponds and How to Make One Yourself

Discover the Beauty of Small Garden Ponds and How to Make One Yourself

Garden ponds are a great addition to any outdoor space, providing a peaceful and tranquil atmosphere as well as attracting wildlife. Even small ponds can bring life and beauty to your garden, and can be built using a variety of materials, including pre-formed pond liners or flexible pond liners. However, small ponds have their own unique considerations, from selecting the right location to choosing the appropriate size and shape, as well as understanding how to maintain water quality and keep plants and fish healthy. In this article, we will explore some important factors to consider when building and maintaining a small garden pond.

How small can a garden pond be?

A garden pond can be as small or as large as you want it to be. For a simpler, traditional planted fish pond, a surface area of around five square metres and around 60cm or so at its deepest – a volume of 3 cubic metres – should be perfectly adequate and few gardens are unable to accommodate a feature of these dimensions. However, if you only have a small space, a mini pond may be a better option for you. These can be as small as some kind of container and still allow you to enjoy the benefits of having a water feature in your garden.

What are the disadvantages of a small pond?

While a small pond can be a great addition to any garden, there are some disadvantages to consider. A smaller body of water fluctuates more wildly, and is harder to keep stable for aquatic life. Due to this, small ponds may not be able to support certain types of fish or aquatic plants, which can limit your options when it comes to designing your pond.

What is the best shape for a small pond?

The shape of your pond can play a significant role in maintaining a healthy pond ecosystem. A square or rectangle pond with corners may impede water flow, creating dead spots where bad bacteria and algae can grow. On the other hand, a pond with a circular or oval shape will promote better water flow and is much better for fish. Additionally, a curved or irregular shape can add visual interest and make your pond feel more natural. Ultimately, the shape of your pond will depend on your personal preferences and the space available in your garden.

How to do a water change in a small pond?

Performing regular water changes is important for maintaining a healthy pond ecosystem. You can remove the water with a pump, a pump diverter on your existing pump, or pond vacuum. Before you start, make sure to remove any fish or plants from the pond to prevent them from being damaged or injured during the process. Be sure to only change a portion of the water at a time to prevent any sudden changes in water chemistry, which can stress or harm your fish.

How do you keep water in a small pond?

One of the most important components of a healthy pond is a quality liner. When you’re installing your pond, make sure to add a liner, which are often made of rubber or PVC. There are different types of liners for different pond needs, but they all serve a similar purpose, keeping the water in the pond rather than seeping into the ground below. A good quality liner will also prevent any harmful chemicals or pollutants from seeping into the pond, which can harm your fish and aquatic plants. Additionally, regular maintenance, such as removing debris and checking for leaks, is important for ensuring that your pond stays in good condition for years to come.

Do you need a fence around a small pond?

There is no law that requires fencing around a pond, but your local government may have its own jurisdiction, so it’s always best to ask when you are having your pond installed. Fencing is not only a good way to keep your children safe, but also to keep your fish and other creatures safe from predators. Some pond owners choose to install fences to keep out wildlife, while others may use a netting system to keep birds away such as herons. However, keep in mind that some wildlife may still find ways to get around or under fences, so it’s important to monitor the area around your pond for any signs of predators.

Do you need a pond liner for a small pond?

A pond liner is an essential component for every pond, no matter how small it is. It’s crucial to prevent water from seeping through the base of the pond and into the soil below, which can lead to leaks and other problems. There are several options for pond liners, including pre-formed plastic liners and flexible liners made of rubber or PVC. The choice of liner material will depend on the size and shape of your pond, as well as your budget and personal preferences. When selecting a liner, it’s important to choose one that is durable and resistant to punctures, tears, and UV damage.

Can you put a small pond in your backyard?

Yes, you can easily create a small pond in your backyard. The first step is to select a location that receives adequate sunlight and shade, and is away from any overhanging trees. The next step is to choose a liner material that is suitable for your needs, whether it be a pre-formed plastic liner or a flexible liner made of rubber or PVC. Once you have your liner, you can dig a hole for your pond, install the liner, and fill the pond with water. Consider adding a filter to keep the water clean, and plants and fish to create a natural ecosystem. Regular maintenance such as removing debris and checking the water quality will keep your pond healthy and attractive.

Do you need planning permission for a small pond?

In the UK, ponds are generally considered Outbuilding permitted development, which means planning permission is not required unless you live in a listed building or a conservation area. However, it’s always a good idea to contact your local planning office and explain what you are intending to do before starting any work if it’s a big one. They will be able to provide specific advice on whether planning permission is required in your area and whether there are any specific rules or guidelines that you need to follow.

How much does it cost to build a small pond in the UK?

The cost of building a small pond in the UK can vary depending on several factors such as the size, shape, and materials used. On average, you can expect to pay around £800 – £1,500 for a small raised pond, and £1,500 – £2,900 for a medium raised pond. However, the cost can be higher or lower depending on the specific materials used for the pond liner, filtration system, and other components. It’s always a good idea to get multiple quotes from reputable pond builders or contractors to compare costs and ensure that you get the best value for your money.

Can I make a small pond in my backyard?

Building a small pond in your backyard can be a fun and rewarding project that anyone can tackle. The first step is to choose the location for your pond. Pick a spot that gets a good amount of sunlight but also has some shade, especially in the afternoon. Once you’ve found a good spot, the next step is to choose a liner. After selecting the liner, you need to dig the hole and install the liner properly. Then, install a filter to keep the water clean and consider aeration to provide oxygen for your fish and other aquatic life. You can also add plants and fish to your pond to make it more lively and attractive. Regular maintenance is necessary to ensure your pond remains healthy, so you’ll need to clean it and check the water levels regularly.


In conclusion, small ponds can add beauty and life to any backyard and are easy to install and maintain. The ideal size of a small pond is around five square meters with a depth of 60cm or so. Circular or oval-shaped ponds are recommended as they promote better water flow and are better for fish. A pond liner is necessary to stop water from leaking out, and regular maintenance is required to keep the pond clean and healthy. While there is no law requiring fencing around a small pond, it is recommended for safety reasons.

Overall, a small pond can be a great addition to any backyard, providing a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere while enhancing the natural beauty of the landscape.

Last Modified: April 3, 2023