How to create a mini pond
In this tutorial we take a look at how to create a mini pond. Here’s how to have a small aquatic ecosystem with aquatic plants on your balcony!
The simplicity of creating a mini pond
If you do not have a garden but you would still like to have a small aquatic ecosystem with beautiful flowers, you can create a mini pond or micro pond on your terrace or balcony!
A mini pond is a miniature pond made inside a container that can be a plastic tub, a waterproofed wooden half-barrel or a stone tub, for example.
I recommend using an 80 cm diameter tub with straight walls (sloping walls take up space)
The ideal height is about 32 to 50 cm. For aquatic plants, a container with a height of 32 cm is sufficient because small water lilies grow very well in shallow water. If you are planning to put fish, and you live in a place where more than 10 cm of ice forms in winter, then it is recommended to use a container with a height of 50 cm.
This is what happens 3 months later after setting up a mini pond with our Micro Pond Kit.
Where to place your mini pond
Aquatic plants need at least half a day of direct sun per day (6 hours on average) to live.
With little sun you risk having very poor water lily blooms, and also rather stunted vegetation. I therefore recommend that you place your mini pond in full sun all the day long, or exposed to the sun for at least 6 hours per day in the morning or in middle hours of the day.
Aquatic plants to place in your mini pond
As in a normal pond, the simplest types of plants that I recommend you to include are 3, i.e. water lilies, marsh plants and submerged oxygenating plants.
Let me give you an example of an ideal set-up for an 80 cm diameter mini pond:
- a small/medium-sized water lily to be placed in the centre,
- 3 marsh plants (one of medium height and two smaller ones),
- 2 submerged oxygenating plants, such as Ceratophyllum demersum and Elodea canadensis).
All these different plants create a harmonious environment, pleasing to the eye and in perfect balance.
The water lily not only provides beautiful blooms but also shades the surface by reducing the impact of the sun’s rays. Marsh plants and submerged oxygenating plants help to oxygenate and keep the water clean.
To learn more about how to grow aquatic plants download the free “Guide to Growing Aquatic Plants“.
If you don’t have any idea how to choose the most suitable aquatic plants, the Micro Pond Kit that you can find on Easy Pond may be for you.
So, even if you live in the city, whenever you want, you can easily disconnect from your hectic everyday life, and stop to admire your mini pond with the beautiful aquatic plants and maybe some small medaka fish.
The mini pond with lotus flowers
There is also a second option for setting up a mini pond.
You probably know the lotus flower as an exotic species of aquatic plant, which needs a lot of space to grow. This is actually the case for the classic large lotus flowers, but you should know that there are dwarf varieties of lotus flowers that are perfectly suited to small spaces and thus also to mini ponds!
If you want to add a dwarf lotus flower in your mini pond, you have to give it the entire container space. The lotus flower needs a lot of soil to flourish, so you should only keep the lotus flower and no other plants in that mini pond.
To create a pond with lotus flowers simply fill the container half with soil and half with water, and plant the lotus flower in the soil.
Then you have to plant the rhizome in the soil as explained in the “Guide to Growing Aquatic Plants“.
Here is an example of a mini pond with lotus flowers.
The false myth of mosquitoes in ponds
Many people are afraid to build a pond or mini pond near their house because they fear being invaded by mosquitoes… This is absolutely not true!
Mosquitoes will certainly deposit their larvae in the water of the mini pond, but you should know that there are animals that are really fond of these larvae!
In a garden, gerridae, notonectidae, dragonflies, frogs and other small animals that eat mosquito larvae arrive naturally.
Among the most common mosquito predators are dragonfly larvae, gerridae (also called skater insects, which walk with their legs above the water surface) and notonectidae (which are aquatic insects that you often see swimming just under the water surface).
If you have a mini pond on your balcony, you can directly insert the ultimate predators of mosquito larvae, i.e. fish!
The most commonly used fish in mini ponds are goldfish, medaka or gambusia (mosquitofish) .
Goldfish get quite large, they foul the water and can damage submerged plants.
Gambusia are very voracious predators. In fact, they devour not only mosquito larvae but also all other insects beneficial to the pond. Moreover, if they are released into natural lakes or streams they can become a danger to the ecosystem, given their prolific nature!
The recommended fish for a mini pond are therefore medaka, i.e. small, 4-5 cm long fish that are very hardy and harmless for the plants and the balance of the mini pond. Medaka do not spoil the plants and do not foul the water, as they are very small.
If you do not have space for a pond in your garden, but you would like to have one, as you have realised, a mini pond is a good compromise for you, at a low cost and zero risk!
With a purchase of at least 100€ you gain access to Aquatic Plants Gold Exclusive and enjoy the following benefits:
- free shipping (in major European countries, or discounted in other countries);
- assistance services for 12 months;
- option to activate the 100% Growth Guarantee (on water lilies, lotus flowers and marsh plants, recommended by us through the Easy Pond Kits or Pond Consultation, or chosen by carefully reading the plant data sheets on the website and planted according to the printed manuals included in the shipment);
- detailed videos on how to grow aquatic plants;
- practical printed manuals on how to plant aquatic plants correctly in order to sort all your doubts out.
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