We dug this pond by hand. It was a huge project and took quite a while because we had to dig out so many large rocks. We have an abundance of small natural springs on our property, and we could see right away that we had chosen a good spot for our pond. Unfortunately though, many of these springs don’t produce much more than a trickle. We were hoping that if we kept digging, we would hit a large spring eventually, and that did happen… but only after we had dug down to a depth of over five and a half feet.

Of all of our landscaping projects, our little pond is one of my favorites. There is always something to watch in and around the water. Right now the pond is alive with fast developing tadpoles. From the variations in color and size, I think some have to be toads and salamanders, although the majority are probably frogs because any walk around the pond means at least twenty frogs hopping into the water. We’ve seen deer, raccoons, coyote, and turkeys stop to drink, and on two occasions a large crane.

So the pond is nearly six feet deep and roughly eighteen feet wide and twenty feet long. We might have made it bigger than that, but we ran into some really huge underground boulders that we couldn’t possibly have gotten out of the hole without machinery, so we used them as our boundary lines. The pond doesn’t have a liner, a filter, or a pump. The water trickling in from all the little springs keeps the water level constant and the pond’s own ecosystem keeps the water fresh and clear.

We liked this first pond so much we decided to dig another pond on the other end of our property. I have been wanting to start a bog garden in that area for some time, and I thought it would be nice to have a pond there with pitcher plants growing nearby. It was obvious from the start that this pond is going to have a more vigorous water supply than the other one because the biggest problem so far in the digging has been having to bail the water out of the hole.