Clay Bottom Ponds in Maryland
What is a Clay Bottom Pond?
Clay bottom ponds are ponds that have a natural earth liner, as opposed to a synthetic liner such as EPDM rubber. Earth bottom pond is probably a better term because the liner is usually composed of more than just clay. In fact, most earth bottom ponds consist of sand, gravel, and clay.
The clay percentage usually comprising 20 percent or more of the mixture.
On a site where clay soils are not available, various amendments can be introduced, such as bentonite, or polymer compounds, or clay can be trucked in from another nearby location.
Bentonite is a colloidal clay that comes in a powder form, and looks like talcum powder. Bentonite clay can swell up to 20 times it’s natural size, which makes it an excellent soil amendment for earth bottom ponds.
Do Earth Bottom Ponds Leak?
Earth bottom ponds generally leak to some degree. The idea is to construct a pond so that the natural seepage is minimal and unnoticeable. There are various practices that we us to make this happen. Every site is unique. We do a soil analysis of the proposed area to decide whether we have quality pond soils, or whether we need to amend the soil in some fashion.
What Can We do with Our Community Storm Water Management (Cesspool?)?
Storm water management ponds in Maryland are a disaster. The knowledge is not there within the governing bodies to design these ponds properly. Many residential buildings are looking right over their Cesspool ponds.
Unfortunately, most of those folks wish they were not. We design them in such a way that they’re not only functional, but they’re also healthy and attractive.
In fact, Creative Land Design specializes in turning these types of ponds into a focal point, even showcasing them within the community.
We use our years of water gardening knowledge & combine our technical expertise in pond ecology to formulate an attractive & balanced ecosystem. The result is shown in some of the pictures you see on this page.
It is a much better situation if we can design the system ourselves, however we can take an existing Cesspool pond and transform it into a show piece. We can literally add thousands upon thousands to home values by renovating an existing Cesspool pond, and create a water view property as opposed to a swamp view property.
Okay, I admit, that was a little over the top. You can sense my frustration with Maryland storm water management ponds. It doesn’t have to be this way!!!
Aeration is Key
A beautiful pond will quickly become a nightmare if aeration is not installed. Various forms of bottom aeration are the best methods. Aeration is the key to a healthy balanced system for any pond. It’s the backbone for all other elements in the pond. A healthy pond begins with a good design that includes aeration.
Advantages and Attributes of an Earth Bottom Pond
We already discussed the benefits of renovating an existing Cesspool pond, or properly designing one in the first place. But what if I have some acreage and would like to install one of these ponds because I like the idea?
Well, then you’re in for a treat. There is nothing like owning one of these ponds. Many people are transforming the backyard into their own private oasis, a mini vacation, without the worries of the airlines losing the luggage.
Imagine walking out your back door, and in less than fifty steps your taking a sunset cruise :-), gliding your paddle boat or kayak through beautiful water lilies and enjoying this years new hatch of ducklings as they parade on by. How cool is that?
We call it landscaping for the ducks, with ornamental benefits, a pleasant blending of hardy water lilies and other native, ornamental plants, and a natural habitat for desirable wildlife. Some homeowners go the extra mile and add a fountain, a stream, or even a waterfall, all of which are great for aeration, again, a necessity for the overall health of the pond.
Clay bottom ponds are a great asset to any property with some space. To learn more about various aspects of clay bottom ponds click on any of the following topics:
- Pictures of Clay Bottom Ponds
- Pond Aeration- Bottom Aeration vs. Fountains
- Bacteria for Pond Health and Clarity
- Pond Plants for Filtration and Nutrient Uptake
- Wildlife in the Clay Bottom Pond