The web site for all professionals and consumers who've made or want to make water a part of their lives

0It doesn't happen every time.  But as Mike Gannon reports here, new ponds will head in this disturbing direction often enough that he prepares all of his clients to deal with a distressing transformation that can occur within weeks after a pond has been filled with water for the very first time.

Given the opportunity, Raymond Jungles jumped at the challenge of surrounding a home far from his usual base with water and native plants. As he discusses here, making it work was about identifying a new palette and using it in ways that harmonized with his design instincts.
Given the opportunity, Raymond Jungles jumped at the challenge of surrounding a home far from his usual base with water and native plants.  As he discusses here, making it work was about identifying a new palette and using it in ways that harmonized with his design instincts.
By Raymond Jungles

My work as a landscape architect is usually recognized for two distinguishing characteristics – first for the inspiration I draw from my friend and mentor, the late, great Brazilian environmental artist Roberto Burle Marx, and then for my driving ambition to preserve and restore habitats, as expressed in projects throughout South Florida and across the Florida Keys and various islands in the Caribbean and the West Indies.

This is why seeing the project discussed here comes as something of a surprise to many who are familiar with my work: It’s located in Big Timber, Mont., a blip on the road between

As his watershaping career has progressed, Dave Garton has learned the value of finding ways to help his clients fully express themselves. It makes business sense, he says, but it also leads to odd little challenges that have fostered the constant expansion of his technical capabilities.
As his watershaping career has progressed, Dave Garton has learned the value of finding ways to help his clients fully express themselves.  It makes business sense, he says, but it also leads to odd little challenges that have fostered the constant expansion of his technical capabilities.
By Dave Garton

As I’ve gotten better at what I do as a watershaper, I’ve found that lots of the maturing has been related to getting really good at listening to my clients. Once I figured out how to attune myself to their visions and voices and set aside my ego (however temporary that might be), I found that my designs crackled with new energy I was borrowing from people who wanted my help in expressing themselves.

That’s the artistic, inspired side of watershaping, of course, and as my listening skills grew and my projects took on new and sometimes

Asked to beautify an unlovely, long-duration mess caused by a natural, spring-fed stream, Steve Sandalis knew from experience that working directly with Mother Nature is serious business. That's why he took a big step back and let the setting guide his efforts -- and his schedule.
Asked to beautify an unlovely, long-duration mess caused by a natural, spring-fed stream, Steve Sandalis knew from experience that working directly with Mother Nature is serious business.  That's why he took a big step back and let the setting guide his efforts -- and his schedule.
By Steve Sandalis

For a watershaper who’s spent a career designing and installing natural-looking ponds, streams and waterfalls using pumps and liners, this project was both an unusual treat and a distinct challenge – a dream job, as I saw it.

I was called to the property at the suggestion of a landscape-maintenance company that wanted nothing to do with what the homeowners were asking, and the reason was pretty obvious: A spring-fed stream flowed across the property as it had done for at least hundreds and perhaps thousands of years, and it needed

Working in remote locations is not uncommon, but as Ed Beaulieu relates here, moving a whole crew of U.S. pond-installation experts to a South American city to build three huge watershapes was a test of everything he knows about people, logistics and project management.
Working in remote locations is not uncommon, but as Ed Beaulieu relates here, moving a whole crew of U.S. pond-installation experts to a South American city to build three huge watershapes was a test of everything he knows about people, logistics and project management.
By Ed Beaulieu

In any large-scale watershaping project, managing the logistics has a way of becoming the most important task of all.  In the case under discussion here, that might even be an understatement when you weigh all of the complicating factors.

First, the job site was located in central Colombia, in the foothills of South America’s Andes mountain range.  Second, that locale is essentially a tropical rainforest, and when it wasn’t pouring by the bucketful, it was crushingly hot and humid.  Third, ours is a North American company that works with its own products and has no distribution in Colombia.

And there’s more:  To get the job done, we knew we

0When a pond's fish shift to spawning mode, all sorts of things start happening in a hurry -- in turn whipping new pond owners into a frenzy right alongside their fish.  At these times, Mike Gannon counsels restraint and helps novices recognize and follow what's happening.

 

 

4 4 gannon video artBy Mike Gannon

In the last video I shared with you, I relayed information about upgrading a do-it-yourself pond into a watergarden that exemplifies the value of an informed, professional touch. This time, a pond we updated was large enough that I know it was installed by a professional – but one who at the time seems to have been a bit lacking in insight and imagination.

There’s only a brief glimpse of

2 7 gannon video artMike Gannon is always gratified when a do-it-yourself pond owner trusts him enough to seek his professional help.  But as he relates in introducing this video on one such transformation, there's a single point he keeps very much in mind as he approaches the various tasks at hand.

 

 

 

9-6 triplett video artBy Eric Triplett

Relatively speaking, building a Koi pond is often the easy part.  The tough part?  Working with clients to select the fish who will call the new watershape “home.”

I have to say that I’ve been bitten hard by the Koi bug and have spent countless hours learning as much as I can about these beautiful fish.  It’s a level of involvement that

8-9-17MG0Although a little algae in a pond is generally a good and inevitable thing, observes Mike Gannon, a bloom of any noticeable extent is never truly welcome.  That's why he has sized up and is ready  to recommend a number of ways to help keep the intrusive greenery at bay.

 

 

 

Setting up a vanishing-edge Koi pond offers unusual challenges to the watershaper. First, notes Scott Cohen, you need to accommodate the fish and keep them safe. Then there are the aesthetic issues -- plus a few details of installation that require extra-special attention.
Setting up a vanishing-edge Koi pond offers unusual challenges to the watershaper.  First, notes Scott Cohen, you need to accommodate the fish and keep them safe. Then there are the aesthetic issues -- plus a few details of installation that require extra-special attention.
By Scott Cohen

Given the choice, there are few projects I enjoy more than renovations:  The process of taking an existing outdoor space that isn’t making people happy and coming to their rescue with a personalized dreamscape is about as satisfying as it gets.

This sort of shift in vision happens quite often when homes change hands and the new owners bring in a different set of needs and desires.  In grand terms, there might be nothing particularly “wrong” with the original setting, but if the new owners either want to

0There was a time when lots of ponds were set up without gravel, notes Ed Beaulieu.  But as he discusses here, there are so many advantages to lining their interiors with rocks of various sizes that it's time to push that old practice out of the pond-making picture, once and for all.

 

Pitching in to move four large turtles out of a plain concrete tank and into a beautiful pond was soul satisfying, notes Ed Beaulieu. But making the project a gift to a pioneering turtle researcher? That was even more rewarding for the 50 skilled volunteers who helped make it happen.
Pitching in to move four large turtles out of a plain concrete tank and into a beautiful pond was soul satisfying, notes Ed Beaulieu.  But making the project a gift to a pioneering turtle researcher?  That was even more rewarding for the 50 skilled volunteers who helped make it happen.
By Ed Beaulieu

There’s little in life as soul-satisfying as working in a good cause.

As pond professionals, of course, we get lots of opportunities to do nice things for our clients – by beautifying their backyards, bringing fish and aquatic plants into their lives and creating sources of soothing serenity they can enjoy each and every day.  That’s great, but in the project described in this article, the level of service reached a much higher plane.

One of the cool things about

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