By Eric Triplett
The life of a pond installer is dotted with moments of quiet satisfaction. Getting a contract signed is an obvious one, as is accepting final payment. But in between, you have to take positive moments where you can find them – and for me, there’s nothing more soul-satisfying than introducing aquatic animals to a new pond I’ve built.
In the specific project covered in the video linked below, those creatures are tadpoles, and their immersion in the water is one of the last steps involved in creating an ecosystem in which they will thrive, grow to maturity and adjust to an amphibious life that will make them as much at home around the water as in it.
My clients love these moments as well, and I find that this is the time when they’re most receptive to instruction on how to work with their new watershape through the period it will take the ecosystem to become self-regulating.
For starters, I let them know that, within a year or so, the tadpoles will find their food in the rich aquatic environment we’ve established for them – but that in the meantime they’ll need to supplement their diets with flaked food, added moderately and daily.
I also advise them against using a hose to top off the pond, suggesting instead that they keep a good-size (but manageable) bucket nearby for that purpose. I alert them to the importance of topping that bucket off after adding water to the pond so that it can sit a while as chlorine and other chemicals in tap water that can hurt a pond’s inhabitants will have a chance to gas off.
Most of all, I let them know that I’m proud of what I’ve done and will be there for them to answer questions and deal with anything that might come up – but mostly that I’ll be leaving them alone to enjoy the new world they’ve added to their backyard.
These, I must say, are satisfying conversations.
To see how this frog-pond project turned out, click here.
Eric Triplett is founder and chief executive officer at The Pond Digger Waterscape Design & Construction in Yucaipa, Calif. He may be reached at [email protected] ponddigger.com.