The term is “water garden” these days because that term is easier to sell, but they amount to deep puddles. And nothing adds as much to a garden than a deep pool of water. It is magical.
Ours cost $140. We got out easy. Some will tell you a water garden needs pumps, filters, aerators, heaters, monitors, exotic plants and fish, and all manner of gadgets designed to drain your checkbook. My son and I took the low-tech approach: We dug a kidney-shaped hole about 3 feet deep at the middle, lined it with a rubber pond liner (there’s the $140), added six fish, built a natural-looking shoreline of logs and big stones, called it a bog pond, and went about our business. Oh, right, we transferred in some lily pads from a nearby pond.
By and by, frogs from Heaven-only-knows-where moved in, along with water-strider bugs and other acquatic life. The bog puddle became a sanctuary, a place of wonder for kids especially. You couldn’t see the bottom. It was McElligot’s pool right there at the farm.
When the water grew cloudy with algae in August, I sprayed in fresh water with the hose for aeration. I kept a hold poked in the ice in winter.
And it worked. And it’s beautiful. And there you are.