Pond gets an upgrade

By early April the frog pond had quietened down again, and as I had been thinking about redoing the pond properly, I thought that now might be the time to start, especiallly now that the hot weather was over.  The pond was looking alright when I took the cover off, but the black plastic around the edge was already perishing.

The pond before its upgrade

Let me tell you now that if I had any idea how long it was going to take, I would have chickened out of it.  I thought that it could be all done in two weeks.  It took 3 months.

The first job was to empty out the water and that alone took a day.  A friend thought the frogs had burrowed.  Apparently all the noise had been about sex and now that the deed was done, they’d headed underground.  As I emptied the pond, apart from the multitude of tadpoles, around 5 frogs were still in the pond and the rest I found hidden underneath the black plastic.  All the of above was put into tubs and any other container I could find, but that night, I found my now empty pond crawling with frogs again.

The next two days were spent pouring cement in the bottom, and thought there were few construction sites lovelier than this one.  Good late summer rains had meant all the flowers were out.

Stage 1 of upgrade: concreting

The bricking up the sides took weeks longer, especially as dillberry here had not worried about making the bottom of the pond perfectly flat!

Stage 2:bricking

After that I rendered the sides and put slates on top.  In the meantime the whole of the garden was drying right out and some frogs were found on the south side of the house where it was cooler and damper.

Stage 3: covering the bricks

After this it sat for several weeks to cure before I applied the pond paint.  The idea of pond paint is to keep the water out of the concrete and stop the cement leaching into the water.  I used Bondall Pondtite which was not cheap and did not cure in the time it was supposed to because it was mid winter.  A second application might have turned out well only it rained and some patches blistered again.  I gave up after that and hoped for the best as most of the concrete  was covered.  If you want to use that Pondtite definitely do it in summer!

In early July after a prayer I put all the plants, water and tadpoles back.

The pond upgraded at last

 

One month later it is totally covered in duckweed and the lovely reflections are gone.  I’m wondering if it has anything to do with the warmer weather we had for a week or so early in August.  A week ago a cold front came through bringing a little rain.  And ahead of the rain, a miracle.  A croak!  At the moment it is a single voice calling out for a mate.

Covered in duckweed but the frogs are coming back.

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