I just love seeing before and after photos of other peoples' projects! It doesn't matter if they are home remodeling photos or gardens or backyard ponds or landscaping; I get ideas from all of them! I think many people get design ideas this way! (think: Pinterest!) So, here is a backyard waterfall project that Jeff built several years ago for some wonderful people!
The first shot shows a side view of their backyard. It was a nice, suburban back yard in the Minneapolis, St. Paul area with a very thick lawn! (Part of our work can disrupt the grass but Jeff can easily fix that.) The slope created the perfect canvas for a disappearing waterfall.
Jeff always begins his waterfall design with a hose and can of spray paint!
After the basic waterfall design was laid out, heavy machinery was brought in! Disappearing waterfalls have unique, underground parts that have to be dug in for the waterfall to work properly and remain clean.
You can see the small patio being constructed next to the stream in this photo. A solid base was placed first so the patio pavers will stay nice and level even with winter freeze/thaw patterns.
What looks like a hose is actually the black plastic edging installed around the future garden area near the stream.
Ahh! Some finished pictures showing the beautiful rock and stream bed! (This stone is called tiger stripe or blue weathered edge.)
Jeff put landscape lighting around the stream in the gardens. He also installed LED underwater lights in the waterfall itself!
And here is the waterfall running! You can see several different areas that it drops and the large stone used as a bridge connecting one garden side to the other near the patio. An assortment of perennials and shrubs were installed too and will eventually fill in nicely around all the rocks. (See the naughty dog enjoying the stream?!?)
Tough luck living in Minneapolis, MN this weekend! Since it seems like the spring pond season will never come, I found this video filled with blooming flowers quite cheerful!
If you like tattoos, particularly a flower tattoo, this plant highlighted in the video would be perfect sitting on your front steps or planted near your pond, or even placed in a pot sitting on top of your skimmer box. (I saw something like that last year.)
A little background for the video: Because I am part of the plant world, I subscribe to various plant magazines. (To be perfectly honest, this doesn’t have much to do with ponds or leaks in your pond or even fountains...)
The spring trials are basically a bunch of growers showing off their newest, coolest plants for growers and nursery people. So by watching this video, you are getting a sneak peak at what nurseries in Minnesota will have soon! (Please note: your local nursery may or may not have these plants this season.)
Anyway, enjoy the video! Keep in mind that it is made with a nursery grower in mind, not a backyard pond enthusiast but I hope it brings a bit of spring to brighten your day!
(Written By the Pond Momma)
He wanted a pond….
I must be honest with you; I didn’t want a pond. My husband did though and tried talking me into it for several years. I didn’t want to spend the money; I didn’t want to take up space in our (very) small back yard; I didn’t like the thought of standing water when we had small children around. But, we ended up with a pond anyway! And you know what? I am really glad that we have one now. Now I am the one asking for a bigger pond or a longer stream or a log bridge over part. My husband laughs.
The pond is our favorite place to hang in our backyard pretty much the entire year. As soon as the ice melts, the kids are playing on the edge which turns into wading and looking for the fish. A few weeks ago it rained one of those early spring rains. The pond didn’t have any ice but snow still covered all the dried plants. It was so pretty I tried to take a movie.
Jeff built our pond with steps going down. The each step is only one rock deep so (when) our small children step in, they just sit up and climb out. There are two more steps that are 9 inches. The fish cave is on the lowest level. The pond is only 2 feet deep, and the fish overwinter every year.
Last summer the kids found out they could use their snorkel masks to watch the fish! Ha ha!
I think dipping my toes in during the summer is relaxing but my favorite time is in fall, when the plants are mature and turning copper colored and a few red maple leaves float across the water. I can see the pond at night from my bedroom window and can hear the waterfall echo bouncing off the neighbor’s house up into my upstairs bedroom. (The neighbors enjoy that too!)
If you’ve ever had a backyard pond with a flagstone waterfall, then you know what kind of magic it puts into your yard. The yard seems alive. More birds and butterflies visit. Nature seems closer because the water brings it to you. Even the landscaping seems more beautiful. If someone asked if I would recommend having a pond, I’d say yes in a heartbeat. So glad Jeff talked me into it! Try it. You will be glad to have a backyard pond too!
Jeff Chudek has been building ponds and waterfalls professionally since 2005. As a kid, his favorite time of year was spring, because the spring thaw created so much mud and puddles, and all the trees and plants were waking up. He loves figuring out the best way to use something, and fixing things that are broken. He's good at coming up with ideas, and helping choose the best idea for you.