Do you have a limited amount of yard space to work with, but want the serenity and comfort of moving water? There are multiple ways to approach waterscape design, but many techniques involve large ponds, reservoirs, or deep digging to maintain water as evaporation takes its course. For limited yard spaces, consider a few of these techniques and designs to deliver inspiring water features without the deep digging and wide yard requirements.
If you want a small stream or running water path that moves throughout your yard, you'll need a way to stop all of the water from soaking into the soil quickly. To have a lasting effect, the water needs to move to and from hydraulic pumps or from your water source of choice, and a simple trench dug into the dirt won't be enough.
The easiest way to accomplish a guided stream is to use pool cement as a trench material. You can even line the cement with tile to give different types of flooring designs such as mosaic to the stream, although there are continued maintenance concerns with tiles such as cleaning and removing buildup.
If you don't want to worry about stains, or would like something more natural in appearance, river rocks are the way to go. Landscapers can dig a trench and compact the ground, then add river rocks to the trench to act as the bed of the stream.
For the best results, river rocks should be compressed into the floor and walls of the trench. By pouring river rocks into the soil without compacting, the rocks can be easily swept away by a few weeks of running water as a sort of fast-onset erosion. Compacting multiple layers of river rocks is more expensive, but can last a lot longer.
Water Flow And Aeration
The appearance of moving water in nature is a source and destination relationship. Water moves from higher ground (or higher pressure) areas and goes downstream, usually with the aid of gravity. The source is usually another body of water, such as combining with multiple streams to form a river, pouring directly into big rivers, emptying into ponds and lakes, or emptying into bays or the ocean.
To get the same effect without creating a large body of water or losing everything to the soil, your water paths will need pumps. Hydraulic pumps are the easiest option for water movement, as they create enough force to move water in a specific direction.
If you want a small pond, shallow well, or other water deposit without dealing with fast infestation by bacteria and mosquitoes, aeration is necessary. Aeration is the act of adding air to something, and in this case, you're using an aerator to pump water into a small pool.
Aeration can be in the form of a standard aeration pump at the bottom of a pool, but the designs can get quite creative. Pumice is a type of rock often used on top of a small aerator to give the appearance of natural rocks while adding a fine "mist" of bubbles, but other types of real and false stones can be used as a cover.
Contact a landscape contractor service to discuss other options for yard water features. To learn more, contact a company like Colourscape Inc.