Wednesday, October 14, 2009

pondering over ponds

I am presently looking after this pond for a client who lives in Canada . She is on the  island 2-3 times a year and comes in by private jet. The architect who designed the house, wanted a modern spatial look for the pond to correspond with the house. Well she instructed that only one water lily was required. The person who was looking after the pond at that time bought the water lily from me and installed it. 

Several months later I got a call from the house manager requesting that I come to meet the owner of the house to discuss the pond. When I arrived there I looked for the lone water lily. It  was near death due to lack of care and  I almost cried. The owner a very pleasant lady  who is a film director by profession, was very concerned about the state of the pond. She said that she wanted more plant coverage  to stop the water from going green.
I realized that she had Koi in the pond. I told her that normally water lilies and Koi don't go together because they are natural vegetarians and one day will revert to eating the plants that are in the pond.  I explained  that by placing large flat stones around the plant base will help them from being uprooted, but I cannot stop them from eating the leaves.  I suggested that if the Koi are fed regularly that will help. 

She told me to put as many plants that will be needed and she will take the chance with the Koi. I was also concerned about the amount of sunlight the pond got during the day with the shadows that were cast by the overhead roof and building.  I placed the  lilies that needed the least amount of sunlight  in the shaded areas (minimum of 3 hrs) whilst  the ones that needed the most amount of light (between 4-6hrs) in the open areas. 

A total of 10 water lilies were installed. So far it has been nearly 8 months and just a few leaves have been nibbled on.  One day the same architect stopped by and exclaimed  how beautiful the pond looked with all the water lilies in bloom. Remember this was the same person who was insisting on a minimalist look ....ha! Take that madam! Minimalist my big fat .....toe!


  1. How beautiful! I love your ponds, silly architect he should have listened to you in the first place.

  2. What a nice pond with water lilies! The koi did not eat them? I guess feeding them regularly helps :-) Water lilies are so pretty and the flowers look so vibrant. I like these flowers better than the kois he he...

  3. Lovely looking pond! Great work, Helen. Glad you got the better of him.

  4. These kois look very happy and healthy. I think that kois give life to the pond because they are always moving. I just love the way they swim towards me whenever I go near. I also love the way they like to jump up from the water and make a splish-splash sound. They are very therapeutic to watch.

  5. Helen, I would like to ask you another question. Have you done any post about the lotus flower/plant? I can't seem to find it here. I really like the lotus very much.

  6. Pond and Koi, i love it.

    Leider funktioniert der Translater nicht?????? Mein English ist sehr begrenzt, leider.

    liebe Grüße Dörte

  7. I love this story! It is so frustrating working with minimalists in regards to the garden. I am glad you proved to her that she was wrong about the water lilies.

  8. is your pond doing? Architects must understand that they are not gardeners.

    Stephanie glad that you like the water lilies more than the koi :-)

    Autumn Belle....I used to keep Koi in my ponds at home and for several years they were ok. Then one day we came and found the pond in a mess! Leaves were bitten off and chewed, and plants were uprooted. So we got rid of the Koi and have put in commets in. They are just as pretty as the Koi but they do not damage the plants. You are correct I haven't post about lotus, this is because they are temperamental and goes dormant. I will do a post on them soon.

    Dorte....I will have to get the translator. There is one on this blog.

    AZplantlady......I get very annoyed when these professionals start believing they are professionals in everything.

  9. Helen, now I begin to see your point about the kois. No wonder people have separate ponds for kois and lotuses/water lilies in their gardens. I only realise this after you pointed it out to me. Yes! Thank you so much. Wishing you a great weekend ahead.

  10. Helen, you make me yearn for a lily pond of my own. I wish you lived closer so I could consult you on starting one. This one looks lovely and dreamy! I bet your client is thanking her lucky stars that she found you :)

  11. Autumn are a wise one. Many people think that they can change the habits of fish and plants and they had to learn to hard way.

    Sunita can have a pond built with wood and drop a liner in. I have one in my garden I had made for a show. to be honest Sunita I am getting tired of doing ponds, however I will continue do it until I can find something else to do. They help pay for my garden help, my house helper and gives me some pocket money for garden stuff.

  12. Are you still looking after the pond? Loved the pond, I was an interior decorator for many years...some of these types have amazingly stupid ideas...ha ha..the weeding looks good, and I want some of that lime juice.


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