How to Landscape a Fish Pond


For those who want a truly special centerpiece, landscaping a fish pond with such features as rocks, plants and even garden waterfalls, can really make the pond stand out. While there are certain ways in which fish ponds must be built, such as on a level piece of ground, there are also plenty of options that go along with them. Still, each feature costs money and you must decide how much you are willing to spend. In the end, the expenses associated with your landscaping choices might be ongoing, so consider these future expenses as well.

Landscaping a Fish Pond

Step 1

Decide where you want to locate the fish pond because this will affect the choices you make in landscaping. Ponds generally prefer full sun and planting under trees should be avoided, if at all possible. In the fall, this could lead to a constant battle of keeping leaves out of the pond.

Step 2

Consider a garden waterfall very early in the process. The inclusion of a waterfall could involve grading and moving a significant amount of earth. Therefore, building of this feature must be done near the beginning so that other things can be suitably planned around it.

Step 3

Choose a design scheme, or a combination of schemes. Most individuals will choose rocks or plants to adorn the edges of their pond. Some might choose a little bit of both, perhaps creating a path to the water but allowing areas for vegetation as well.

Step 4

Landscape the pond design before putting in any fish. Working around a pond means there will be debris and possibly harmful substances that get into the pond, so it is always best to finish any landscaping project before introducing the fish.

Step 5

Make sure any water plants are compatible with fish, especially if you are going to stock koi. It is generally recommended to include water plants or fish, but not both. However, if you decide to use both, make sure the plants or not toxic, or considered delicacies, by the fish species you choose.

Step 6

Add fish to the garden pond only after the heavy landscaping is completed and the water has been suitably conditioned. If you condition the water the day you finish the majority of the landscaping, fish can be added in three days.

Things You'll Need

  • Pond
  • Rocks
  • Plants


  • Pond Planning
  • Koi and Ponds
  • California Waterscapes

Who Can Help

  • Choosing Garden Pond Plants
  • Pond Plant Ideas
  • Garden Pond Fish
Keywords: pond design, garden waterfall, garden pond, landscaping project

About this Author

Ken Black is a freelance writer and a staff writer for The Times Republican in Central Iowa. He has written extensively on a variety of topics, including business, politics, family life and travel.