By Nikki Phipps
(Author of The Bulb-o-licious Garden)
Ponds are not only a welcome addition to the landscape, but they can also be attractive features indoors. They are easy to create, easy to maintain and can be tailored to fit your needs.
Construction of Indoor Water Ponds
The only difference between an indoor pond and an outdoor pond is size and location. Indoor ponds can be as small or as large as space allows. The size of the pond and its function will determine its overall construction. A waterfall pond can also be constructed.
An indoor pond can be prefabricated or custom made. You can also purchase plans or build your own pond frame. Prefabricated ponds and waterfall kits include everything you need and are available in various shapes and sizes, making it easy to find the one best suited for your needs.
Indoor ponds can be made from nearly anything including rubber containers, plastic pots or storage bins, toddler swimming pools, glass aquariums, etc. You should avoid using metal or wooden containers unless you use a liner. Basins or plastic washtubs make exceptional choices for smaller indoor ponds.
Piled up stones and plants can be incorporated along the edges of the pond to help conceal the container.
How to Create a Miniature Pond for Indoors
Prior to building indoor ponds, you’ll need to determine its location. Due to weight issues, any pond over 50 gallons should be placed on the lowest level of the house, like the basement.
Place your container or prefabricated pond where you want it. Stack clean stones along the edges to build up the sides. The top row of stones should cover the edge of the container to help conceal it. Add a small submersible pump (about 75 gph, depending on size) to keep the water moving.
Then begin adding some houseplants (or artificial plantings) along the outer edges of the pond. Popular choices include peace lilies and pothos. However, nearly any plant that enjoys moist indoor environments can be used. Before setting these plants in place, be sure to repot them with clay or sand soil. You can place potted plants in tiers, with some outside the water and others only partially in the water, which can be accomplished by using stones or overturned pots to keep the top of the container above the water.
If the pond is in the basement, you may want to include a pond heater as well. You can also add dechlorinator or bleach to help keep it clean unless you intend on having an indoor goldfish pond.
Indoor Goldfish Pond
If you put fish in the indoor pond, it will require a filter to make sure the water stays clean and clear. An aquarium filter is suitable for most indoor ponds. Also, if you have an outdoor pond, you may want to add some of that water to your indoor pond.
Goldfish usually work best in the indoor pond and should be fed minimally. Fish in an indoor pond may sometimes become jumpy; therefore, it may be a good idea to either place netting around the pond or build higher edges.
Indoor Pond Problems
The biggest problem with indoor water ponds is keeping them clean. Indoor ponds should have more frequent water changes than outdoor ones. Indoor ponds should receive frequent water changing. Depending on the size of your pond or if fish are included, this can be done on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. In addition, indoor ponds lack the benefits of natural sunlight, so additional light will be needed in the form of metal halides or fluorescent lights.