With plenty of time during lockdown I gave the ‘nature pond’ a bit of a tidy up. The pond was originally built by my dad about fourteen years ago and it has stood the test of time. With the liner leaking and becoming cracked after years of use it was time for a revamp. Originally it had a pump fed stream but I have guessed that that is where the water had been escaping from. This wasn’t ideal at the best of times and with the water being constantly pumped out the pond kept on emptying. As you can see the pond looked very good for wildlife back when it was first built.
My plan was to use some of the ferns that were around the garden to plant up the edges and breaking up the border. With the garden having had quite the change over the past two years it was time to give the ferns their final home. At first they were very small dry sprouts and I didn’t have too much hope for them. I recently relined the pond meaning I changed over the plastic sheeting material that holds the water. I also changed the waterfall to be more of a decorative rock canyon with a pool of water at the base top allow for water loving plants such as ferns and water cress to thrive.
As you can see below the ferns really took off. We experienced a pretty good heat wave a few weeks ago so I was unsure whether the plants would make it it temperatures up to 25 degrees but with sun must come rain, or at least here in the UK. The rain was welcomed with open arms by the ferns and they soon began to unfurl. I was really surprised at how quickly these little earthy stumps transformed into a luscious green plant in a matter of weeks. The small rock pool was also bursting with plant life and provides a home for some of the smaller inhabitants of pond.
The first inhabitants to take an interest is the newly designed water source were the pond skaters ! These top little predators are usually the first to investigate and will take advantage of small insects falling into the pond, where they speed in for the kill. You may just be able to see the stabbing mouth piece tucked just under the eyes, almost like a sheathed knife.
The next to visit were the local population of Common Red damselflies. I have seen them courting and mating so hopefully they have laid their eggs in the pond. The larval stages of this insect are top predators in the pond and will hopefully keep down the mosquito population.
I really love the curious expression on these damselflies and after saving this one after it had fallen in the pond, I got a little wave of thank you for the help !