Swimming Pond: Planning, Construction & Cleaning

What do you think of when you hear the word swimming pond? Even if you have never heard this word before or have never looked at it, you can imagine something under it: a combination of a fish pond and a swimming pool. In this entry we want to explain the principle of such a swimming pond and, above all, go into more detail about planning and cleaning.

General Information About the Swimming Pond

The swimming pond is a mixture of biotope and a swimming pool. The former is more of an aesthetic design element, which makes the garden look original and natural. Since the water in such a biotope is not chemically cleaned but remains clear by itself through biological self-cleaning, there is not much work to do with the pond.

The swimming pool, on the other hand, is more for the more active. Here you can let off steam, enjoy hot days in a relaxed manner, and regularly clean a mostly light blue pool so that it stays that way in terms of color. The disadvantage of the swimming pool is the chemical club: This is needed to keep the water free of algae and bacteria.

But what if you want the best of both worlds? Quite simply: a swimming pond!

Such a combination of biotope and pool creates new common habitat for people, animals, and plants: People can both enjoy nature and have fun in the water, where, depending on the pond style, fish and other pond animals cavort. The skin-friendly, clean water does not need any chlorine, it cleans itself almost entirely without help (more on that later).

General advantages over a normal pool are lower care and maintenance costs, the complete lack of chemicals, lower annual costs, and year-round usability.

The Planning

The pond should be around 2m deep at the deepest point. Such a body of water is more stable because natural influences do not change the water values ​​so quickly. The water in the lower layers is also cooler in summer and offers double the refreshment; In addition, it can also bind oxygen better, which benefits the water level and the pond inhabitants. Of course, such a large pond creates more excavation, which can make construction more expensive and also makes basic cleaning more time-consuming after the winter.

When choosing the best location, you are of course dependent on your property: In general, you should plan for the wind direction, partial shade from plants or buildings, and leaf fall. Sufficient edge distance to the neighboring property is also recommended.

The Structure

The division of a swimming pond – regardless of whether it is a large water surface or spatially separated zones – generally consists of a swimming and regeneration zone. The swimming zone is the area where you can make your moves, splash around and relax. The water is accordingly deep here, so that swimming fun is in the foreground. The regeneration zone, also known as the treatment or shallow water zone, is more useful and should take up between 30 – 70% of the total area. This proportion depends on the intensity of use, the tanning conditions, and the nutritional content of the water used. Aquatic and marsh plants grow in this area to purify the water. Together with the microorganisms that live there, they free the water from none and other pollutants so that it can then be returned to the swimming area. A swimming pond is a circulatory system in which the cleaning is largely taken over by nature.

The Natural Pond Cleaning

The nice thing about a natural pool is the lack of chlorine and other chemical agents that make the water “clean” but unnaturally chemical. Biological cleaning plays a major role here. There are 5 points that together make an ideal natural filter system.

First of all, the bank substrate is to be mentioned, which forms the subsoil 30 to 70 cm thick in the shallow water zone. This removes nutrients from the water by colonizing bacteria. Furthermore, repositioning plants are settled in the shallow water zone. There are different plants with species-specific effects on water quality. Their composition should be adapted to the nature of the water fed in and the expected number of bathers. The circulation of the water is also very important. For this purpose, a pump system can, for example, let the water flow through a natural stone stream, in which the water is enriched with oxygen, which is good for the level of the pond volume.

The fourth point is made up of “planktonic filter feeders”: These are tiny organisms that find optimal living conditions in a well-designed swimming pond. They make a significant contribution to keeping water clean: this ideally prevents algae from developing. The last point is made up of other animals that are useful for the swimming pond and all of which make a contribution. Water snails, for example, eat algae from the foil or stone surface, dragonfly larvae prevent increased mosquitoes, and crayfish or mussels remove organic material from the bottom.

Required Technology

Most swimming ponds, however, cannot do without technology. Especially with intensively used ponds, it is advisable to support the biological filter system with a technical one, but not to replace it. The works of filtering include decimating germs, absorbing nutrients (to prevent algae growth), and converting toxins.

First, a surface skimmer sucks organic material such as parts of plants and fallen leaves from the surface of the water so that they do not the first sink and form nutrients (danger of algae!). The water is then pumped through a shaft by a pump into the shallow water area, where it runs through mechanical fine filtration. The water then returns to the swimming zone through the gravel scattered in the regeneration zone.

The technology presented here is just one example of the different swimming pond variants. It is important to adapt the technology to the use and your individual pond.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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