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Garden Pond Leaking!

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  • Garden Pond Leaking!

    Nestled in the deepest hollow of my woods is a small spring-fed
    stream which, cascading gently down a eight foot stone cut, creates a
    beautiful little waterfall near which I have established a meditation
    circle. Between this circle, which was erected upon a slightly
    elevated patch of ground, and the basin of the waterfall is a
    area of soil level with the watertable. As you can imagine, this
    spot has a tendency to get very soft and muddy, so I recently
    decided to dig it into a reflecting pond. After digging down
    through a foot of mud, I hit a solid clay substrate which I pick-axed
    through for another foot. Using the removed clay, I shored up
    the walls of the soon-to-be pond, sealing it about 10 inches
    thick. As the pond filled with water, I built the walls up another
    foot above the water table, leveling the pond surface with the
    elevated circle plot. In all, the whole operation was pretty
    successful, as I now have an 6 foot by 10 foot kidney shaped
    pond instead of a mud pit next to my circle. However, seeing as
    the half nearest the circle is actually above the water-table,
    I'm having a hard time containing seepage through the soil.
    I've routed a portion of the stream into the far end of the
    pond, and diverted a outlet over a stone dam at the lowest point
    at the near end, creating a steady flow in and out- which seems
    to have helped the pooling a bit, but the soil nearest the circle
    is still getting soft. I'd like to hear any suggestions on how
    to bank the inside of the pond, or the upper surface of the
    circle-plot, to stop this seepage. I've thought of using bentonite,
    but it's expensive. I'd like to avoid any plastic or PVC liners,
    as I plan on doing some water-gardening. Anyone have any ideas?



    I kneel in thanksgiving before thy alter, O Gloried Ones, and sing thee praise!
    Truely thou art worthy of devotion!
    Thy blessings surround and sustain me! I am filled with thy virtues, and rejoice:
    Truely my life is but testament to thy glory!
    Blessed be, above and below, to all, to one, and to Thee!

  • #2
    If you can buy/find natural clay, you can use that.
    It must be puddled; i.e. combined with water, not dry. Oddly enough, when puddled it will be water proof :D
    I'm sure if you look up "puddled clay" on google, you could find some instructions

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks, I've got plenty of of it- the whole soil substrate is actually
      a fantastically dense natural clay. It's holding up really well,
      except for that one area where the pressure builds up, forcing
      the water to permeate it. Perhaps I can build that side in
      a bit deeper, lining it with another 3-4 inches, bringing the
      total clay depth to more than a foot? I'm actually hoping that
      in time, the finer suspended particles will work themselves
      into the soil and plug it up a bit... but until then, I guess
      I've got some more digging to do. I was hoping I wouldn't have
      to drain it to solve the problem... there's going to be some
      very unhappy frogs if I do!
      Bentonite is a special clay which absorbs something like 20
      times it's weight in water, swelling an equal amount in the
      process... it's used to seal dams and waterways, as it can
      just be sprinked onto the surface, after which it is drawn into
      the leaky pores and expands to seal it tight. Unfortunately,
      it's only sold in 1000 pound lots. More than I can use! lol
      Last edited by asamananara; September 27th, 2004, 05:34 AM.



      I kneel in thanksgiving before thy alter, O Gloried Ones, and sing thee praise!
      Truely thou art worthy of devotion!
      Thy blessings surround and sustain me! I am filled with thy virtues, and rejoice:
      Truely my life is but testament to thy glory!
      Blessed be, above and below, to all, to one, and to Thee!

      Comment


      • #4
        Ahhh I seeeee!!

        Might be worth posting this in the Green Room? I think thats where most of the garden questions usually get answered...

        Comment


        • #5
          Yeah, I tried that a while ago... only got one or two responses.
          (see "similar threads" below). Perhaps more handyman types
          will read through this spiffy new "Pagan Spaces" forum than
          the green room?



          I kneel in thanksgiving before thy alter, O Gloried Ones, and sing thee praise!
          Truely thou art worthy of devotion!
          Thy blessings surround and sustain me! I am filled with thy virtues, and rejoice:
          Truely my life is but testament to thy glory!
          Blessed be, above and below, to all, to one, and to Thee!

          Comment


          • #6
            Fingers xx :D
            Or you could try and google for a specialist garden message board...

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by asamananara
              Thanks, I've got plenty of of it- the whole soil substrate is actually
              a fantastically dense natural clay. It's holding up really well,
              except for that one area where the pressure builds up, forcing
              the water to permeate it. Perhaps I can build that side in
              a bit deeper, lining it with another 3-4 inches, bringing the
              total clay depth to more than a foot? I'm actually hoping that
              in time, the finer suspended particles will work themselves
              into the soil and plug it up a bit... but until then, I guess
              I've got some more digging to do. I was hoping I wouldn't have
              to drain it to solve the problem... there's going to be some
              very unhappy frogs if I do!
              Nothing worse than unhappy frogs! They'll squat outside your kitchen window giving you accusing looks and chanting gribbit.

              Maybe it's a simple as needing to puddle it more than you have already. Clay ponds are buggers to do but once in should last for centuries.

              gwyn eich byd

              Ffred
              Ticfa Tلlcenn
              Tar muir mercenn
              a thrي thollcenn,
              a chrann crombcenn.

              Canfaid mيchrلbud
              a méis ي n-airthuir a thige;
              fris-gérat a muinter uile:
              Amén, Amén.

              Comment


              • #8
                Have you thought of using some stone and concret. I realize this means draining the pond or building some sort of dam near the area you are working (and not drain the entire pond) on but it could solve your problem. It could be made to look completely natural as well.

                Just a thought! Let us know how it comes along.

                Mike

                Comment


                • #9
                  That would be great, except I'd have to haul the four hundred
                  pounds of concrete over a half-mile long, winding forest path,
                  and would then have to backfill in the soil for planting. It
                  would definately work, though!
                  I've actually fixed this problem, for the most part. The
                  solution was talc. Pulverized, cosmetic-grade talc; eight
                  pounds scattered over the surface of the water. This was
                  suggested to me on a landscaping board, and seems to have
                  worked. The powder is drawn into the pores of the clay, and
                  expands as it absorbs water. Within an hour of applying the
                  talc, the water had cleared, and I no longer noticed any unwanted
                  draining. Within three days, the previously swamped soil around
                  my meditation circle had dried. Pretty nifty, but the guy who
                  told me this trick said I may have to reapply a few more times.
                  Thanks, for all of your suggestions- I hope the talc will be
                  enough to prevent me having to take more serious actions.
                  Last edited by asamananara; October 4th, 2004, 01:52 AM.



                  I kneel in thanksgiving before thy alter, O Gloried Ones, and sing thee praise!
                  Truely thou art worthy of devotion!
                  Thy blessings surround and sustain me! I am filled with thy virtues, and rejoice:
                  Truely my life is but testament to thy glory!
                  Blessed be, above and below, to all, to one, and to Thee!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yay!

                    When do we get some photos though, asa?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      When I have the capacity to post pictures again.
                      My home PC is dead, and has been for months. Apparently, computers
                      don't like being rained on. Fortunately, roof leaks are easier
                      to fix than pond leaks are.
                      I've been limited to posting on my work terminal, which is
                      an antiquated ASCII machine. I'm getting really sick of seeing
                      nothing but green text!



                      I kneel in thanksgiving before thy alter, O Gloried Ones, and sing thee praise!
                      Truely thou art worthy of devotion!
                      Thy blessings surround and sustain me! I am filled with thy virtues, and rejoice:
                      Truely my life is but testament to thy glory!
                      Blessed be, above and below, to all, to one, and to Thee!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by asamananara
                        When I have the capacity to post pictures again.
                        My home PC is dead, and has been for months. Apparently, computers
                        don't like being rained on. Fortunately, roof leaks are easier
                        to fix than pond leaks are.
                        I've been limited to posting on my work terminal, which is
                        an antiquated ASCII machine. I'm getting really sick of seeing
                        nothing but green text!
                        yeah, you're missing out on my funky dancing cow avatar!

                        Comment

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