Plan Swimming Pond - Important Notes on Permit, Fish & Care

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A swimming pond is not even built fast. Without proper planning, the project can quickly fail and, in the worst case, even lead to heavy fines.

Plan swimming pond

Swimming ponds combine the beauty and ambiance of a pond or biotope with the benefits of a swimming pool. The natural alternative to swimming pools cleans itself and does not rely on chlorine and other chemical agents.

At the same time, of course, there are some things to consider when creating the pond, which are essential for a long-term intact pond. Those who pay attention to some important things before construction saves a lot of time and unnecessary work.

Is an approval necessary?

Many peoples do not know that ponds often need a permit. However, because unreported ponds can lead to cautions and fines, you should have your pond approved in advance. This is necessary in most federal states from a depth of 1.5 meters and a total volume of 100 cubic meters. Here it depends heavily on the state. The experts from MCM Systems have compiled a table for this which legal bases are available in the individual federal states and what additional legal regulations must be observed during construction.

In many areas, for example in neighboring Austria, even very small ponds need to be registered. If you build a pond there in a local area, it must be registered immediately. Especially with swimming ponds you should play it safe and inform yourself in advance.

Construction of the pond

Plan swimming pond - construction

The pond should be constructed over several steps so that it is in an ecological balance at different temperatures and weather conditions. This is especially important in warmer temperatures when the lower levels protect the pond from algal blooms, oxygen deficiency, nitrogen and phosphorus increases. So it makes sense, especially in warmer areas, for example southern Germany, to dig a pond depth of 2 meters or more.

With larger ponds, it can easily happen that the laid pond liner gets cracks or holes through pointed stones. To avoid this, raise the pond at least 10 centimeters deeper than originally planned and then pour out a layer of about 10 centimeters high with small pebbles. This protects the pond liner and also looks more natural. Such work can be very time consuming and exhausting. If you want to save yourself the work, you can also outsource them. On portals such as Renovero you will find qualified craftsmen with pond-building experience without a long search. In the meantime, you can then deal with other things, such as pond technology.

Technology in the garden pond: Is a water filter necessary?

In principle, garden ponds require no technology as long as the nutrient concentration remains at a moderate level. The larger the pond, the easier the water remains in balance. If you have a small pond, it may help to install a filter system that is activated when needed. Especially at hot temperatures, this can reduce the algae. In addition, toxins, suspended solids and excess fish food are filtered out of the water.

Fish in the swimming pond

Plan swimming pond - fish

Fish and water dwellers are often a challenge, especially because they can easily bring a balanced body of water through feces and leftover food. In particular, when the water already tends to rapid algae growth and lack of oxygen due to warm temperatures.

Less is more when buying fish should be the motto to guarantee the health of the pond can. Especially because juveniles often multiply their size in the coming years, one should calculate generously. Experts from garden pond advisers recommend planning for a fish with a full length of 25 centimeters around 600 liters of water to be on the safe side.

Basically: Fish are not part of the ecological cycle of a pond, which is necessary for a long-term balance. Rather, fish are a risk factor that can easily be fatal. This is especially the case with smaller ponds.

The more fish in the pond, the more technology is needed to keep the water in balance. You should also pay attention to the diet of the pond inhabitants. For example, koi or goldfish like to eat the underwater plants, which as a result can not displace rising algae. Other species, such as carp or certain Koirassen, also eat up the algae, creating an opaque green in the water that makes it difficult to observe fish from the outside.

Danger of over-fertilization

Probably the biggest danger with ponds is over-fertilization. It increases significantly when fish are kept. By fish, algae growth and fish food, the water is too rich in nutrients and threatens to tip.Keeping a lot of fish in a limited sized pond is especially dangerous. Then, about 10-20 percent of the water should be changed weekly so as not to keep too many nutrients in the water.

Proper location of the pond

Plan swimming pond - location and location

Where do you want to make your garden pond? The water is often the showpiece of the garden and is therefore often dug in particularly clear areas. However, it is important not to let too little and not too much sun shine on the pond. Five hours of sunshine are optimal for plant growth, but it should not be much more. Sun protection for the pond may therefore make sense.

Important: However, rooted roots with hard roots should not be allowed to thrive near the pond as they can be a threat to the pond liner.

Pond Care: The perfect pond rarely runs on autopilot

Having a pond means assuming responsibility and providing appropriate care. Especially when fish are involved. This includes regularly checking water values: what is the pH of the water? How much phosphorus and nitrogen trioxide are found in the water? What is the total hardness? On which individual water values ​​it depends and how these should turn out, explains the garden pond professional Tetra in its advisor.

Even when the technology is completely abandoned, there is always work to be done - for example, a sprawling aquatic plant can quickly fill large parts of the pond. In this case, you need to intervene quickly and remove them.

Even in winter you are often confronted with challenges. So you have to make sure that the swimming pond remains ice-free, so that enough oxygen remains for the pond inhabitants. Rustic then part of the ice can be chopped off. Alternatively, you can also install an ice guard.

An air pump or an oxidizer for the oxygen supply can also have a positive effect.


A swimming pond in your own garden can be very enjoyable and is basically low maintenance. The interaction of water and the right plants around it is especially nice to look at. Nevertheless, one should not underestimate the effort. Especially in extreme temperatures, the pond must be kept in mind. If you also keep fish in the swimming pond, the pond's ecosystem is much more sensitive, and the use of technology such as air pumps and water filters is particularly recommended. Overall, building a swimming pond is not rocket science, but it takes time and effort to make sure you enjoy your swimming pond.

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