Friday, March 9, 2012

swimming ponds

One thing I've hinted at before that I want for our homestead is a pond. While I don't think a large pond meant for livestock watering needs makes much sense considering the lay of our land, I can't stop thinking about how awesome it would be to have a small water feature that's meant just for us. Something that we (and maybe even the dogs) can cool off in during the summer that also enhances the landscape. Set a few plastic chairs in the shallow part and read a good book drinking Coronas on a hot summer day. Bliss!

In researching small ponds, I came to discover what they call natural swimming pools, or swimming ponds. Basically, you have a water feature that includes a deep(er) area for swimming and a connected shallow area that is filled with bog plants that clean the water naturally. No chemicals, looks lovely, and has a functional purpose, to boot.

I found a few images that are kinda what I have in mind:

[ image credit ]

[ image credit ]

Since I couldn't find exactly what I envisioned on the interwebs, I threw a drawing together in Sketchup:

Kinda like a giant hot tub. Except not hot and not a tub. But good to sit in anyway.

Idyllic, no?

As back breaking as it might seem, I think this could be shoveled out over a few weekends and not require a backhoe.

So the darker part is the swimming (really, more a soaking) area, and the lighter ring around it would be the bog where the plants grow to filter the water. I threw some koi fish in there, too, for shits and giggles.

There's Jay testing the water to make sure it's safe for me and Clyde Dog to swim in (and looking extra cool in the process). Clyde Dog would no doubt also sit with me quite contentedly while I drink Mexican beer and read Dean Koontz novels and glossy farm magazines and soak my feet (and possibly take a nap). Barker would probably not be too interested, and they didn't have an American Bulldog model in Sketchup, so I didn't include him. It will definitely need to be fenced off from the rogue chicken gang, though, because swimming in bird poop is not my idea of a relaxing good time.

Location-wise, I think an ideal spot might be the bermed area above the cabin. It sounds frightening to have a body of water positioned above our abode, but this spot gets a lot of runoff during storms and there's actually an existing ditch that I could connect the swimming pond to, making it all the easier to fill it and keep it full.

Like this:

You can sorta make out the
north/south ditch just to the right...

This area has lots of nice shade in the summer. Yes, yes I think a swimming pond is quite in order. And if you come help me dig it, I'll let you swim/soak in it anytime you want. REALLY. help me

Sayonara, fishies, enjoy the weekend!

~ Mitsy

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