I've always wanted a house near some body of water. Since our current home is in a subdivision and our house is situated in what I think is geographically a canyon, my husband Jared and I had to get creative. So we created what we call The Tuttle Aquatic Gardens.
That's just a fancy name for a pond made out of a bathtub that Jared dragged out of the woods behind my uncle's house.
If you'd like to attempt your own bathtub pond, here's how!
1. Find a bathtub.
I have dreams of recreating this pond with an ornate clawfoot tub, but in the meantime, we used a standard metal tub.
If you have trouble finding one, I'd try asking someone in the construction business. Houses are getting remodeled all the time, and those fixtures have to end up somewhere! Or… you could always check behind your uncle's house, because that worked for us.
2. Get a pond pump and filter.
We bought ours at one of the big box construction stores. This is the priciest part of the whole enterprise. We like to be thrifty, so we used coupons and online codes to get the best deal. In hindsight, we also should have looked on Craigslist.
We DIYed our own filter. All you need is a small storage box and some washable air filters. To learn how make your own pond filter click here.
3. Figure out where to put your pond.
This part was tricky for us. I told y'all that we live in a canyon, and that isn't a lie. We honestly have about 150 square feet of flat space on our property, and all of it is too far from the house to run electricity to the pump. We decided to put our little pond on the back deck, so we can enjoy it. Jared recently rebuilt the deck and made sure to add extra bracing for support.
4. Fill your tub and add plants.
This is the best part! Again, we bought the majority of our water plants from a big box store, but we should have checked Craigslist. (Note to self: ALWAYS check Craigslist first!)
Our water garden has water hyacinth, a water-lily, some water lettuce, some irises, and some royal blue pickerel rush. Some of these plants multiply really fast, which is great! In fact, we started with one water hyacinth and one water lettuce, and in a month we had seven hyacinths and 13 lettuce! These water plants are also great cover for any fish.
If you'd like to add fish, make sure that your water is safe for your fish by testing the water's ph levels, and be sure you don't have too many fish in a small space. As I understand, you should have a gallon of water for each inch of fish. I am not an expert on fish, so if you are concerned, please ask a professional. Comets, goldfish, and some small koi are perfect in this kind of pond.
It is so relaxing to go out and sit by the pond and listen to the water. Add some Christmas lights for ambiance and enjoy your hard work!