A Watery World

No garden is complete without the sight and sound of water. Great for toe-dipping on a hot sunny day, this mini-pond is too small for fish but a welcome watering spot for thirsty birds. Any large container can be used to make a mini-pond, as long as it is watertight. A toy-tidy, like this one, is ideal.


  • Large, wide container
  • Gravel
  • Lead from a wine bottle top
  • Flower pot


  • 2 aquatic plants such as golden sedge and monkey flower
  • Strands of oxygenating weed
  • Small floating plants
such as water lettuce 
and floating ferns

1: Put a layer of gravel in the bottom of a large, wide container and fill with water almost to the top.

Picture of Patio Planting

2: Lower the aquatic plants (which should be in net pots when you buy them) gently into the water around the edge.

Garden Planning

3: Bend a piece of lead around the base of pieces of oxygenating weed to weigh them down. Pot the bunch into a flower pot and put a layer of gravel on the surface.

Garden Planning

4: Lower the pot into the mini-pond, then add a few floating plants. Sink the pond into a hole in the garden so that it keeps cool.

Gardener’s Tip: Keep shallow containers in a semi-shady area to avoid excess evaporation. Plant up an adjoining mix of tulips and alliums for a spring and early summer display. Plant in Spring.