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Jargon Busters

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Terms and phrases used by Water Scenes (water feature design)

Formal design: This style uses straight edges and cermetrical shapes and can include any number of water feature statues, sculptures, fountains and cascade center pieces.

Naturalistic style: These water features are designed to mirror nature’s surroundings, and give an illusion that they have formed naturally. They often use locally sourced stone blended with a wide array of pond plants, bog plants, streams and cascades.

Modern design: Incorporating new and abstract ideas with classical and modern materials whilst taking advantage of technological advances. These water features are very of the moment and quite often timeless.

Water features: garden or office feature designed to incorporate water into a landscaped area using various type of building materials; this is usually accompanied by a small water pump which circulates water to give your water feature added dimensions.

Fish ponds: Pool designed using specialist aquatic landscape equipment i.e.; pond filters, ultra violate lights and pond pumps to create an environment suitable for keeping koi, gold fish, orf, and many other aquatic flora and forna.

Koi Ponds: Large pools with large pond filter and capable of keeping koi carp these popular fish ponds are often designed with elements of Japanese garden design and culture.

Rills: These long and thin architectural water features can be level to the ground or raised with water flowing either into the water feature or be focused to flow away from the water feature. Rills are very versatile garden pools as they can be used as water garden features in large and small areas.

Raised ponds: Water features, ponds and even natural swimming pools can be raised and add a new dimension to any garden design feature. Raised ponds are usually built with bricks or concrete blocks but there are many alternatives.

Water gardens: We consider that water gardens consists of two or more pools, water features, fountains, waterfalls and cascades either combined or situated in different areas of your garden design. They use aquatic plants and conventional garden plants to create a water garden design that gives water feature prospective form multiple areas and view points in the garden design.

Natural pools: Commonly called eco ponds these garden water features rely on plants for their ponds ecological balance, they contain no pond pumps or filters to give it good water clarity and often have a natural edge.Bog gardens: Many plants require a constant supply of water in order to survive which causes a problem in some gardens. Bog gardens are lined areas of your garden that are then filled with soil and planted with moister loving plants. This enables the plant enthusiast to grow a larger variety garden plants.

Natural swimming pools: Large swimming pools free from chemical treatments. These pools use natural aquatic plants that absorb pollution and treat water quality. This is also aided through the process of natural biological filtration. Natural swimming pools consist of two areas the first being the plant zone or regeneration zone. This area is the shallower of the two. The second area is known as the swim zone, and is usually equal in surface area proportion but has a greater depth for the use of swimming and bathing.

Natural pool conversions: Process of converting a conventional swimming pool design into a fully functional natural swimming pool by either increasing the swimming pool design area or decreasing the swim zone of the swimming pool design.

Water feature re-design and restoration: Partial or complete dismantling of an existing garden feature to either bring back its water garden design quality or correct any problems that may have occurred during the water feature design and construction.

Pond lighting: Small lights that can be used under water and around the fish pond or water feature. Often low voltage but also available in high voltage versions for more spectacular water features.

Ultra violet light (UV): Electrical light unit used in fish pond filtration primarily the UV unit will rid your water features and water gardens of the green water algae that gives pond water a green pea soup like appearance. They also aid in the sterilization of harmful organisms.

Types of pumps:

Dirty water pond pump: This type of pond pump can be used on water features, fish ponds, waterfalls, pond filters and natural swimming pools. These pond pumps are particularly useful as they require a minimal amount of maintenance.

Fountain pump: These pond pumps give unlimited opportunities to add any type of fountain head, you can choose from a huge array of water jets that leap from the pond surface. Also semi useful for water features, fish ponds, waterfalls and pond filters with a low fish stock density, I would venture a word of warning as these pumps can be quite high maintenance to keep it running at its optimum speed.


Gravity feed: The most well known type of pond filter. These box filters can be used on any type of water feature. They keep the water clear and clean of waste. They can be quite hard to disguise but are easy to maintain.

Pressure filter: These are sealed units which can be easily disguised and maintained.

Gravel Filter: This type of filter is situated on the floor of the pond and uses pipes and gravel to filter the pond or water feature.

Pre filter: Situated before the inlet section of the pond pump these small filters prevent the pump from becoming clogged up with debris. Pre filters do not aid water clarity or filtration of ponds, water features and water gardens.