Ponds and Water Gardening forum: Water Gardens in the Desert

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Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
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LizDTM
May 10, 2017 9:22 PM CST
There are stores here for water gardening, so I assume it's possible. I want to turn my above ground jacuzzi into a water garden with an eventual aquaponic set up to happen down the line. I'm having my pool guy quote what he'd charge to drain it and cap off the jets, and I'm gathering information. So if you are in a hot/dry climate and have a water garden, please give me some tips!
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Greenhouse Sempervivums Bromeliad
Adeniums Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals Xeriscape Garden Art Plumerias
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plantmanager
May 10, 2017 9:28 PM CST
Liz, about 10 years ago one of the water garden stores sponsored a water garden tour. It included about 10 residential water gardens around the valley. There were some really wonderful ones! Some were tiny ponds, and others included waterfalls and little rivers running around the yard. Many of them had foggers in them, which really kept the yard cooler. At the time we took pics, but I'm not finding them. I'm afraid we've had too many computers over the years, and not everything always gets saved or transferred.
It's very doable, and I know you'd love it if you don't use your jacuzzi.
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Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 11, 2017 10:12 PM CST
Thanks Karen. I'm figuring that the insulation in the sides of the jacuzzi would keep water temp down. I haven't heard back from my pool guy yet, darn it.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Greenhouse Sempervivums Bromeliad
Adeniums Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals Xeriscape Garden Art Plumerias
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plantmanager
May 11, 2017 10:16 PM CST
Is it in sun or shade, Liz? The insulation should help a lot. Algae might be a problem. We have a fountain out in the sun, and can't keep the algae down since the company said if we used algaecide it would ruin our fountain pump. I can't see why because it doesn't ruin pool pumps.The only time we had it algae free was when we had about 6 goldfish in it.
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Name: Mike
Mountain View, Hawaii
Region: United Kingdom Region: Hawaii
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microb
May 12, 2017 6:22 PM CST
Hello Liz, Good luck with your Jacuzzi pond.

I wish I had not read the thread. We have an unused Jacuzzi sitting on our indoor lanai. Unfortunately the Jacuzzi was put in before we enclosed the lanai and now there is no way to get it out into the yard. It would make an ideal pond. Now if only I could take a wall down, but it also took four guys to bring it into the house. You have planted the seed of a project that will not go away easily. Smiling
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 12, 2017 9:46 PM CST
Ah, Mike, join me on the journey! We shall fail forward together! Hurray!

Karen, it's under my patio cover (which I believe is the same as a lanai, Mike?). It's shaded. Plus I'll probably cover half of it for the grow bed if I decide to use it for aquaponics.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Mike
Mountain View, Hawaii
Region: United Kingdom Region: Hawaii
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microb
May 12, 2017 10:24 PM CST
Yes, Liz, Lanai and Patio are the same. Kind of a shame use a fancy Hot tub as a pond but the I bet the jets and lights would be really impressive at night with fish and night blooming water lilies.
But is but a dream. Right now it is a back up water supply in the even the power goes out. We are on catchment so no power means no pump for the water. Filled it up 2 years ago for a hurricane and have not had the top off since.
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 13, 2017 10:21 AM CST
Ah, well, you can follow along with me. Since I didn't hear back from the pool guy, I'm going to see what I can find at Home Depot to cover the vents. And look up how to drain it myself. Pretty sure I can figure that out if I try!

I also see some small water plants at PetSmart. I might try a small desktop water garden for a bit to see how that goes, too.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 15, 2017 11:37 AM CST
OK, took the top off. Well, that didn't go well. The cover is ripping off and water had gotten between the cover and the styrofoam. It felt like the cover weighed a ton. Finally ripped the cover off the styrofoam and flipped it back. It's filthy in there. Threw some mosquito bits into it. Will bail it out one bucket at a time until I figure out where the drain is. #longtermproject
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 19, 2017 7:03 PM CST
There is a lot of dirt in there.
Thumb of 2017-05-19/LizDTM/fae5a9
Figured out how to drain it and am in the process.
Thumb of 2017-05-19/LizDTM/f98b0c
There's going to be some clean up. I've read you should acid wash with a diluted bleach solution. I've also read that you should wash with vinegar. I think I'm going to go with the vinegar wash, and that will be my big goal tomorrow.

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Cheryl
Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Plumerias Ponds
Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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ShadyGreenThumb
May 19, 2017 7:11 PM CST
I see all kinds of water plants along those plant "shelves", formerly hot tub seats. You have a lot of different heights and ledges for all kinds of plant life a small bubbling fountain, maybe even a waterfall in one corner? I think it will be a fun project! I don't know much about water features in enclosed areas. But I do know that even though my ponds are in the shade, as the temperatures rise, the water level drops. You might need to top off your new pond more often in the heat of summer.
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
May 19, 2017 7:18 PM CST
Liz, does it get any sun? That would make a difference. LOL! 20 some years ago, I used to sew those spa covers I always wondered how long they would last. It was a great "at home" job while my kids were still in school.
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 19, 2017 11:33 PM CST
It's in my west facing back yard, but there is shade above and to the west. So filtered sun. Plus part of it will be covered by the platform for the grow beds. Should be plenty of shade for the fishies.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 20, 2017 6:42 PM CST
Yesterday, I drained the spa. Here it is in process. You can see all the dirt left on the walls, and that's after jet spraying them with the hose.
Thumb of 2017-05-21/LizDTM/b65588

While that was happening, I dragged the cover out to the curb. Harder than it sounds because it kept falling apart. Carol, maybe you sewed this one. It's about 20 years old.
Thumb of 2017-05-21/LizDTM/fc5519

Finally, I got all but 10 gallons drained out of the bottom. The rest I was hoping to get out with shop vac, but no. The shop vac ran, but did not suck, which really sucked. I pulled a submersible pump out of one of my indoor set ups and pumped into a 5 gallon bucket. I was so disgruntled at this point that I didn't take a picture.

I then got into the jacuzzi and used a roll of paper towel to wipe up all the mud that was left at the bottom after the water was gone. And here is the payoff.
Thumb of 2017-05-21/LizDTM/fab0ba

Next step is to get the goop to block off the jets and other openings so that fish can't get into the pipes.

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
May 20, 2017 7:29 PM CST
It wore me out just reading about it! Blinking
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Greenhouse Sempervivums Bromeliad
Adeniums Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals Xeriscape Garden Art Plumerias
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plantmanager
May 20, 2017 7:33 PM CST
What a lot of work, but glad it's clean. The vents should be pretty easy to block off and then you can make it a pond.
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Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 20, 2017 9:57 PM CST
There's some kind of goop that you can get at Home Depot. Everyone just calls it "goop". Wish I could find a brand name, but I will walk in there and ask for "goop."
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
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LizDTM
May 21, 2017 9:14 PM CST
Went to Home Depot and wound up with some fiberglass bondo. I'm nervous about using it, but I think it's the only think that will work for those long vertical slots. I will spend the week studying how it works.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Liz Shaw
Gilbert, AZ (Sunset Zone 13) (Zone 9a)
Arizona Gardener
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Region: Southwest Gardening Region: Arizona Ponds Aquaponics Hydroponics
Herbs Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Gardens in Buckets Cactus and Succulents Miniature Gardening
Image
LizDTM
May 22, 2017 9:44 PM CST
Bought caps for the jets today. Measured before I went. What I bought still doesn't fit. I will try again.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. -Anaïs Nin
Name: Cheryl
Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Plumerias Ponds
Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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ShadyGreenThumb
May 22, 2017 10:35 PM CST
I saw "Goop" at Lowe"s and thought about you. It was in the Glue section. If you can't find Goop, Loctite Stick and Seal will work.
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.

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