Yesterday something jumped off my lawn and into the pond, scaring my girlfriend in the process.
And it was a frog.
Or rather, several frogs.
Very odd actually. They’re actually smaller than some of the tadpoles, and a different colour.
I wondered for a while whether they might be frogs that have jumped from another pond, but there isn’t another nearby (as far as I know) so they must be mine.
I got the camera out tonight to try filming them, but they’re so small (smaller than a 5p piece), they’ve really hard to focus on. Plus my camera won’t refocus while it’s recording, so if they move (they jump, and swim…. very fast) then that’s me scuppered.
I came home from work today, and was hanging some washing out, when I had a look in the pond and noticed my tadpoles have grown legs. Exciting.
Here’s a very quick, short bit of video.
Amazing how they’re instantly recognisable as frogs legs.
I wanted a fountain for my pond.
I’ve seen online that some of them are suitable for ponds with wildlife living in them, so bought one.
There are some that can pump thousands of litres of water per hour, but my pond only holds about 150 litres, and I didn’t want Niagra Falls – just a little water fountain.
Also, as there’s no electricity in my garden, and it’d be a pain in the arse to add it, I thought I’d try a solar-powered one. You can get ones with battery supplies for when there isn’t any sun, but they’re expensive, and it’s been pretty sunny in my garden of late. That’s almost certainly set to continue, right?
I blame Iceland. They seem to be getting the blame for everything else at the moment.
Edit: The day after, with brilliant sunshine. I was getting a good 12-15cm of height, from the single jet attachment.
It’s day whatever of this never-ending task that I still haven’t completed.
Ponds are hard.
I consulted two people – someone who has worked in the building trade, and someone who is a keen gardener – and both told me that building a pond is “a lot of work”.
Still, I’ve started, so I’ll finish.
My girlfriend suggested we needed some oxygenating plants for our pond, before we put the tadpoles in.
Luckily her mum has a pond which had (spawn, and then) tadpoles in it, so we took some (plus some water) from there.
Oxygenating pond weed is hard to come by. I tried B&Q and several garden centres (by phone), and several didn’t sell it, but suggested Almondsbury Garden Centre. They seemed very friendly on the phone and confirmed a selection of oxygenating plants, so I went out there.
What doesn’t come across in the video (because I didn’t film very much) is how big the place it. MASSIVE.
The next video may be more interesting, as I’ll be attempting to feed the tadpoles.
There’s been some debate about whether you technically “build” a pond. Surely you “excavate” it, more than “build” it? You’re taking away, mostly…..although I suppose then you put some things back in. This is the third day of me digging a hole anyway.
As you can see, I’ve had a busy few days, mentally. I had a sudden worry with all these huge “rocks” I kept finding and killing with a pick-axe, that one of them might be a water/sewer/gas pipe or something else important, so contacted the landlady to make sure there wasn’t anything running through our garden, before continuing.
Also, unfortunately it rained on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.
On the upside, that means I was continuing the build on Saturday, when my girlfriend was there to help. With me pick-axing, and her shovelling, things sped up infinitely (well, at least by 2-3 times, anyway).
This is like a mid-season episode of Lost. It could be called “day2”, or “the day not much happened” or just simply “Tuesday”. In fact, it is quite difficult to see what I’ve done, on video.
After day 1, I was exhausted. After putting the video online, I thought “this is really dull – nobody will want to see the rest”. Yet, without me mentioning this project on Twitter at all, that last post got a surprising amount of views. In fact, it got more views than any prior iwantedparklife post. It could be a complete concidence. Maybe it is just because the Twitter festival was about to take place, and my name was mentioned with the other ticket holders on their site.
“Pondlife”? “Pondbuild – almost live”? I need a better name for this.
I’ve been pondering a pond since I lived in my old house. I’ve just moved house about 6 weeks ago, and thought I saw a frog in the street (cul-de-sac) recently. My suspicions were confirmed, sadly, by a dead frog squashed flat after being run over, a few days ago. Our garden was a bit too square, with patchy grass and waterlogged, so me and my girlfriend decided to do something about this, and also put some trees, bushes, and vegetables in. When the landlady found out what we were planning, she insisted on giving us some money to help out with this, and coupled with the frog I’d seen recently, we decided to build a pond.
There will be no fish, as they’ll only attract more cats. Plus fish are really dull, aren’t they? My girlfriend said she only really liked tropical fish (so can’t go outside), and having them indoors would make the place look like a dentist waiting room.
So instead, I’m going for frogs, plants, and rocks.
They say that farming contributes to global warming, due to the high levels of methane produced. It’s all true. After an hour of digging with a spade and all that bending over, I can tell you that the level of gaseous emissions in my garden had at least doubled.