Carter's Water Garden

How deep should my Water Garden/Koi Pond be? | Carters Nursery, Pond & Patio | Jackson, TN

Question : How deep should my Water Garden/Koi Pond be? | Carters Nursery, Pond & Patio | Jackson, TN

Thats a very important question to ask before you design and construct your Water Garden or Koi Pond! There is a LOT of differing information out there on what the proper depth should be in a Koi Pond or a Water Garden too… I will try to give you a few good, simple rules to help with your design.

For small Water Gardens that will have some small pond fish (goldfish, comets, shubunkins, etc.), but not Koi – 18” deep will be adequate. Of course proper filtration & aeration are a given on any Ornamental Water Feature – but 18” depth is fine.

If your just going to have turtles and frogs I still try to always keep an 18” depth. Mainly because I know you will later want to add a few fish & the 18” depth would be a costly V-8 moment 😊

Design your new Water Garden/Pond with graduated depths to allow for differing types of Aquatic Plants & to allow easy access for maintenance. Always have a deeper area for the fish based on the minimum depth rule! | Carters Nursery, Pond & Patio | Jackson, TN

Now, if you want to keep Koi, it’s a bit different. Koi get much larger than goldfish. Up to 3’ in length is not uncommon after Several years. That’s why as a rule, Koi Ponds are a minimum of 2’ deep. That’s 2’ Minimum! You can go deeper if you want – I put many 3’+ deep Ponds in. BUT, there are tens of thousands of two-foot deep ponds around this country that are full of beautiful, healthy koi. It’s kind of a ‘Magic Number’ if you will. We rarely freeze here in West Tn. & when we do it’s not for an extended period of time. In fact, over the last 29 years of running my business- Carters Nursery, Pond & Patio, I dont think I have lost a fish to cold or freezing! Pretty good record..

A 2’ deep Pond is also easy to get in and out of for doing Pond Maintenance – very important to keep in mind! 90%+ of the Water Gardens that I install are 2’ deep

So to wrap up my minimum depth recommendations –

• 18” minimum depth on a Water Garden for goldfish or turtles & frogs.

• 24” minimum depth on a Water Garden or Pond with Koi.

If you stick to these minimums along with the other recommended parameters for filtration & stocking quantities for fish – you will be on your way to success with your New Water Garden/Pond of your dreams 😊

Happy Pondering!

Mark Carter
Carter’s Nursery, Pond & Patio
2846 Old Medina Rd.
Jackson, Tn. 38305
Ph# 731-424-2206