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WATER GARDENING BHT307

Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

DEVELOP SKILLS IN THE CONSTRUCTION AND DESIGN OF WATER GARDENS

Develop your skills in designing, constructing and maintaining a variety of different types of water gardens (fountains, streams, ponds, waterfalls, etc). Water gardens may be small or large, and when used properly can bring movement, sounds and a character to a garden that cannot be found any other way.

 

 

 

Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

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Learn to Design, Build and Maintain Different Water Gardens and Features

"Study the design and application of water features"

" I have never found the staff at any other learning institution as supportive as the staff at ACS. This gives one a lot of peace of mind and confidence to go on - at every squeak from my side, you guys have always been there, immediately to sort me out. The feedback on my lessons has always been really good and meaningful and an important source of my learning. Thanks!..."
- Student with ACS

 

COURSE STRUCTURE

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction
    • Scope and nature of water gardens
    • What size water garden
    • Water supply: rain, tanks,etc
    • Water quality
    • Siting the water garden
    • Evaporation rate, water depth, safety
    • Water in garden design: formal, informal
    • Edging, Water sculptures, shade
    • Water effects: sound, reflection, movement, light, cooling,
    • Water life: algae, fish, mosquitoes, wildlife, plants
  2. Water Garden Construction
    • Introduction
    • Planning the water garden
    • What effect do you want
    • Matching the effect with the type of garden
    • Shape, size and location
    • Type of construction
    • Surrounds
    • Using a liner
    • Pre formed water gardens (Kits)
    • Pond edges
  3. Equipment: Pumps, lights, filters
    • Submersible pumps
    • Lighting: power source, DC power
    • Lighting design with water
    • Pond filtration systems: sterile or living water
    • Mechanical or biological filtration
    • Swimming pool filtration
    • Sand filters
    • Diatomaceous earth filters
    • Cartridge filters
  4. Ponds and Watercourses
    • Designing a natural watercourse
    • Siting a stream
    • Water circulation
    • Pond design
    • Dams
    • Bog gardens
    • Reed beds
    • Pond management
    • Oxygenating plants
  5. Spas and Swimming Pools: Design and aftercare
    • Choosing a swimming pool
    • What sort of pool do you need
    • Structural considerations
    • Cost considerations
    • Types of pools: concrete, fibreglass, vinyl
    • Above or below ground
    • Pump and filtration system
    • What shape
    • Special features in a pool
    • Heating a pool
    • Pool care over winter
  6. Indoor and Outdoor Water Features
    • Introduction
    • Pot ponds
    • Water barrels
    • Wall plaques and wall fountains
    • Water walls
    • Water spouts
    • Bird baths
    • Fountains
    • Cobble fountain construction
    • Waterfalls
    • Cascades
    • Canals
    • Using water features in a landscape
  7. Water Plants
    • Introduction
    • Waterside trees and shrubs
    • Bog plants
    • Emergent water plants
    • Floating leaf plants
    • Aquatic plants
    • Water lilies
    • Plants to avoid in water gardens
    • Surrounding plants
  8. Aquatic Animals
    • Introduction
    • Conditions needed by fish and aquatic animals
    • Maintenance
    • Fish
    • Frogs
    • Tortoises
    • Water snails
    • Insects
    • Birds
    • Troubleshooting

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.



AIMS
  • Understand the nature and scope of water gardens.
  • Identify and describe generic construction materials and techniques suitable for water gardens and pools.
  • Select appropriate equipment for use with water features.
  • Specify the design and construction of a pond or watercourse.
  • Specify the design, construction and maintenance of a spa or swimming pool.
  • Specify the design & construction of a Water Feature other than a pond or water course.
  • Identity the water plants commonly used in water gardens.
  • Identify a variety of aquatic animals suitable for water gardens, and their requirements

 

WATER GARDENS

Water gardens add a new and unique dimension to gardens, and can be used in many different ways to create many different effects. Still water in a tranquil garden pond or pool creates a feeling of serenity and peace, while moving water in fountains, streams and small waterfalls gives a more dynamic feel to the garden, generating a sense of life, movement and sound.

Other uses of water gardens include:

  • modifying the environment of the garden, providing a moist, cool micro-climate for tender plants, or providing welcome relief by lowering the temperature near the house or other garden areas on a hot day;
  • attracting wildlife to your garden, particularly birds (you should be aware though that birds such as ducks can also mess up your pond or pool, eat your fish, and be quite noisy);
  • providing a home for fish, frogs, water snails and other interesting aquatic creatures. These will help control mosquitoes and other annoying insects, and help keep the pool clean;
  • adding interest in the garden by providing a contrast to other features in terms of texture, colour or form, and by providing a reflective surface that allows an ever-changing scene, as the sun moves, as clouds pass by, or the wind ripples the water surface;
  • providing an opportunity to grow a range of interesting and attractive aquatic or waterside plants in the garden;
  • providing a visual link between various parts of the garden;
  • creating a physical barrier that prevents access to parts of a garden, or a physical link that direct or guides where people move. 

The scale and style of water gardens is almost limitless, ranging from small courtyard wells or water sculptures, to tranquil backyard goldfish ponds, through to large fountains, dramatic cascades and large formal swimming pools.

Water gardens can be simple or complex, large or small, and in a huge variety of styles. Depending on the theme or style of the garden you might perhaps decide to have straight-edged or geometrical designs for a formal garden, smooth curved designs for a modern garden, or irregular-shaped designs for less formal and natural-style gardens. You might choose to have a single pond or a series of ponds with water cascading from one to another. As you work through this course and look at different styles of water gardens, you will find there are many possibilities, any of which will enhance your garden.

 

 

 

 

 

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Meet some of our academics

Maggi BrownMaggi is regarded as an expert in organic growing throughout the UK, having worked for two decades as Education Officer at the world renowned Henry Doubleday Research Association. She has been active in education, environmental management and horticulture across the UK for more than three decades. Some of Maggi's qualifications include RHS Cert. Hort. Cert. Ed. Member RHS Life Member Garden Organic (HDRA) .
Diana Cole (Horticulturist)Horticulturist, Permaculturist, Landscaper, Environmentalist. Holds a Diploma in Horticulture, degree in geography, permaculture certificate and various other qualifications. Between 1985 and 94, Diana was a task leader with the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers. Since 2001 she has been chairperson of the Friends of Mellor Park (with Stockport MDC). From 2005 she has worked exclusively in horticulture as proprietor of her own garden design and consultancy business in and around Derbyshire; and at the same time as part time manager of a small garden centre. Diana has been an enthusiastic and very knowledgeable tutor with ACS since 2008.
Yvonne Sharpe (Horticulturist)Started gardening in 1966, studied a series of horticulture qualifications throughout the 1980's and 90's, culminating in an RHS Master of Horticulture. Between 89 and 1994, she worked teaching in horticultural therapy. Founded the West Herts Garden Association in 1990 and exhibited at Chelsea Flower Show in 1991. In 1994, Yvonne joined the staff at Oaklands College, and between 1996 and 2000 was coordinator for all Amenity Horticulture courses at that college. Since leaving Oakland she has been active as a horticultural consultant, retail garden centre proprietor and sessional lecturer (across many colleges in southern England). In 2000, she also completed a Diploma in Management.
Gavin Cole (Horticulturist)Landscaper, Horticulturist, Psychologist, Builder, Garden Writer. Studied construction and surveying at Bristol Polytec, B.Sc. at University of Northumbria (1988) and Psychology in Australia. He completed a Cert.Garden Design in 95. In the mid 1990's he worked as Landscape Manager and Garden Designer for the Chelsea Gardener in London and in 97 commenced his own business as a garden designer; operating at first in London, then in Australia. He has worked for ACS as a tutor, course counsellor and writer since 2001, alongside his own freelance work as a horticultural consultant and writer. Gavin has co authored many books and written hundreds of articles published in gardening magazines including Home Grown, Your Backyard and Garden Guide.


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