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Thread: Earth burm around pond question

  1. #1
    Cowiche Ponder's Avatar
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    Earth burm around pond question

    We are needing a burm (berm?) around the edge of newly dug hole that will become the pond. To get close to the depth I've wanted in the pond it will need to be about 1-1/2 feet high. How wide does it need to be? Another question along the same line. Hubby (who is my great help in getting this done and chief hole digger, pipe gluer etc) is afraid of dirt caving in under the liner? I think there is enough pressure from the water in the pond that it is not a problem. I'm more concerned with the burm/berm being wide enough that the water doesn't push it OUT!

    there pare pictures in the photobucket album under pond construction, but I find they lose all perspective of depth/size, but it may help to see.

    Mary

  2. #2
    seanmckinney's Avatar
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    The width of the berm depends on how well you compact it, the soil type and how steep you want the outside to be.
    If this is to blend in with the surroundings then I think anything steeper than 1 in 3 for the outside flank is going to look odd, which means at least 3.5' wide at the base and remember the surface will need protecting from weather. My last pond has a berm that varies between 6 and 9 inches high, to blend in it is about 2' wide at the base, ultimately the surface will be turfed.
    If the soil is well compacted and 'structural the internal face could be vertical. I would be inclinded to build the berm and compact it as it rises, then 'dig out' the internal face. I wouldnt build the berm on the edge of the hole as the compacting of the berm may cause problems with hole side collapses. With my pond the berm is at least 2' away from the hole edge on 3 sides, by doing this I not only gained depth but shallow shelf space as well. On the 4th side it is on the edge and that was awkward.
    You are correct in that the water will help support the soil but it is not unfailing support, if you put heavy loads near the edge you increase the chance of shelf collapses

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