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Product review – A new pond pump!

I am not sure why the pond does not get more mentions on this blog, as it is such an important feature of the garden and I love it. It attracts so much wildlife, as well as giving me another “growing medium” for plants. I was delighted when Swell UK offered me something from their catalogue. Since we have lived here Shedman and I have used an indoor aquarium pump for circulating the water around the pond – not such a great idea as our pond is about 20 feet x 14 feet;- it was totally unsuited for the job we gave it to do. But you know how it is – the years flash past, the pump didn’t actually give up, and it was on our list of things to do … one day. We jumped at the chance to road test a “proper” pond pump and chose a Hozelock Aquaforce 1000 from the extensive range that Swell UK have.

pond pump hozelock 1000

It was important that whatever we chose would not harm the wildlife allready in the pond. The Hozelock Aquaforce has a wildlife protection system which stops newts, small fish and frogs from accessing the pump. As we have a large colony of newts and frogs, not to mention lots of baby fish – this was a crucial factor. Many years ago I had a pond which did not have wildlife protection around the pump – in the spring, the results were not pretty. We also chose one of the smaller pumps as we do not want a raging torrent, but a trickle of water as it patters over the slate water feature that Shedman built.

The large cage area of the pump helps to reduce clogging from the silt and mud and contributes toward water purity. All plus points that the fish in the pond appreciate.

Shedman found the unit easy to assemble and it came with clear instructions and all the bits you need, apart from the pipe and your chosen water feature:- fountain, waterfall etc.


The unit also has a carry handle, so much easier for lifting out of the pond for any maintenance, or during the Autumn. Hozelock do recommend removing pound pumps for the Winter. If you place your pump in the deep area of the pond, it is an idea to tie some cord to the handle so you are not tempted to drag the pump by the electrical lead.

Our only thought about this product is it might be unsightly, or need disguising if you have a very shallow pond, while the unit can be put on its side it is recommended that it is not placed directly onto the bottom of the pond, but on a flat level platform, approximately 300 mm above the bottom of the pond. We use a piece of slate. You can of course disguise your pond equipment with the strategic positioning of pond plants and rocks.

Our pump has been running for a few months now, and we are very pleased with it. It certainly helps with keeping the water clearer and has not clogged up. Winter is an ideal time of year for making plans for the garden and if you don’t have a water feature, put it on your list of things to do – the wildlife in your garden will love you for it!

Equinox Garden

equinox sunset   And so the year turns and the Autumn equinox passes.


At last, after so many days of dry weather we have had some rain, this seems to have refreshed the garden – it was looking very tired. I notice that as I walk down the path in the mornings, my feet take me to the studio rather than the potting shed. My Inner Artist is saying “Enough with the gardening – time to make beads, stitch bags, create art” (My inner gardener however mutters about digging borders, planting bulbs and creating a new flower bed on the boundary between us and next door)


Autumn has arrived, it must have, Downton Abbey and Strictly are back on our television screens. The garden, however, is having none of it. Autumn, what Autumn? It has pulled out all the stops and is having a last Hurrah!

“Ignore us at your peril” the flowers call as I wonder to the studio – and I notice that I haven’t picked the dahlias in a few days.



D. Karma Lagoon has flowered and flowered this year – and is perfect in vases. d. Karma chocolate is also good.  This year I hid all my Karma chocolate amongst other plants in attempt to hid them from the ear-wigs – it worked so well that it also hides the flowers from me!

The Salvias have been an absolute joy. S. Amistad is has joined them this year and it is a delight Although, it still in a large pot where it will stay until the Spring, when it will get a proper new home in one of the beds.


Although Amistad wouldn’t stay still for a photograph – not like s. confertiflora, also in a pot as it is slightly tender and I take it into the greenhouse over winter. I find the flowers of s. confertiflora so unlikely that they make me smile when ever they catch my eye.


In the low afternoon light, the garden is full of deep shadows and bright sunlight


It is going nowhere quietly!



Why I love September

Over at Veg Plotting, VP asks “Why do you love September?”

September is my most favourite month of the year, especially when we have golden days like to-day.

I will let the 4 images speak for themselves!




seat-in-gravel-gardenAlthough – I do wish I had time to simply sit ….. maybe next week