How to Make a Whiskey Barrel Fish Pond

Written by samantha lowe
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How to Make a Whiskey Barrel Fish Pond
Used half whiskey barrels make great movable ponds which can be arranged around gardens. (barrel image by Andrew Kazmierski from

A half whiskey barrel can become a striking water feature in a garden. They also aid in reducing the amount of mosquitoes around your home through fish. A vibrant little ecosystem, the ponds support plants and animals. Their own little ecosystem, whiskey barrel ponds are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. A small fountain can also be added for a charming sound. With some tools and supplies, whiskey barrel water features can be made for your home garden.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Half whiskey barrel
  • 5 by 5 rubber liner
  • Industrial strength staple gun
  • Industrial strength scissors
  • Drill, with 1/2-inch bit
  • Chlorine-free water
  • Oxygenating pond plants
  • Mosquito eating fish

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  1. 1

    Place the rubber liner in the whiskey barrel and tuck it in to all the corners.

  2. 2

    Staple the lining to the barrel, about 1-inch below the rim, spaced 1-inch apart. Trim the overhanging edges of the lining, so the top of the lining finishes 3/4-inch before the rim.

  3. 3

    Drill a 1-inch hole an inch down from the rim of the barrel, to allow overflow on rainy days.

  4. 4

    Fill the barrel, up to the lining, with non-chlorinated water.

  5. 5

    Place the plants in the water container and space them how you would like.

  6. 6

    Place fish in the barrel after a month, to allow the water to age.

Tips and warnings

  • Change 5 per cent of the water every week.
  • Keep more plants in the pond than fish, for the fish may run out of food otherwise.
  • Do not put koi in half whiskey barrel ponds because they quickly outgrow their surroundings.

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