As you enter the backyard, a stream starts at the top of the hill and flows down and around the corner of the house. Water passes through three waterfalls and empties into a small pond with goldfish.
The pond can be viewed from an upper sunroom/deck or from a cobblestone patio made from reclaimed brick. The pond contains a variety of water plants like marsh marigold, sweet flag, water celery, water lettuce, and hyacinth. Other plant material includes hops growing up a flag pole that Bruce will harvest later this summer for brewing beer.
Tour Site B
Jason and Kelly
The backyard paradise Jason calls a “wondrous oasis” includes a pond with waterfall and streams that fills the patio area with the sweet sound of water. The path along the side of the pond has a feeding rock for feeding the large Koi. The birds love to bathe in the stream and perch on the driftwood and small concrete bridge over the waterfall. A lighthouse, underwater lights, and landscape lights illuminate this fenced courtyard pond setting. As you leave the pond area, you will pass perennial gardens and find a “mushroom fountain” in a pondless water feature in the front yard under a grove of mature oak trees.
Tour Site C
Alden and Rebecca
This site is an example of how to transform a steep backyard into a place of beauty. It is favorite gathering spot with a “north woods” like waterfall connecting two small ponds. Bruce Johnson designed and built the water features of both Site C and D. He kept things natural with the use of large flat stepping stones to cross the lower pond to a patio area. Alden and Rebecca enjoy meals in this natural setting at either the upper or lower pond.
Tour Site D
Norm and Deb
This historic home, built in the 1880’s, was the residence of Minnesota Governor Marshall and childhood home of Deb. Norm and Deb moved into the home in 1997. When they added an addition off the back of the home, the motto for the backyard renovation was “less grass and more gardens”. In 2001, the waterfalls and pond were professionally installed in this garden oasis which includes a variety of perennials, trees, and shrubs. The Koi and Goldfish overwinter in the pond with the use of a livestock heater. Don’t miss the garden art “Larry’s palette”, created from Deb’s Dad’s workshop with Mom’s Iris planted close by. “Our garden and pond give us great joy, pleasure, and peace.”
Tour Site E
Steve and Pauline
On this totally private residential property, you will find four separate water features: a large pond with a waterfall and fish, a pondless stacked stone grotto, a formal fountain with a pond, and a small pond. In addition there are 2 container water gardens and a bamboo deer scare. This site includes a wide variety of trees, evergreens, shrubs, and perennials in a comprehensive garden design. Other points of interest: Hanging herb garden, working antique pedestal sink, rain barrels, espalier apple trees, tropical plants, and DIY garden projects. Be sure to take a peek at the creative use of a small space for the vegetable garden.
Tour Site F
Bill and Rosemary
This oasis of miniature landscapes, symbolic plants and sculpted trees evokes the intense intellectualism of the classical Chinese literati. As you enter the property, the pond area flows throughout the backyard with the use of unique stone. This garden draws upon the architectural history, traditions and artistic style of Chinese residential gardens. Created by their “Landscape Painter”, this extension of their home will eventually be a place for poetry reading and creation, musical performances, drinking and dining, and loving life; a walled escape from politics into art.
Tour Site G
This large urban lot contains a pond with a waterfall and fish in a fenced courtyard setting. Walk through the entire backyard to see the garden beds filled with shrubs, perennials, and a collection of both miniature hosta and giant hosta. Other points of interest include a grapevine fence in the backyard, spiral garden in the front yard and garden art throughout the property.
Tour Site H
Gary and Mary
A 20’ x 25’ pond in the back yard abuts the patio allowing close up feeding of the many Koi. A split waterfall then tumbles six feet to a lower 8’ x 10’ pond where the water is pumped back up to a gentle waterfall by the patio. Several paths around the ponds and through the gardens take the visitor through a large garden with a mix of perennials, shrubs and annuals, taking advantage of the wet, dry, shady, sunny, hilly, and flat aspects of the terrain. Tons of Dresser Trap Rock and an upper deck looking down on the large pond further enhance the experience. Be sure to see the front gardens and a smaller pond located by the front door.
Tour Site I
Steve and Jody
Steve began ponding in 2002 with a small pond. Then in 2008, with the help of his sons, he enlarged it to the current size, 11 ft
X 12 ft and 3 ft deep. Most of the pond materials are repurposed items used to make the pond function. In 2016, Steve built a Skippy filter, to filter his pond without the use of chemicals. Be sure to ask Steve about this unique large bio filter that keeps his 3000 gallon pond clean. The pond area is surrounded by perennials and a variety of water plants. Steve is proud of the creativity and engineering that has gone into his pond.
Tour Site J
Dale and Janice
This site developed as a series of additions over time. First came a timber frame mortise and tenon joint playhouse constructed with 100 oak pegs. The pond came next which includes a waterwheel followed by the construction of a water tower needed to turn the waterwheel, all built by Dale. The final addition was a waterfall, stream, bridge, and fish. All located within a garden of perennials under mature trees.
Tour Site K
Mark and Lynnette
This site, previously a farm field, is now a neighborhood of natural prairies filled with wildlife and birds. The waterfall and pond are relatively new, built just 3 years ago. They are set in a wooded area of this one acre property. The field boulders that surround the pond were picked from of the farm fields of the past. There is plenty of open space and a fire pit area for entertaining. You will also find a rain chain and wine barrel transformed into a rain barrel at the edge of the patio area.