Ecosystem ponds work with Mother Nature to provide food, shelter, and safety to the wildlife around it. It also provides an all-natural, low-maintenance piece of paradise. Every piece of the ecosystem puzzle must be present in order for a true ecosystem to be in place. Eliminate one of these elements and you’ve got an unbalanced ecosystem.

View Our ACTIVE Contractors LIC #715731
California Waterscapes is a DBA of Pacific Pavingstone Inc.

How does an ecosystem work with a man-made pond?

Step 1

Skimmer (mechanical filter): Housing your pump and skimmer basket, this device skims debris from the water’s surface to prevent the accumulation of organic material on the pond floor, pre-filtering your pond water for the next step.

Step 2

BioFalls® (biological filter): This Is hidden within your waterfall, the water that passes through the skimmer is then pumped into the biological filter. This removes excess nutrients by braking them down with natural pond probiotics called “Beneficial Bacteria”.

Our installation crew.

Our pond installation team is second to none. Quality and efficiency are of the highest importance when it comes to all of our water feature installations. Our installers go through a rigorous training period, where they learn hands on how to build a pond and waterfall from start to finish. Our jobs typically can be completed within just a few days, ensuring the homeowner is informed and confident every step of the way.

We have been installing water features since 1999, navigating all types of terrain, slopes and space restrictions with ease. We are unparalleled in experience and knowledge in the art of installing the most beautiful, eco-friendly ponds and water features. The hundreds of ponds we have installed over the years, are designed to both look and function as closely to nature’s own as possible. This allows for it to become part of the natural landscape also, attracting birds, butterflies, and housing beautiful fish and plants.

Our filtration systems are nailed down to a science.

We take pond filtration seriously, using the correct filtration system for your pond is essential to maintaining a healthy, crystal clear and balanced ecosystem. We have spent years finding and testing all types of filters from pressure filters, bead filters, external, internal, you name it! The ultimate pond equipment we have found to work best and last is the biological filtration system by Aquascape Inc. Their products are far superior and last longer than any other product on the market.

How it works: The perfect ecosystem pond includes both a biological and mechanical filter. With the larger debris such as leaves and excess fish food, dust etc. initially passing through the Mechanical Filter (skimmer), by pulling the top sheet of water off into a basket and series of filter pads. Next any smaller debris that have made it through the skimmer portion of the filter, will then pass through the Biological Filtration system (BioFalls). The Biological Filtration system has various cambers that are used to filter different size and type of debris by breaking down the contents with Beneficial Bacteria (probiotics).

Pond design.

Our attention to Pond Design, and the overall aesthetics of the water features we install, is vital to what makes our company successful. We believe that not only should the overall effect be beautiful, but the smaller design details as well. Elements such as plants, rock positioning and color, waterfall placement, and even the sound level of the water cascading down, should all be cohesive and well designed to create a truly gorgeous water feature. We ensure all of these elements come together to create a gorgeous, “magazine quality” pond or waterfall for your home.

Our design expertise has come from installing hundreds of ponds in the Southern California area, from participating in many of the award winning The Pasadena Showcase House of Design, been featured on Pond Stars – Animal Planet, Modern Marvels – The History Channel, Extreme Makeover – Home Edition – ABC, working with dozens of designers, and almost 20 years of experience in landscape construction. We are constantly staying current on new techniques and design trends within the industry.

Each waterfall and pond design has been made custom to its area and blends in naturally with its environment. The hundreds of ponds we have installed over the years are designed to appear and operate identically to natural bodies of water, a result of the way our ponds work as chemical free mini-ecosystems.

Dreaming of your own water feature?

Get Expert AdviceBook a Design Consult

What’s living in my pond?

Aquatic Plants

Plants add color and texture to your pond while providing beneficial filtration. They absorb nutrients in a pond, depriving algae of its food source. Pond plants are critical for the overall health of your pond’s ecosystem. Waterlilies, lotus, water hyacinth and water lettuce plants are the most popular pond plants as they provide shade and filter unwanted nutrients from your pond at a larger capacity than most other plants. Shading your pond with 60%-80% of the surface area with shading/floating plants is going keep algae away and your fish safe from predators. 


Fish are a key part of the ecosystem in your pond, they are grazers of string algae and bottom feeding from the pond floor all day long. They also make enjoyable pets!

Beneficial Bacteria (probiotics for your pond).

The beneficial bacteria, similar to aquatic plants consume excess nutrients (food such as fish waste, dead foliage, bad bacteria, but are also capable of breaking down organic debris. It is important to the pond’s ecosystem for these maintenance microbes to become established as early in the spring as possible.


Pond Nutrients are a general term for the energy, or food sources found in your pond at the very bottom of the food chain – microscopic. These vary, but you might have heard of a couple – phosphorus, nitrogen, carbon, silicon, calcium, potassium, magnesium, sulfur, sodium, chloride, iron. Once your pond has established itself as balanced ecosystem, your pond will be going through it’s energy life-cycle on it’s own.


Establishing your ecosystem.

A brand-new pond will need time to establish itself. Your pond as a whole, is a living, breathing organism, consisting of plants, nutrients, fish, turtles or frogs etc. Even if you choose to only house plants in your pond, you are still producing life and energy. And there is a life/energy cycle that takes place in every pond, on every level of the food chain, even on a microscopic level. Understanding the stages of this will answer a lot of questions on where your pond is on the time-line of establishment and how to care for your pond in the meantime. 

Dreaming of your own water feature?

Get a FREE EstimateAsk A Question