Creating A Pond Waterfall

Installing a waterfall in your pond can turn your yard into a peaceful, calming oasis.

The sound of trickling or splashing water will attract birds, butterflies and other beneficial insects to your yard and make your pond a focal point in your backyard.

Here are some handy tips if you’re considering adding a waterfall to your pond.

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Pond waterfall

Things to consider before creating your waterfall

Pond depth – The pond will need to be deep enough to cover the pump and provide the water necessary for the waterfall.

A pond that is at least a foot (30 cm) deep should be sufficient.

Fish – If you have fish in your pond, the best option would be a gently trickling waterfall powered by a small pump.

Waterfalls that create lots of splashing water or strong currents can cause fish to become stressed if there aren’t any calm waters for them to retreat to. [1]

A couple of large rocks placed in the middle of the pond can also help to reduce the current and provide a place for the fish to relax.

Pond waterfall with fish

Pond plants – Plants like water lilies should be planted away from the waterfall to avoid them being damaged from the flowing water.

The water spray from a waterfall increases the humidity of the surrounding area, which is helpful if you have tropical plants growing around the pond.

Sun – Creating a waterfall in an area with full sun will cause the water spray to evaporate quicker, which means you’ll have to top up your pond more often.

backyard pond waterfall

View – Ideally you want to install your waterfall somewhere that you can easily see it and enjoy its beauty.

A spot that is visible from an outdoor deck or sitting area inside the house is best.


Materials required to create a waterfall in your pond


You can use one large square shaped rock or several flat rocks stacked on top of each other to create the height needed for your waterfall.

You’ll also need a few smaller rocks to hide the tubing and divert the flow of water out and away from the rocks.

garden pond waterfall

Preformed Waterfall

Instead of using rocks, another option is to purchase a natural looking stone waterfall that you can place next to the pond. This is a really quick and easy way to create a waterfall.

If you have a sloping block you can install a preformed waterfall that will create a gorgeous cascading water effect in your pond.


A submersible pump placed on the bottom of the pond will pump the water up to the top of the waterfall.

Tall waterfalls need higher-powered pumps because the water has to travel a longer distance along the tube.

For smaller waterfalls you’ll only need a low powered pump.

garden waterfall


Flexible tubing is connected to the pump and travels up behind the rocks to the waterfall.

The tubing can be used to form the spout of the waterfall or you can connect it to a spillway that will create an attractive looking waterfall.

You can even buy spillways with lights, which create a beautiful effect at night time.

Creating a backyard waterfall

Finishing it off

Planting some bog plants around the edges of the pond will help to frame the waterfall and catch the water spray from the waterfall.

Tall plants can be planted behind the waterfall to help it blend in to the surrounding area.

You can also place some submersible LED lights on the bottom of the pond or install an outdoor spotlight pointed at the waterfall to create a stunning night time effect.

backyard pond waterfall

So there are my tips for creating an attractive waterfall in your garden pond.

I hope this has been helpful.


Do you have any questions about installing a waterfall? Let me know in the comments below.

Are you on Pinterest?  I have boards dedicated to Backyard Ponds and Water Gardens that you may enjoy.

building a waterfall
Backyard waterfall

Kelly Martin

Hi, I'm Kelly Martin, a landscape gardener with a special interest in ponds and water gardens. For over a decade, I've been designing and creating beautiful gardens that feature stunning water features, from small garden ponds to large water gardens. Read more