How to Build a Backyard Waterfall Wading Pond

A wading pond is a natural alternative to a wading pool.

A wading pond with a waterfall is a wonderful addition to your backyard.
It provides a decorative attraction to your landscape and also give you a nice place to cool off and relax. The addition of a waterfall adds to the beauty and ambiance by creating a musical sound that adds calm and relaxation to your entire backyard. .

Design your pond. Plan the size and location of the waterfall. The edges of the pond must be level. If the land is not level, you will have to build it up on the downhill side or dig down further on the uphill side. Though it is nice to use a natural slope for a waterfall, place it where you can view it from a location such as a patio or from inside the house. Determine the location of the filter or skimmer, if applicable, and where to locate the electrical source.

Mark the outside edges of the pond and dig it out to the desired depth. Many pond supply manufacturers recommend both a deeper and a shallower end, but if your objective is a pond you can wade in, make the center all one depth, with the sides sloping gently up to the level of the edges.

Dig out a location for the skimmer and any accompanying plumbing or tubing and electrical line. Do the same for the waterfall.

Place underlayment down, if desired, and then cover the entire pond area with a rubber pond liner.

Attach the skimmer to the edge of the pond liner as instructed in the directions that come with the skimmer.

Add water. Test the skimmer and the waterfall. Turn them on to make sure the flow rate of the waterfall is how you want it, and that water flows through the skimmer correctly.

Place rocks and plants around the edges of the pond to mask the edge of the liner and make the pond look attractive and more natural. Consider placing one or more large rocks with flat tops in locations that will let them serve as "seats" to rest your feet in the water.

Bury the tubing for the skimmer and waterfall and the electrical line. Enjoy your backyard waterfall wading pond.

Things You Will Need

  • Shovel or excavating equipment
  • Level
  • Pond liner
  • Pond filter
  • Pump, tubing and connectors
  • Rocks, plants and other landscaping details


  • Ponds are similar to pools in that there is some on-going maintenance. Research the ecosystem of a pond to learn how to keep the water clean and healthy.

About the Author

Melissa Worcester is a mom, freelance writer and graphic designer. She has been writing professionally for over 18 years and earning a part-time income writing for various websites since 2007. She writes about technology issues, business and marketing, home improvement, education and family topics and assists in her husband's home remodeling business. Worcester has a Bachelor of Arts in communications and psychology from Syracuse University.