Before and after building a backyard pond

Are you planning on building a pond in your backyard but have no idea how long it can take? Do you need to know about pond construction timelines so you can better prepare for the project?

In this post, we cover how long it takes to build a backyard pond and what can change the process. By the end of this post, you’ll have a better idea of how long it can take to build backyard ponds.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Pond In A Backyard?

Building a pond in a backyard can take anywhere from 2 days to about 1 month. How long it takes to build a pond mostly depends on the size, how many people are working on it, and their experience levels. Here at Amen Corner Ponds, we tend to average between 3 and 7 days to build a pond.

Small ponds of about 8×11 feet take one person about 5 days to complete. A 3-man crew can build a small pond in 2 days.

Medium ponds of about 11×16 feet take one person about 14 days to build. A 3-man crew can do it in 4 to 5 days if using an excavator.

Large ponds of about 18×25 feet can take one person about a month to install. A 3-man crew can do it in 7 to 10 days if using an excavator.

*These are for decorative backyard ponds and fish ponds. They aren’t applicable to a farm pond, an acre pond, or other pond types. Amen Corner Ponds mostly build ecosystem ponds.

Timeline Breakdown For The Main Pond Building Steps

Excavating a pond


This is the first step in the how to build a pond process. Depending on the pond’s size and shape, excavation can take anywhere from 1 day to several days. If you’re planning on adding any features like steps or shelves for plants, this will add time to the process as well.

Adding Filters

Installing filters in your pond will take a few hours, depending on how many filters you’re installing and their size. Most ponds need both mechanical and biological filtration to help them stay clean, clear, and beautiful.

Laying Down The Underlayment & Liner

Once the excavation is complete, the next step is to install the underlayment and liner for your pond. This usually takes around 3 hours but can take longer, depending on the size of your pond.

Rocking The Sides & Bottom

Once the underlayment and liner are installed, it’s time to rock the sides and bottom of your pond with either stone or gravel. This will help stabilize your pond walls and give beneficial bacteria a home. Depending on the size of your pond, rocking can take anywhere from 1 day to 2 days or longer, especially if you’re adding any features like steps or shelves around the perimeter of your pond.

Finishing Touches

This includes adding aquatic plants, filling up the pond, hiding the liner, and other small adjustments. With even a small pond, it can take about 1 day to do this.

Installing Additions & Clean Up

The final step in building a pond is installing any additions such as pumps, skimmers, lights, etc. This step also involves cleaning up the site, which includes removing any excess dirt or rocks, tools, materials, etc., from around the perimeter of your pond. Depending on the size of your pond as well as the type and number of additions being installed, this step could take 1 day or longer. If adding multiple items at once, like pond lighting, fountains, etc., it’ll further add to the timeline.

Factors That Can Change The Pond Building Timeline

Backyard pond with additions

Pond Size & Depth

The size and depth of your pond will have a major impact on how long it takes to build it. Smaller ponds are generally easier and less time-consuming to build than larger ponds, as they require fewer materials and less labor. The same holds true for shallow ponds versus deep ones; shallow ponds typically require fewer steps in the construction process than deeper ponds do. If you’re looking to save time, we recommend opting for a smaller, shallower pond over a large and deep one.

Overall Complexity

The complexity of your pond project will also determine how long it takes to build the pond. If you want something basic, like a simple oval or circle shape, it should take less time than if you choose a more complex design with multiple curves or angles.

If you want a much simpler project, you can use any flat areas in your yard that can accommodate a pre-formed liner (which often comes with pre-cut edges). This will also help speed up the construction process since there won’t be as much ground preparation required beforehand.

Contractor’s Knowledge And Experience

The knowledge and experience of the contractor are one of the most important factors in determining how long it takes to build a pond. An experienced contractor can quickly assess what needs to be done and make sure it is done correctly. They are also knowledgeable about all aspects of pond building, from digging and lining to water features and landscaping. With their expertise, experienced contractors can complete projects more quickly than those who are new to the field or lack proper training.

Also, higher-tier contractors should be able to give you a better experience regarding communication, crew professionalism, and cleanliness.

Weather Conditions

Another factor that affects how long it takes to build a pond is weather conditions. Rainy days or extreme heat can slow down the process by making the ground too wet or too hard for construction work. Additionally, cold weather can make it difficult for workers to stay outside for prolonged periods of time, thus slowing down progress. As such, it’s important to choose a contractor who is willing and able to work in all types of weather conditions so that your project stays on schedule regardless of environmental changes.

Ease Of Site Access

One of the most important things to consider when planning a pond build is access to the site. If your construction crew has easy access to the site, then they will be able to work more quickly and efficiently. On the other hand, if access is difficult or limited—for example, if the site is located up a steep hill or a fence is in the way—the building process may take longer.


How long does it take to build a pond like this one

Ponds are typically constructed with basic elements such as waterfalls, rocks, plants, etc., but some people choose to add special touches such as fish or decorative lighting. Adding extras like these can extend your timeline significantly due to additional labor costs and materials required for installation.

Other additions can include:

Excavation Obstacles

The type of soil you have on your property can play a major role in determining how long it takes to build your pond. Hard compacted clay soil will be much more difficult to dig than loose sandy soil.

If there are trees near where you plan on digging your pond, their roots could present some challenges during excavation. You either have to choose a different location or remove them. If the trees are healthy, it’s important not to damage them as this could cause permanent harm and lead to costly fines from local authorities.

Before starting any digging on your property, it’s important to check for any underground utilities, such as power lines or gas lines, that could be in the way of where you plan on excavating for the pond.

No matter what time of year you decide to start building your pond, bad weather conditions can delay progress by forcing workers offsite for safety reasons or preventing heavy machinery from being able to access certain areas due to mud or flooding. Even when sunny days do come around after a period of wet weather, excess moisture can still make certain areas too soft for large machinery or prevent workers from completing certain tasks until conditions improve again.


There are other elements that can influence the timeline for constructing a pond, such as budget constraints or unexpected problems with materials or equipment.

It’s also critical to consider any local regulations that may affect your building process; for example, many areas require permits prior to construction, which can add to your timeline depending on how long it takes for approval from local authorities.

The type of pond will also affect the timeline. Fishing ponds, farm ponds, and other types will have different timelines and factors that can change them.

It’s important for you or your contractor to be aware of any potential obstacles before beginning work so that they can be addressed quickly if they arise during the course of construction. This will help ensure that your project is completed on time and within budget while still meeting all quality standards.

Get Your Pond Built Quickly And Professionally By Amen Corner Ponds

That’s how long it takes to build a backyard pond and what can change the timeline. Keep in mind, if you hire a pond builder, the higher tier ones will be more expensive, but you’ll have a better experience and a better water feature. Find out more about new construction ponds on our new pond construction service page.

If you’re looking to get your pond project up and running in no time, then Amen Corner Ponds is the perfect choice for you! With our expert team of professionals, you can count on us to provide a high-quality service that will get your pond built quickly and professionally.

So don’t wait any longer – fill out our contact form today and see how we can make your dreams come true!