The lower pond is finally open and some of the koi are enjoying life outdoors again. We first put in Jet Li, a Kikokuryu to test out the pond. Since it’s always sad to have only one koi, we let Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid swim around for the evening with Jet Li. I made a little rock house they could hide in and hoped we wouldn’t find a little koi in the skimmer or RDF. Since they did well, we added the rest of the Omosako Shiro Utsuri tosai. When the weather turned much warmer, we added in Ika and Sumiko 14-16″ Shiro Utsuris. Miyu will go out tomorrow and a friend is giving me another Shiro named Super. Nora is the only Shiro who will not be in this pond. One, she is more accustomed to a larger pond and two, she is part diva, part bully. She needs her space, so she’ll go into the upper pond when we get the right pump going. Our landscape designer has provided a lot of thoughtful suggestions on plants to move and plants to purchase. The gardens are looking in better shape than they usually do at this time of the year. He has designed some structures for us to cover the equipment pits, provide shade for the lower pond and define different areas of the garden. Our contractor helps us with a reality check and staying on budget. We’ve done a lot of planting this past weekend! This equipment pit cover is on week two and almost done. There are more photos on the 2016 pond building page. To stay on budget and on time, we scaled back the size, the assortment of decks and kept to cedar. The designer had envisioned a metal roof but sourcing the tin tiles would eat up both time and dollars. Lots of landscaping will need to be done around the cover. We really have gotten a lot of work done…so much that my garage is actually getting cleaner. Good thing because we are hosting the koi club meeting in a few days.