Sawyer Waterscaping, LLP | 3815 N. College Dr. | Cheyenne, WY 82009 | 307-634-2848

Pondless Waterfalls

Are You Thinking of Building Your Own Pondless Waterfall?

Check out our FREE Step-by-Step Guide!

Pondless and disappearing waterfalls are hands down the most popular water feature we install.

They provide a natural and soothing sounds, that simply a re-circulating waterfall/stream without the presence of a pond.  A waterfall without a pond, can add the sights and sounds of a natural waterfall without the safety concerns.

Pondless Waterfalls also take up less space and can be tucked into any corner of a landscape and are an ideal option for adding curb appeal.

Top Reasons to Consider a Disappearing Waterfall

Disappearing waterfalls provide a natural and soothing waterscape with much less maintenance than a pond. 

Here are the top reasons to consider a Pond-less:

  1. Safer than a Pond
  2. Fits into Small Spaces
  3. Less Expensive than a Pond
  4. Low-Maintenance
  5. Serenity and Relaxation

How does a Pondless Waterfall Work?

Imagine a waterfall without a pond..this is the basic principle of a pond-less or disappearing waterfall.  The pond is still actually there, it is just hidden beneath a layer of rocks.

The pond skimmer is replaced with a pond vault and water storage modules.  The water storage modules are then covered with cobble and pebble stone.  

We offer three types of disappearing waterfalls.  

  1. Front Door Falls (5-7' Stream)
  2. Backyard Falls (10-12' Stream)
  3. Fantasy Falls (20-25' w/ multiple streams and waterfalls)

Our pondless and disappearing waterfalls are all uniquely designed for your outdoor living space.  We have installed over a 1,000 water features in our 20 years of operation and no two features are alike.  Each feature becomes uniquely installed as the shape and size of the boulders ultimately determine the look of the waterfall.

How to Build a Disappearing Waterfall

If you would rather install your own a pondless water feature, we offer the very best materials for the job.  Construction is fairly straight forward and can be completed easily with the proper plan.  

Initially you need to decide on how big you want your feature.  The overall footprint of the water feature will determine what you need. 

Steps for Installing a Pondless

STEP 1: Location

Preferably, find a sloping area for your water feature.  Small streams and waterfalls can often be built in flat spaces, but ideally having a natural grade will allow for a nicely flowing waterfall and stream.

Pick a space that will be visible and enjoyed the most.  Some aim for curb appeal, others look for quaint backyard spaces.

*Always get a locate whenever you dig!

How to Build a Pondless Waterfall Image 1

Make sure to get a Locate!

STEP 2: Excavation

Remove the sod and layout the stream.  Remember to always remove more dirt than expected.  Meaning the boulders and rocks will take up a lot of space.

Rough excavation can typically be done with equipment, but the feature should be shaped up by hand with a shovel and a tamper.

Steps for Installing a Pondless Waterfall

STEP 3: Frame Boulders & Final Shaping

Framing and backdrop boulders should be placed before most of the excavation, especially if there is not access from the back of the water feature.

Backdrop boulders should be staggered placed for balancing out the stones in the water feature.

Installing a Pondless Waterfall image 2

STEP 4: Liner & Underlayment

Once the pump vault and the waterfall spillway have been checked and final grade tested, you can now place in the underlayment and liner.

A 45 mil EPDM pond liner is the best choice for smaller features.  It is flexible and extremely durable.  

When setting large boulder on top of the liner, make sure to use scraps for additional padding when necessary.

Place the pump vault and water storage modules.  Place cobble stone to fill in the basin reservoir.

Installing a Pondless Waterfall

STEP 5: Build Falls and Trim Edges

Using large boulders to frame the waterfall drops is essential for installing a natural looking fall. Flexible PVC pipe should be installed once the large boulders are placed.

Blending edges is also very important to prevent rock lined edges.

This is also the time to connect the pump to the plumbing.

Add-on items such as LED lighting is installed during this step prior to placing all the gravel and pebble stone.

Installing a Pondless Waterfall

STEP 6: Hide Liner & Blend Edges

No liner should be visible.  Tuck trimmed edges up against rocks and boulders.  Use low growing and creeping plants to soften the edges.

Use large boulders and small ones to stager grouped boulders to create a natural look.

Installing a Pondless Waterfall

STEP 7: Plant in Surrounding Landscape

Plants and vegetation will ultimately create the natural look you are after.  

Placing taller plants in the back and low growing plants in the front will allow for the water feature to standout!

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Do-It-Yourself Pondless Waterfall Kits

Backyard Waterfall Landscape Fountain Kit-image1
Backyard Waterfall Landscape Fountain Kit-waterfall image2

Small DIY Pondless Waterfall Kit


All necessary components are provided in a convenient, all-in-one kit that takes the guesswork out of purchasing individual components. 
Medium Pondless Waterfall Kit with 16' Stream and AquaSurgePRO 2000-4000 Pumpclose
Front Door Falls Pondless Waterfall

Medium Pondless Waterfall Kit


The Medium Pondless Waterfall kit provides all of the necessary components 
Large Pondless Waterfall Kit with 26' Stream
Fantasy Falls Pondless Waterfall

Large Pondless Waterfall Kit 


The Large Pondless Waterfall Kit comes complete with all of the components necessary to build a 26' disappearing waterfall. 
Pondless Waterfall Diagram
12' Pondless Waterfall with Natural Backdrop
Front Door Falls Pondless Waterfall
Backyard Falls Pondless Waterfall
Backyard Falls Pondless Waterfall
Fantasy Falls Pondless Waterfall
Backyard Falls Pondless Waterfall

Pondless waterfall Frequently Asked Questions

How Does a Disappearing Pondless Waterfall Work?

A pondless waterfall is mechanically the same as a pond.  The main difference is that the pond is hidden from view as the waterfall disappears into gravel and water storage modules. If you are interested in the aesthetic value of running water and not the requirements of a pond, then a pondless waterfall is definitely for you!

What kind of maintenance can I expect with a disappearing pondless feature?

The pondless waterfall-concept is great for those that want a waterfall or the sound of running water without actually having a pond, fish and the maintenance that is associated with a traditional water garden. Other than the occasional routine maintenance, which can last no more than 5 minutes per week if constructed properly, pondless waterscapes are essentially maintenance free! With the incorporation of an autofill valve, allowing the pond to maintain a proper water level on its own, this type of water feature is ideal for those with a busy lifestyle.

Can you have aquatic plants in a pondless waterfall?

Absolutely, however water lilies are out of the question. Marginal aquatic plants do wonders at softening the edges of a streams and in waterfalls. If you want to keep your maintenance to a minimum, we suggest choosing only from the wide variety of shallow rooted aquatic plants that are easy to thin and remove.  Stay away from large varieties of iris, umbrella palms, and defiantly stay away from anything labeled GIANT, like Giant Papyrus for example! It can grow up to 12 feet tall!

Does my disappearing waterfall need to run 24 hours a day?

NO! One of the most compelling reasons the disappearing waterfall has become so popular in today’s landscape is because you can turn the waterfall off whenever you want. With an ecosystem pond it is mandatory that your run your waterfall filtration 24 hours a day in order to maintain life in your ecosystem. With these style waterscapes you can shut the system off and on as you desire. If you run the pump on your disappearing waterscapes only 12 hours a day, it will cost you half the price, in electricity, of a similar sided pond. Leaving town for a couple of weeks? NO PROBLEM, just turn you disappearing waterscapes off and when you get home turn it back on! Just another reason the disappearing waterfall has reached such stature in such a short span of time.

Will a disappearing Pondless waterfall attract mosquitoes?

Mosquitoes are attracted to stagnant water so the answer is NO, so you can breath easy. With a disappearing pondless waterscape you are dealing with a waterfall and usually a small stream with chaotic moving water that is less than appealing to the pesky mosquitoes. What your disappearing water feature will attract is dragonflies and birds, which both prey upon mosquitoes. So it could be argued that a disappearing pondless waterfall my even decrease the amount of mosquitoes on your property! 

Gregg Sawyer is an artist! His work is high quality and delivers far more than he promises. We are so fortunate to have him in Cheyenne!

Brenda Creel

We love our new water feature, it is absolutely beautiful. It takes a special skill to create such a natural looking waterfall in someone's backyard. Greg and his crew did an amazing job!

Sandy Hammond

Gregg Sawyer and his crew are the hardest worker's. We have had 2 water features done over the past 11 yrs and just had one refurbished last week and I couldn't explain how happy we are. Greg has always done amazing work and goes up and beyond to make sure sure everyone's happy. Greg and the Sawyer crew. Thank you again for everything. I'm sure will see you again soon. Keep up the good work.

Bob & Heather Parry

Pond-less Waterfall Projects

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Click the button below and fill out a quick form to get a free design estimate!