We had an old neglected pond in the back of the yard. It was full of snakes and larvae of all sorts. We did not have any interest in keeping this pond. Long story short, we drained the water out pulled out the pond muck and tilled it into the garden soil around the pond. Then busted up the concrete bottom of the empty pond and filled it with a layer of gravel. Then a mix of dirt, organic fertilizer, humus, and manure to fill it in.
I have planted 5 bush baby watermelons in the “pond garden” and 2 have been eaten by something. Most likely squirrels. They are heavily overpopulated here. Hopefully the remaining 3 will survive. I am surrounding the garden with blood-meal in and attempt to put off the squirrels. I don’t want to use any chemicals or poisons.
It was a lot of work draining and mucking the pond, but it has turned out beautifully. I hope it will be a great garden space for many years.
Watermelon - Bush Baby Transplanted