Curious horses poke their heads across the picket fence and gaze at what appears to be an ancient pond. They're not the only ones fooled by this Anthony Pool and garden by landscape architects Tammy Gragg and Eric Friedman of Friedman Associates. Human visitors have been known to remark about the ageless beauty of the pond and garden at the rear of the house.
The two acres, not long ago an abandoned orchard, now burswith the unabashed romance and color of an English country garden. The pond that delights so many visitors is actually a free-form swimming pool.
The project's directors selected moss-covered stones and boulders for their aged appearance. A special mix of commercial materials was also used, to give the project the look of one that was completed over decades rather than months. For example, a bluestone path leads from the house to the pool, while fieldstone lines the pool and steps leading into the water.
Riverjacks, stones rounded by the action of water in a river over time, make up the pool's coping. Surrounding the pool is Delaware River aggregate, a mixture of stones in cement with more texture than commercial concrete. All stonework was done by Ed Arnold of Arnold Masonry.
The unheated, 800-gallon pool features a heat-attracting blacmarbelite finish, enhanced by a flow-return system that returns warmer surface water to the pool's bottom. To keep maintenance costs low, the owners opted for a system that lowers the costs of chemicals up to 95 percent by producing chlorine from salt.