History of Water Garden Gems

In 1990, Burton and Sally Nichols started Water Garden Gems here in Marion, Texas on an almost 100-year old farmhouse property on Interstate 10. They held Pond Building classes outside and built one pond at a time, bringing Koi and Fancy Goldfish to central Texas. They started with knowledge, a love for Water Gardens and Koi and, over many years, built the largest full service Koi and Water Garden retailer in Texas and the surrounding states.


From a farmhouse and a vision, we now have over a dozen display ponds, a huge Koi pavilion holding the largest assortment of adult Koi in any retail establishment in Texas, over 80 species of water lilies and water plants, and a store filled with multiple suppliers of pumps, filtration system, pond lights, UV Clarifiers, fountains and miscellaneous gift items. We’re also located on one of the nicest 3.5 acre properties you will ever walk through–sumptuous landscaping and gorgeous water features abound! Add some statuary, yard decorations, hand crafted items, and an array of water spitters and fountain options and you’re guaranteed to enjoy every visit! Click here to see some of what we offer!

In July of 2013, Alona and Shane Stefek joined the Water Garden Gems family and Water Garden Gems is now being led into its second generation, continuing the tradition of excellence and industry leadership. Keeping Water Garden Gems “Family Owned and Operated” is important for us because we desire to continue to serve and supply our customers at the high level to which they have become accustomed while adding new life and new vision to the company. Growing this family atmosphere here at Water Garden Gems is fundamental to our Mission Statement and to our belief system: moving forward within our family traditions and creating a service unmatched in the industry.

Shane and Alona Stefek have three boys adding their special touch and character to the place as well. If you are looking for beautiful Water Lilies, choice Koi, or bullfrog tadpoles, you are likely to meet and be assisted by one of the family. It truly is a family business with new faces and energy abounding around every corner. We look forward to giving you something new and exciting everytime you walk through our gates as we take Water Garden Gems forward into the next generation of Water Gardening!

It’s been an awesome road for Water Garden Gems! You know what we look like, now check out some of the pictures we dug up from the past.

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