The Palm House Pond was part of the major transformation of Kew in 1845, under William Nesfield and Decimus Burton. Enlarged and reshaped, it provided a water feature in its own right, and reflected the entire length of the Palm House, reinforcing the building's focal importance.
The fountain, which depicts Hercules wrestling the serpent river-god Achelous, was added in 1853. The siting of the Pond was a masterstroke, the unity of it and the Palm House being recognised all over the world.
Today, the pond with its views of the Palm House reflected in the water or through the fountain's water jets, is a 'must' for souvenir pictures. It is also home to many of Kew's ornamental waterfowl and visiting birds.