Create your own garden fountain

A garden fountain can make a striking addition to your landscape, adding interest as well as relaxing get-aways.

A garden fountain can make a striking addition to your landscape; fountains not only add interest but create soothing sounds which can offer a relaxing retreat from today's stressful world. There are many different styles to choose from and most are readily available at garden centers. Fountains require an electrical pump, a power supply, a water source, and some type of container or reservoir. Pumps can be purchased at garden supply stores and usually come in a kit with everything you need.

Before installing a garden fountain, you should first consider the size and style of your existing garden. The fountain should complement these surroundings. Will it be in a natural setting or a more formal one? Will the fountain be established in a small area or a larger one? These are important factors which should be determined ahead of time; implementing the wrong type of fountain can make it appear out of place. What type of material or container will be used? Will it be concrete, stone, fiberglass, or something else? For those seeking more creative looks, almost any type of container will work as long as it is clean and watertight. For some types of containers, such as clay pots, sealants may need to be used in order to prevent leakage. Also, consider the effect you would like to create, such as a bubbling, spraying, trickling, or wall fountain. Once all of these factors have been established, the pump size must be determined.

Popular choices which are used in creating garden fountains consist of wooden barrels and bamboo canes. Barrels of varying sizes placed at different heights make interesting and unique fountain displays. The pump can be placed in the largest barrel with water trickling or spraying down into the smaller ones. These look quite lovely tucked into mass plantings within natural gardens. Barrels can be good choices for small or large areas because they come in different sizes and can also be cut to fit into their surroundings. Large clay jars or other decorative containers can be used as well. These can be done the same way as with barrels and are stunning when placed near ornamental grasses.

Bamboo canes make exceptional garden fountains, especially in Japanese style settings. They can also be used with barrels as well. Simply take a well-hollowed out piece of bamboo and drill holes in various areas of the cane. With the pump securely fastened inside the barrel, attach the piece of bamboo in an upright position to one end of the barrel. Run tubing from the pump to the bottom of the bamboo cane, fill the barrel with water, and turn it on. Water will then flow from each of the bored holes of the cane down into the water barrel. Another option for bamboo might incorporate the use of a stone basin. A reservoir can be installed beneath the basin with the pump fastened inside by large stones. A plastic liner will need to be implemented in the area required for the placement of the reservoir. A grate that is cut to fit the reservoir may be placed on top with pebbles or cobblestones added to hide the pump below. Two hollowed pieces of bamboo will be required, one upright and the other horizontally placed into the upright.

The upright cane should be taller than the basin and the basin should be wide enough to catch the water. Drill a hole into the upright piece that will be large enough to accommodate the horizontal piece. Another smaller hole will need to be drilled into the horizontal cane to allow for the insertion of tubing. Attach the horizontal cane into the upright with the tubing hole facing downward and apply a sealant around the pieces to prevent any leakage. Run tubing from the pump through the grate and insert this through both the upright and horizontal pieces of bamboo cane. Once the reservoir has been filled, the fountain can be turned on. This will produce a soothing, steady flow of water and looks natural when placed among grouped plantings.

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