How To Easily Build Your Own Garden Fountain

The idea for an article about how to garden fountain came right after my recent How To Create A Garden Border. The articles compliment each other by showing you fast and easy ways to make your garden a place of peace and beauty.

Some may find how to garden fountain a little trickier, but not much. Like our previous article, this one gives you a sturdy foundation on which you can let your imagination play with ideas and supplies. Surprise yourself. Surprise anyone who visits your garden. Making things grow is fun, and giving plants and flowers beautiful environments makes it even better.

Before you begin, we recommend reading the Complete Guide to Water Gardens: Ponds, Fountains, Waterfalls, Streams. It costs less than $10 on Amazon and will give you a broad and useful overview. More important, it will give you an installation referebce you can carry around outdoors as you go from place to place building your fountain.

That said and once you decided on the kind of fountain you want and feel comfortable about building, you’re ready to start working. A great garden fountain should be one you can create in a single weekend.

Here are some basics to start with.

Before you bring a single tool out, you need to be sure the location for your fountain is less than fifty feet from an outdoor power source. Pumps with longer cords are not available, and for the same safety reasons, extension cords are not recommended.

Now, think about what you want your garden fountain to look like. There are fountains you can buy that have designs you like, or you can make your own, whichever is more economical or more personal. My favorite is a little hill of flat stones that allows the water to trickle down the levels as a series of small falls. If you’re ambitious, you can even drill holes through the stones so that they are anchored by the rising water tube.

More decorative ideas include making a bird bath from no longer needed pottery or sheet metal wrapped in an expanding cylinder that braces the top of your fountain. You can use anything that will endure constant exposure to water. So, if you can’t find something you like on sale or prefer true originality, be as creative as you like. It’s your fountain to enjoy, after all, isn’t it?

How To Garden Fountain: The Basics

  • Start with the foundation, of course. A waterproof basin that will sit at the bottom of your fountain can be anything from a washtub to a plastic container. It needs to be six inches wider than the fountain itself and a foot taller than your pump, allowing for connections and drainage.
  • Top off whatever basin you’ve selected with a screen or grill. This protects your pump from debris; so, it must be sturdy, like a framed window screen, for example, and larger than the basin itself.
  • The basic item you must have is a submersible pump, the heart of your garden fountain. It will continuously send water up into whatever your design is. You won’t need anything more powerful than one that handles 250 gallons per hour (gph). Easy to find at garden stores or online. (See sidebar)
  • 2 inch copper pipe that is about two feet longer than the planned height of your fountain.
  • For the mechanics, you will need a compression female adapter to connect you pump with the pipe. Usually ½ inch x ½ inch, but check with manufacturers recommendations to be be sure. And you will need a ½ inch ball valve for controlling the water flow.
  • What’s next? The external fountain itself! As suggested above, it can be anything that withstands constant water exposure. You can buy it or make it, but be sure it’s a design that you will enjoy living with for years. It’s the heart of how to garden fountain.
  • You will also need composite decking on which to place your fountain and plenty of gravel for drainage beneath the basin. Experts recommend two 50 pound bags of gravel.
  • Finally, you will need enough 1 inch PVC conduit to protect the length of your power cord as it runs underground.

How to garden fountain instructions from the books you can choose from on the sidebar will help make sure important steps and cautions are not missed. The internet is great for many things, but we believe that having thoughtful guides in hand for how to garden fountain will pay richer rewards. Research and planning pay off in the long run. You may build your garden fountain in a weekend, but you will live with it for much longer than that. You can find instructions on the internet, but your ease and success in following them will be better when have expert guidance you can carry with you all through the project.

David Stone

Find all my books on my Amazon Author Page