If you look through any books about landscaping, they almost always feature different kinds of fountains, but they usually all operate out of some kind of pond and always feature huge landscaping rocks.
For many of us who are a little more urban and simply want to sit on our patios and hear the gurgle of a mountain stream, these huge mountain and pond projects are a little more than we bargained for. However, there are fountains you can make yourself, put on your patio or balcony and even take them with you if you decide to move.
- Fountain pump (can be purchased at any home improvement center)
- Rubbermaid plastic horse trough (available at local feed store or online)
- Plastic tubing for the pump (about three feet)
- Large rocks to fill the plastic container
- Decorative rocks and plants
Alternatively, you can buy a buy a Pondless Waterfall Kit at most home improvement centers, but that does take some of the fun out of it.
Installing the Waterfall
If you are going to put the waterfall on your patio or balcony, the first thing you have to do is make sure the fountain will be next to a power source like an outdoor wall outlet. Other wise you will have to run an extension cord for the pump and that takes away form the enjoyment of having a waterfall on your patio. It’s good to have this kind of fountain next to a wall anyway, because it is not a permanent structure and can use the support of the wall.
Place the plastic container you are going to use to hold the water where you want it to be situated on the patio. Fill the container with the large rocks. You don’t want to spend any money on these, so you may have to go on a scavenger hunt to find some.
Make sure that you have enough rocks so that they come to the top of the plastic container. These rocks won’t be seen, they are merely used to anchor and support the pump. Position the pump so that it will be beneath the water and is securely fastened into place by the rocks.
Make sure that the cord of the pump reaches the electrical outlet. Attach the tubing to the pump. This is where the water will come out, so the length of the tubing will depend on how high you want the waterfall.
Fill the tub with water and turn on the pump, making sure that the tubing is above the surface of the water and pointed in a direction so that it won’t get anything wet. If the pump is working the way you want it to, you can now decorate your waterfall.
Decorating the Waterfall
Take the decorative rocks and place them over the larger rocks in the plastic tub. You can then stack them up around the tubing so that the water from the tube flows over the rocks. There are two ways to build up the rocks so that they form a structure for the water to fall down.
You can attach the rocks to each other using an epoxy or have holes drilled into them so that the tubing can be threaded through them. Once you have the rocks situated the way you want them, hide the plastic tub with a variety of plants. Then sit back and enjoy your new patio waterfall.