Saturday, March 15, 2008

Water features for the Cheap! Like ME!

You can't walk through any garden nursery, home improvement store, or major retail store without seeing water feature paraphernalia. "It looks so easy" you might think. Then you start imagining your garden with the soft tinkling of water as a background. Thats when you say, "Honey, what do you think of..." Then reality sets in (usually in honey's voice). "First we need to dig, then place good construction sand in the hole, then we'd need one of those black pre-formed things...look at how much they cost! Then we need a fountain, which means we'll have to run electrical out there. This is gonna cost a small fortune! Maybe, next year." And you sigh and nod your head.

But water features don't need to be a huge backyard production or a huge drain on the budget! Featured in this month's issue of The Family Handyman is a 1 day pond & fountain that is simple and inviting. This article helped me to think a bit more creatively about water features. I guess in my mind I thought that you needed to get the biggest water feature available to really have a "beautiful" pond to rest by. While that would be nice if I ever win the lotto I really don't want to wait that long and so I've begun my search for all things water and budget friendly.

I am a true DIY'er. I love to find images in magazines, online, even from TV and then figure out how to make it myself for way less money. That's Why I've compiled a list of Cheap & Easy Water Feature Tricks:

  1. If it's waterproof it's a water feature in waiting! Cheap plastic pots, galvanized tubs, even buckets. Go wild but stay cheap! Use rocks, plant material or even mounds of dirt to "hide" the ugly part.
  2. If you don't want to dig a hole for anything...That's even better. Above ground water features offer even more flexibility. If you change your mind about placement it's easy to drain the water and move your feature to a brand new home. This can provide a whole new atmosphere in your garden...instantly.
  3. Solar Powered pumps. If you're electrically challenged or you're really craving a water feature at the far end of the garden solar powered fountains can be very useful. However, these must be in the sun to work. And prices vary but if you're saving money by using cheap plastic pots then you'll have a little extra to spend on pumps.
  4. Get Whimsical! Nothing adds interest to a garden more than the unexpected. NO, I am not insisting that you get a pink flamingo with water shooting from it's nostrils! Instead re-purpose other garden items such as the birdhouse seen below.
  5. Don't be afraid to wing it! Buy a pump and some tubing. Go home. Look at your favorite garden spots. Have a birdbath that needs some pizazz? Or a trellis that would look wondeful with some water cascading down one side? With a few simple changes anything can become a wonderful water feature.

10 comments:

Melanie said...

Thanks for the tip, I'm going to look for this magazine or see if our library carries it. I've got the exact same problem, I want a water feature but can't deal with the expense or all the work invovled. I love the containers all spilling in to each other.

Gina said...

This is great! I'm looking for cheap water feature myself so thanks for all the helpful hints. And lmao @ pink flamingos with water shooting out the nostrils.

GardenJoy4Me said...

CJ ..You and I are thinking along the same lines .. lotto that is ! LOL
Yes .. there are so many different ways to have a water feature .. from cheap to "lotto" size.
I love the cascading pots best of all .. the sound and sight is just wonderful !
Fills my bucket ! LOL
Joy

Di DeCaire said...

I just wanted to stop by and say I like your masthead. We have Lake Ontario (Rochester area) in common. As for water features, I'm like a cat - no water please. My yard floods a lot too, so that's enough for me. I do enjoy water features in other peoples gardens however.

lintys said...

Very good ideas for inexpensive, creative water features.

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Jayne said...

I like to consider myself as a fairly creative person. I've recently bought some Water Feature Pumps and find myself looking around my garden now at everything wondering what I can concoct!

Susan Graham said...

I definitely would have bought it the first time around! It's just beautiful and you can do so many things with it for the different seasons. It looks just beautiful as you have it right now...love this site.

reclaimed wood furniture said...

Wow...love the collection of photos. The interiors are so inspiring...with the right amount Indian and Western decor to be appreciated by all.Thanks for sharing the photos

Susan Graham

Martin said...

Wood, garden,collections of photos reminds me of home.

Soon will be there.

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rattan garden furniture