There is nothing quite like a water fountain to make your garden seem peaceful and idyllic, no matter what lies just outside its borders. There is a dizzying array of water fountains from which to choose, but after considering the following questions, you should be well-prepared to decide which one is right for you.
- Cost. Installing a water fountain in your garden can be as inexpensive as a fifty-dollar package from your local garden store that you can install yourself, all the way up to custom-made sculptures that cost thousands of dollars.
- Style. Water fountains are usually classified as either a wall fountain or a freestanding fountain. If you have a pet, you may want to consider a wall fountain or a freestanding fountain on a pedestal--unless you don't mind having your fountain used as a doggie swimming pool! Wall fountains usually consist of a rectangular or oval base, with a spigot near the top. Water runs gently out of the spigot into a small pool at the bottom of the fountain. These types of fountains are mounted on a wall, usually one of the exterior walls of your home.
Freestanding fountains can be found in a much broader range of styles. There is the classic fountain, also known as a bowl fountain, where the water shoots up from the center of a pool. These types of fountains can sometimes be fitted with a light and colored lenses, which lends a nice effect during the evening. There are also freestanding fountains that consist of a pillar with a large sphere on top. Water streams out of the top of the sphere and runs into a pool that's built into the top of the pillar. There are also many other styles of freestanding fountains, especially if you're interested in a fountain that's as much a sculpture as a fountain.
- Material. Fountains can be found in several different materials. The least expensive option is resin, which is very low maintenance and lightweight. Concrete is another option. Recent advances in concrete finishing mean that you can now choose nearly any color and finish imaginable. Cast stone is the most expensive option, and also the heaviest. If you like the look of cast stone, but not the price tag, you might enjoy a fountain with a cast stone finish over a fiberglass base. There are also fountains made from wood and copper.
- Maintenance. Some types of fountains require more maintenance during freezing weather than others. Concrete and cast stone fountains need to be completely dry if they are left outdoors during winter. Any remaining moisture will expand when frozen and cause tiny cracks in the fountain. Fiberglass fountains also need to be entirely dry. If water remains in the plumbing and a pipe bursts, it will quite likely break the fountain, also. Fiberglass fountains are usually light enough, however, that they can easily be moved indoors during winter.
With a few simple steps, you can be on your way to discovering a fountain that will turn your garden into the peaceful, tranquil place you've dreamed of.