10 Inventive Designs for a DIY Garden Fountain

The soothing sound of flowing water has long been a feature of celebrated gardens around the world. Not only does a fountain add welcome beauty to an outdoor space, but it also provides a pleasing white noise, helping to screen out the sounds and cares of the larger world. To give a sense of cloistered calm to even the most modest backyard, you needn't shell out for expensive designs found in home and garden centers. Instead, here are 10 imaginative DIY fountains that will delight visitors to your outdoor space.

  1. Pot It Up



    For an almost instant homemade fountain, insert an inexpensive electric pump into a large ceramic or concrete planter, then fill it with water and plug it in. Place your creation in a bed of low, flowering ground cover to highlight your landscaping, or install it on the deck or patio and relax to the soothing sound of flowing water.

    Related:  10 Inspired DIY Planters to Dress Up Your Garden

  2. A Striking Creation



    If you've got a dusty bowling ball rattling away in the basement, you’ve got the crowning feature of this clever backyard fountain. Here, the base is made from a length of sewer pipe—but any barrel or large planter would serve the purpose.

  3. Deer Deterrent


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    This traditional bamboo fountain is commonly used in Japanese gardens to chase deer away. Water streams into the receptacle, which tips when it's full, spilling the contents and making a loud knocking sound when it hits against the rock base. The length of bamboo then tilts back into position to be filled again. Even if your backyard isn't a local haunt for deer, you might enjoy the rhythmic sound this fountain brings to your yard.

    Related:  8 Ways to Combat Garden Pests

  4. Fool the Eye


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    At first glance, this clever water feature looks like pure magic...but look more closely! Though the vintage watering can appears to be causing water to pour endlessly into an old washtub, the can is actually fed with water via clear tubing. To re-create this look, snake the tubing up and out of the tub and back into the watering can. Once the water reaches the spout level, it will spill down to the lower level, only to be recirculated in a refreshing loop.

  5. New Life for an Old Cask


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    A salvaged wine barrel can become your new favorite backyard focal point. This one was sterilized and deodorized with care before it was transformed with the help of a store-bought container pump. For extra interest, consider adding LED fountain lights and aquatic plants.

  6. Go for a Geyser



    Do you have kids or pets and don’t want to worry about anyone falling into your fountain? This design removes the threat of a standing pool of water. Instead, the water seems to vanish into the rocky ground. Beneath the stones, a buried tub and tank hold 15 gallons of water, and a pump shoots a steady stream of water into the air.

  7. Uncork It



    After you’ve polished off a special vintage, consider repurposing the bottle into a backyard fountain. This DIY genius used three wine bottles, a whiskey barrel, a large wooden planter, and glass chips to create a water feature that evokes a bucket of chilling vino.

    Related:  10 Creative New Ways to Use Old Bottles

  8. Pipe Dream


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    Now, here's a statement piece! Using leftover decking wood, copper plumbing fixtures, and a large plastic storage tub, this homeowner constructed a scene-stealing fountain. The back wall hides the pipes that circulate the water from the tub and provides an attractive backdrop for the curtain of falling drops.

  9. One for the Birds



    This delightful fountain appears to be delicately balanced on a pile of landscaping rocks. In reality, the rocks conceal a 15-gallon plastic drum. The rocks keep the circulating water cooler than it would be in a traditional birdbath, making this refreshment station particularly well suited for feathered friends in hot climates.

    Related:  Wing It—16 Approaches to a DIY Birdbath

  10. Tiers of Happiness



    Here's proof that an elegant backyard fountain doesn't have to cost a lot. In this smart design, a $5 circulating pump turns a trio of planters into a bubbling water feature that adds character to a desert property. Leftover paving stones are stacked inside the lower pots to support the ones above them and are hidden by a layer of rocks gathered from the surrounding landscape.

    Related:  Pass On Grass—7 Reasons to Landscape With Gravel

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