The Q&A Archives: Small Indoor Water Garden

Question: What do I need to make 40-gallon indoor water garden?

Answer: If you have ample natural light such as in a sunroom, you might be able to grow any number of plants in a large waterproof container. (An aquarium, a galvanized tub or a child's wading pool would all work just fine.) Water hyacinth, parrots feather, and a dwarf water lily might be possible choices. With slightly less light, say from a big bright south window, you could easily grow tropical bog plants such as papyrus and baby's tears indoors. You could also grow strictly underwater plants in an aquarium under artificial light. In most cases, though, an indoor water garden consists of a small table-top type of fountain surrounded by an attractive grouping of small stones or rocks and perhaps a few ordinary houseplants such as ivy arranged around it to provide a garden-like effect. To make a fountain you simply need a recirculating pump and some flexible tubing. Many garden centers (and tropical fish suppliers) now sell both pumps and tubing and offer do-it-yourself instructions.

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