Garden Art forum: Small Water Feature Tutorial

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Name: Holly
South Central Pa
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HollyAnnS
Mar 6, 2012 4:16 PM CST
I am sure that some of you have seen this before. I was asked about how hard it is to install a water feature like this so I am posting some directions and pictures on how we installed our Beautiful Blue Ball.
Thumb of 2012-03-06/HollyAnnS/58f0fb
It is a bubbler, a glazed heavy clay egg shaped ball. There is a large hole in the bottom and a small hole in the top for the water to flow out of and down over the ball an back into a catch basin. We used a cut off 55 gal plastic drum, the top ¼ was removed and the bottom ¾ of the drum is buried with just a couple of inches kept above the ground to sit the top piece on. Leaving a few inches up will also help to keep ground runoff out of your drum. You really don’t want to get a lot of silt in there.
Here is my professional hole digger and inspector and you can see how the drum sits in there with the raised rim.
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You can use any type of grid to sit your bubbler on. This works with any type of fountain feature. Since my guys are pretty handy I got the deluxe hook up but I could have easily done this myself using a different grid top. Josh made me an aluminum cover plate. He put in a permanent electric line with an on off switch and an extra outlet. Nice for me because I won’t be moving mine (not something you have to do). Hooked up the small submersible pump and the plastic tubing that will run up thru the top of the cover plate and the ball.

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Jamie a plumber and lover of all things copper. Decided that I needed a flared copper fitting for on top of my ball so the black plastic top came off and was replaced. Then they turned the project over to me. A little landscape fabric some mulch and several buckets of round river rocks that I had collected. Pretty much finished the job.

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Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/5752/
Name: Holly
South Central Pa
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Region: Mid-Atlantic I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pennsylvania Tropicals
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HollyAnnS
Mar 6, 2012 4:39 PM CST
Like I said I have very handy men so they did things like the aluminum cover and permanent electric line. Things that I wouldn't have done if I was putting this in myself. Really all you need is a small submersible pump with some tubing and some type of catch basin and top grid. Once you get the idea you will be amazed at how easy these things are to put together and you will find all kinds of things that will re-purpose into basins, top grids and fountains. I have seen a small water feature where they used a pile of pretty rocks to hide the tubing and the water just ran down over the pile. The rock pile sat on a few patio pavers that had been laid with 1/2 in. open spaces for the water to flow thru. I couldn't see how they supported the pavers or what they used for the catch basin but It wouldn't be hard to figure out how to do that.
Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
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Name: Vicki
North Carolina
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vic
Mar 6, 2012 5:43 PM CST

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Very nice Holly and I love the color Thumbs up
Name: Sally
Wesley Chapel. FL (Zone 9a)
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Sossman
Mar 6, 2012 5:56 PM CST
I agree with Holly. If you are willing to put in the "grunt" work and do your research, it's easy enough to put in a water feature. I have one in my front yard, one in my back yard and one on the lanai. All three are different types but all three were easy to do. The hardest part was digging the hole for the front and back yard ones and making sure I had it all level! Oh, also, if you are putting them into the ground, make sure you have decent drainage as heavy rains will have a tendency to lift a lighter pond material. Hilarious!

Oh, and btw, Holly I just ADORE that blue color "egg"!!! Lovey dubby
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Mar 6, 2012 6:28 PM CST
Holly, you should have submitted this as an Article to Trish! Maybe you still can?
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
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goldfinch4
Mar 7, 2012 3:13 AM CST
Nice tutorial Holly. I love that beautiful blue color too!
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Name: Holly
South Central Pa
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Region: Mid-Atlantic I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pennsylvania Tropicals
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HollyAnnS
Mar 7, 2012 6:07 AM CST
Thanks everyone, we get a lot of enjoyment from this one. It makes a nice little sound that is very pleasant to listen to when we sit on the front porch.
Sossman, I don't think you can have too many water features.
Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/5752/
Name: Sally
Wesley Chapel. FL (Zone 9a)
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Sossman
Mar 7, 2012 6:55 AM CST
Holly, you are right! The one in my front yard sits just outside the window near where I play on my computer so I hear it's little gurgle and watch the birds, frogs and lizards enjoy it too. The one in the back yard is just outside the lanai and is the largest one. It has a spitter that puts out a nice stream that makes a really great noise as it splashes back into the pond. All the woodland critters enjoy coming out at night and getting a drink from that one so I need to add water almost daily to it. The one on the lanai was created from a very large pot with no drainage hole. It had a crack in it so I sealed the crack, added water, a pump to circulate the water (not much noise, just a quiet bubbling sound), an aerator and some 25 cent gold fish and plants. The fish are a joy as the swim and sparkle in the pot and they come up to the surface and beg for water. Can never have too many water features!!!! Hilarious!
Name: Brenda
Dolores, Colorado
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bsavage
Mar 7, 2012 11:27 AM CST
Very good tutorial! I agree, can't have too many water features! Luckily, my DH is handy as well... we have a waterfall/pond in the front yard, and a cool fountain he made out of local logs in our shade garden.
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Mar 7, 2012 11:41 AM CST
Awesome tutorial Holly. I hope to try this when summer gets here. Now to think about where I will put it. : )
Name: Holly
South Central Pa
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Region: Mid-Atlantic I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pennsylvania Tropicals
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HollyAnnS
Mar 7, 2012 6:23 PM CST
Lynn, If you have any questions this summer just ask. Can't wait to see what you will put together.
Sossman, I have a beautiful big bowl that is just waiting for me to find the right fountain for it. I think I am going to make a bamboo fountain to pour into the bowl.
Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/5752/
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Mar 7, 2012 9:56 PM CST
I will certainly do that Holly.
Can't wait to see what you do with the bamboo fountain plan.
Name: Debbie
Lexington, VA (Zone 6a)
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rcn48
Mar 10, 2012 9:55 AM CST
Just seeing this Holly, WTG! I've always loved your "egg" but this is so cool to see the step by step process. I don't think I've seen you post the actual steps before but then my memory is not as good as it used to be! Whistling

I saw the coolest pot on one of the DIY shows this week - like a "head" with the top chopped off! Hilarious! The homeowners had chosen it in the update of their landscape and used it for a bubbling fountain. I loved it! Maybe I could "make" something similar? Rolling my eyes.
Name: Becky (Boo)
Phoenix, AZ 85022
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Boopaints
Mar 11, 2012 9:49 AM CST

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Thanks for sharing Holly! I love your bubbler . . . how nice to have men that like to do these things for you!
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Name: Holly
South Central Pa
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Region: Mid-Atlantic I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pennsylvania Tropicals
Ponds Hummingbirder Birds Butterflies Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level
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HollyAnnS
Mar 11, 2012 7:50 PM CST
RCN, I think you can make anything. Thumbs up You have so much talent.
Boo, You are right it really is nice to have someone that can make whatever I dream up. Since Ric is a Gardner and has the same interest he is usually very willing to build for me. Our 2 sons live close by and are also pretty willing to stop by and help when needed.
Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/5752/
Name: Debbie
Lexington, VA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Creator of ATP Logo and other graphics Region: Virginia Garden Art Cat Lover
Dog Lover Ferns Hostas Hellebores Heucheras Garden Ideas: Level 1
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rcn48
Mar 14, 2012 7:01 AM CST
It took me some time to find that pot but this is the one I was talking about. Whoa, I think I'm going to HAVE to try to make one - $420 for the large one - which is of course the one I want!! Rolling my eyes. It looks great planted but the one I saw on the DIY show was used for a fountain. Thumbs up

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Name: Chris
Ripon, Wisconsin
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Forum moderator Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Database Moderator
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goldfinch4
Mar 14, 2012 11:36 AM CST
Wow, that is cool!
Cubits Store: The Sempervivum Patch - plants, containers, accessories!
Also stop by Timber Treasures and Garden Buddies on Cubits
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Mar 14, 2012 11:36 AM CST
Oh, how beautiful that is. Lovey dubby
Name: Sally
Wesley Chapel. FL (Zone 9a)
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Sossman
Mar 14, 2012 12:15 PM CST
Make sure to create a couple of them, as I want one too!!! Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Holly
South Central Pa
Charter ATP Member Greenhouse Region: Mid-Atlantic I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Pennsylvania Tropicals
Ponds Hummingbirder Birds Butterflies Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level
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HollyAnnS
Mar 14, 2012 2:05 PM CST
I have seen those head pots and the right plants can really look good in them. That one is huge and beautiful.
Life is Great! Holly
Please visit me and learn more about My Life on the Water a Personal Journey Thread in the MidAtlanticMusings Cubit.
http://cubits.org/MidAtlanticMusings/thread/view/5752/

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