Ask a Question forum→Should I add a water fountain?

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Eddie61
Nov 21, 2018 5:33 AM CST
Hey guys, what do you think, should I buy a Water Fountain for my garden, and if yes why?
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
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BigBill
Nov 21, 2018 7:04 AM CST
It is up to you. I simply have a birdbath with a decorative one gallon container of water hanging over it. There is a pin hole in the lowest corner. The dripping or splashing of water in a garden attracts both birds and butterflies!!
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Name: Sally
central Maryland
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sallyg
Nov 21, 2018 8:03 AM CST
Eddie- Sounds fun to me. Why- for the sound of water and some bird/insect benefit. Why not- some light maintenance I guess, like a birdbath. I tried a little cheap solar one in my birdbath and it was cute- only in direct sun. A plug in one is probably the way to go.
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Name: Karen
New Mexico (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Nov 21, 2018 10:09 AM CST
I love them! They sound nice, and they attract birds and other animals. I was not happy about the bear that came to it once, but otherwise it's been all good. Mine plugs in, but I was thinking about seeing what the solar ones are like now. It would be good to get it further from the house.
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Nov 21, 2018 10:48 AM CST
I love fountains too! When we lived in a small apartment before, luckily I have a small outdoor space for a solar water fountain But the sun shifts around so in the afternoon I have to plug it in to make the water pump. When we moved, unfortunately my garden does not get that good amount of direct sun, so I just converted the water fountain into a succulent planter.
June 2008
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Our current fountain is plugged in. A good relief for my nearby orchids and epiphytes, as well as for our cats which likes to drink the water there or use it as a back up springboard to jump on our fence. Green Grin! Small birds also like to shower/drink on our fountain.
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You have to factor in the maintenance aspect too and be diligent in refilling water to it. I turn off my fountains in late Fall and just reactivate them in late Spring.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
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ctcarol
Nov 21, 2018 12:35 PM CST
If you shop for one, consider carefully how much water it holds, and how difficult it will be to clean. Also decide if you want it to be used as a bird bath, as that requires a shallow depth.
Name: Karen
New Mexico (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Nov 21, 2018 12:37 PM CST
I like them to hold enough water that they don't need refilling daily. Mine gets topped off about every 4 days during the summer. I take it down for winter.
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Name: seil
St Clair Shores, MI (Zone 6a)
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seilMI
Nov 21, 2018 2:31 PM CST
I do have a bird bath but it's kind of labor intensive so it's often dry. I wish they made a bird bath that was deeper and didn't get so scummy so quick. Moving water really helps with keeping it cleaner longer but I haven't yet found a system that really works. Ideally I want a plastic or resin bird bath with a deep bowl and fountain large enough to shut the fountain off and put the heater in for winter. Glass, ceramic and concrete won't work because they freeze and crack in my winters.

In the winter when the rim of the bowl gets thick with snow and ice I put large flat stones in the bottom so the birds do have a perch to drink from. That also holds the heater down in the water. As heavy as it seems it tends to float to the top which defeats its purpose.

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I had this set up one year. The base was a bird bath. I put a deep bowl flower pot on top and the fish fountain in that. It did keep the water cleaner much longer but, as you can see, the fish took up the whole bowl leaving little room for the birds. It did make a pleasant, relaxing sound though.
Name: Beverly
Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico (Zone 11a)
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vitrsna
Nov 21, 2018 3:13 PM CST
I just set up a small solar-powered fountain on the first level terrace and i am hoping to attract birds, butterflies, bees, and similar...but not mosquitoes. I keep it clean of algae and empty it of water when the sun goes down (most of the water is used for watering the plants). When i had a larger garden and a larger birdbath/fountain i changed the water every three days (which is the time it takes for mosquito larva to hatch) and scrubbed the bowl to prevent algae build-up. It was a delightful addition to the garden and not much work and having a solar powered pump was/and is a big plus. Vegetation near the bath/fountain will help attract the birds in my experience.

This is the current solar-powered birdbath/fountain that i hope will attract birds and etc from the adjacent forest. If not. i will have to find a larger diameter water bowl container but not deeper than about 2" (5 cm).
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Nov 21, 2018 4:34 PM CST
In my old birdbath, I have added a couple of copper coins, to reduce algae growth, but still have to do clean up as required. In our current fountain, we have copper tubings, so that serves as my copper fix for the fountain.
Name: Bea
(Zone 8b)
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bumplbea
Nov 21, 2018 4:37 PM CST
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Water feature only 6"deep birds lov it.it has three water fountains circulating the water. I let it run all year even in snow. Has a pump line to three water fountains draining water thru the concrete statues leaving a nice water trickling sound.
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This one is the clapper small water feature. The arm is filled with water by a small pump the water container collects water thru a water line then pumps water up to the mobile bamboo arm then the weight of the water makes the arm fall on a bamboo post making a clapping sound . See below clapper before application in garden. I added a blue vase for the water to pour in. Makes nice noise too. It has kept the raccoons from getting my fish at night.its Inst. 3' next to the pond.
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Pond with waterfall and fish

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Clapper before installed.

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Bubbler right front bottom small birds like finches and hummers lov this one.
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pic shows three fountains and water feature centered in lawn area surrounded by flagstone.

Some people would say I got carried away ..... But I had several more that I have decided to down size .Had them all over 20 years. I think they add sound and ambiance in the garden at nite added solar lights.

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Lower front of shrub roses. This has no pump just solar fountain after Lily's have bloomed, its a small water feature for hardy Lily's
They don't like water movement.

All the water features attract reptiles and birds & mmm yes deer...the birds eats the bad bugs and my dogs chase the deer off...most of the time.
I’m so busy... “I don’t know if I found a rope or lost a horse.”
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
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ctcarol
Nov 21, 2018 6:06 PM CST
This sounds like what you're looking for. It's Fiberglass and the base holds about 5 Gal. of water. The barrel lifts off with a half turn for cleaning , and exposes the pump. This is an unfortunate picture of it when really covered with algae , but I usually clean it weekly, and add water every few days, as the birds really have fun splashing. Unfortunately, I can't find a replacement for it, and after more than 10 years the fiberglass is starting to break down...the pump still works great. The birds, possum, and cats all seem to like it. Thumb of 2018-11-21/ctcarol/3e6551
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Nov 22, 2018 2:50 AM CST
Eddie61 said:Hey guys, what do you think, should I buy a Water Fountain for my garden, and if yes why?

Sharon has two water fountains which she , praise the Lord, did not put out last year, even on the shady side of house, unless you install some sort of auto feed, you will be having to refill them often. and treat them for pond scum.

It is amazing how quickly the water evaporates.
With some sort of auto fill , they would be great.
Livonia, Michigan (Zone 6a)
He who dies with the most toys wins
Region: United States of America Critters Allowed Growing under artificial light Echinacea Hostas Region: Michigan
Butterflies Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
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BigBill
Nov 22, 2018 5:14 AM CST
I have three birdbaths now and they are a great source of wonder in the garden. I don't see any downside in having to refill them.
Most scummy layers are easily dispatched with an old vegetable brush. Stubborn stains soak in a little bleach water are gone in an instant! No biggie! Rolling on the floor laughing
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Name: Beverly
Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico (Zone 11a)
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vitrsna
Nov 22, 2018 10:03 AM CST
@bumplbea !YES! i would say you got carried away in the most wonderful way Hurray! Hilarious!
Name: Bea
(Zone 8b)
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bumplbea
Nov 22, 2018 11:22 PM CST
Hurray! carol.... cool bubbler..that looks sweet!

There are easy directions to make bubblers on YouTube. I'm gonna add it on my Xmas list for the kids....

Beverly....clever solar fountain .... I had a lot more water features but over the years have down sized. I love water in the garden especially in hot summers. The sound is so peaceful.

Ok I admit it I am a bit OCD . But in a good way Lovey dubby

BigBill...You can get water treatments safe for birds, enzymes to add to the water keep it clean I use in a couple of my bird baths not pictured. I shut mine down during winter, drain out the water in case of a freeze . I have a couple to fix that have cracked from the water forming ice. Bummer! It was one of those odd cold winters with several ice storms. Lost a lot of garden favorites too! Hey that gives me the excuse to go nursery shopping! Rolling on the floor laughing

Tarev..fountains are really creative.

Seil... The fish in a birdbath cracks me up.
I’m so busy... “I don’t know if I found a rope or lost a horse.”
[Last edited by bumplbea - Nov 23, 2018 5:08 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1860200 (16)
Name: Bea
(Zone 8b)
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bumplbea
Nov 22, 2018 11:33 PM CST
RpR.. There is a auto water fill for ponds.. Feed stores carries them for water troughs for animals. We have them in the water for the horses. Easy to add to the ponds, attach to hose only runs water when below the fill point. It a floater type.
I’m so busy... “I don’t know if I found a rope or lost a horse.”
[Last edited by bumplbea - Nov 22, 2018 11:55 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1860203 (17)
Name: Victoria Marmerchant
Berlin, Germany
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VictoriaMarmerchant
Jan 27, 2019 6:35 AM CST
I love the water fountains in the garden, especially with antique stone and texture designs. It would look great when sunlight with a pass on water stream. You can also grow pond plants or even fish there.

VincentBowman
Nov 28, 2020 6:32 AM CST
I bought Smart Solar Solar Fountain. I'm really happy with this fountain. The birds have been coming to have a drink or a bath which is totally adorable! I like the noise of the water, and it's a pretty addition to my yard.
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
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Calif_Sue
Nov 28, 2020 11:10 AM CST

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Note: older thread, OP never posted again but this thread has lots of wonderful posts and suggestions!
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