Modern Garden Decoration: Fountains and their Beginnings

A fountain, an amazing piece of engineering, not only supplies drinking water as it pours into a basin, it can also propel water high into the air for an extraordinary effect.

Originally, fountains only served a practical purpose. 53245ms__31213.jpg Cities, towns and villages made use of nearby aqueducts or springs to supply them with drinking water as well as water where they could bathe or wash. Until the late nineteenth, century most water fountains functioned using gravity to allow water to flow or jet into the air, therefore, they needed a source of water such as a reservoir or aqueduct located higher than the fountain. Acting as an element of adornment and celebration, fountains also provided clean, fresh drinking water. Animals or heroes made of bronze or stone masks were often utilized by Romans to decorate their fountains. During the Middle Ages, Muslim and Moorish garden designers included fountains in their designs to re-create the gardens of paradise. King Louis XIV of France wanted to illustrate his dominion over nature by including fountains in the Gardens of Versailles. Seventeen and 18 century Popes sought to laud their positions by including decorative baroque-style fountains at the point where restored Roman aqueducts arrived into the city.

Since indoor plumbing became the norm of the day for clean, drinking water, by the end of the 19th century urban fountains were no longer needed for this purpose and they became purely ornamental. Amazing water effects and recycled water were made possible by replacing the force of gravity with mechanical pumps.

Modern-day fountains serve mostly as decoration for community spaces, to honor individuals or events, and compliment entertainment and recreational gatherings.

Water Fountains: An Invitation for Your Four-Legged Friends and Flying Visitors

Anyone who has bird feeders knows that outdoor water features bring in wildlife. Birds must have water to drink, bathe in, as well a place to groom, or preen. Robins, thrushes, orioles and warblers, though not attracted to bird feeders, are alternatively drawn to the motion of water produced by fountains. Many birds prefer flowing water versus standing water, making an outdoor fountain even more enticing than a bowl-shaped bird bath. Birds hear the trickling and splashing and are even more likely to come visit.

As dog owners will concur these outdoor fountains are a great water source for the four-legged creatures. During hot months of summer, cats and dogs will be outside searching for the absolute freshest water around. Consistently flowing water is also going to require much less cleaning than a still bowl of water from a birdbath, which collects debris.

Water Features: Fundamental in any Japanese Gardens

A water element is an essential part of any Japanese garden. Since Japanese water fountains are considered emblematic of physical and spiritual cleansing, they are often positioned at the entrance of buildings or shrines. Since water is meant to be the central point of a fountain, you will find that the designs are kept very straightforward.

You will also see many fountains that have spouts made of bamboo. Below the bamboo spout is typically a stone basin which receives the water as it trickles down from the spout. Even when new, it should be designed to look as if it has been out in the open for a long time. Natural elements such as plants and rocks are often put in place around a fountain so that it seems more interconnected with nature. Clearly this fountain is much more than just a beautiful add-on.

For something a bit more one-of-a-kind, start with a bed of gravel, add a stone fountain, and then decorate it artistically with live bamboo and other natural elements. After some years it begins to really blend into the surrounding nature as moss blankets the stone.

Bigger water features can be developed if there is enough open land. Popular water feature extras are a koi pond or any sort of small pool, or even a wandering brook.

Japanese fountains, though, do not necessarily need to have water in them. Many people prefer to represent water with sand, gravel, or rocks rather than putting in real water. In addition, flat stones can be laid out close enough together to create the illusion of a rippling brook.

Selecting the Perfect Spot for Your Water Element

When you are deciding on a water fountain, be sure to give some thought to where you will place it. Any high-traffic areas such as driveways, entryways, or roundabouts are ideal spots to install one.

If you choose to put yours against a wall, there are fountains designed specifically for this purpose. They can be attached against a wall, post, or fence by using a bar or a hook affixed to the back. Such fountains are not stable on their own, therefore, be certain to affix it right away so that it does not topple over as a result of weather conditions, animals or other natural occurrences.

The garden sculpture style, yet another possibility, is perfect for parks or any place people tend to hang out to enjoy the fresh air and scenery.

The Different Styles in Outdoor Water Fountains

Gardens are great places to take a breath from the day-to-day drudgery and get some fresh air and appreciate nature. Even though there is a lot of work involved in getting a new one designed and made, it is worth the effort for anyone who will be using it. Both the “curb appeal” and the value of your real estate will be driven up when you install an eye-catching garden. There are many ways to improve the visual appeal of a yard, like adding flowers and plants, artwork, an attractive pavement, or a water feature.

A significant improvement to your garden can be realized by installing a water fountain. A true fantasyland can be created from what used to be a very simple spot. The trickling water of your fountain will not only give you a calming haven, it will also attract wild birds and other friendly local critters. All attention will now be focused on the beautiful fountain.


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