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Water Features For Patio Landscaping - Perfect Balance

Feb 23, 2008
If you think that having a garden pond or fountain is not possible for you to have, you are wrong. In fact, anyone can have one, even if you only have a patio or balcony. You can create your own little oasis to relax near. It will add a lot of style to your yard as well.

In the simplest form, a water feature in your yard can be a dish of water for a birdbath. The dish needs to be at least 6 inches across and a half-inch deep. The water needs cleaned out every couple of days to keep the dish clean, and to keep the water healthy for the birds to drink/bathe with.

If you set the dish on the ground, you will probably attract birds, butterflies, squirrels, frogs, toads, etc. If you hang the birdbath, you will restrict the visitors to mostly flying animals. If you want to protect birds from predatory animals, this is the best option.

To take water features one step further than birdbaths, you can grow water plants in a tub garden on your patio or in your yard. Half whiskey kegs with plastic liners are common containers for this. Plenty of other options in different sizes and shapes are available, however. By adding small pumps, you can create waterfalls or fountains. The sound of the moving water will be very relaxing. This can even be used in small areas like when landscaping balconies and townhouses for example.

The container should be at least one foot deep if you want to be able to grow plants. The water lily, for example, needs deep water to grow. If you choose to grow other types of plants that like shallower water, you can place them on bricks in the container to bring them more towards the surface.

To help reduce algae growth, you can use floating plants such as duckweed. These plants reduce the sunlight in the water, causing slower algae growth.

If you put potted plants into the water, don't forget to add a layer of stones onto the soil so the soil does not float away in the water.

If you live in a cold climate, you should know that you can't leave the tub outside in the winter. If it is small enough to move inside, you should do that. If not, you should drain all of the water out of the tub and wait for springtime. The tub could be damage by the expansion of the ice if you allow it to freeze. The plants would die as well.

Electric and drowning hazards can be an issue with water features. Be very careful if you have small children around these tubs. Also, make sure you use a grounded electric outlet for power for the pumps.

With proper caution and care, you can have a safe, beautiful water garden at your home.
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