When it comes to water features, fountains are some of the most versatile. Because they come in a range of styles and are made from different materials, there’s an option to match virtually any landscape design. But choosing a fountain can be tricky because it’s not always easy to determine which type is best for your yard. The key to choosing the right type is considering the size of yard and existing landscape features so you can find a fountain that blends in easily with the rest of the yard.
A spouting fountain is generally the most dramatic because it features a pipe that sprays water up into the air for a striking, plume-like effect. This type of fountain is easy to add to an existing water feature, like a pond or swimming pool, because it only requires a submersible pump. You can pair a spouting fountain with a statue so the water sprays from a spot on the statute or opt for a design that features nozzles that spray the water in specific pattern, such as ring or bubble. While you can add a spouting fountain to an existing water feature, some also come as self- contained units so you only have to plug the pump in to have an instant focal point for your garden.
A cascading fountain is more subtle. Instead of using a pipe to spray water, the fountain makes use of multiple levels so water gently overflows from one to the next. A traditional tiered fountain is an example of a cascading fountain, but you can also find smaller styles where water flows through a series of pots or other containers. Cascading fountains are usually self-contained, which means all of the necessary plumbing is housed inside the unit. This makes cascading fountains easy to add to your yard without having to hire a plumber or fountain specialist for the job.
A pondless fountain is a twist on traditional water features. Unlike a spouting or cascading fountain that draws from a visible water reservoir, such as a pond or lower basin, a pondless fountain’s reservoir is hidden underground. Because of its design, it doesn’t require as much maintenance as other types and can be installed in smaller areas. The fountain base is often made from a non-traditional structure, like a boulder, column or urn, which is placed on a bed of river rocks or gravel that the water can drain through to the reservoir below. A pondless fountain usually has a subtle, contemporary look, and works equally well as a front or backyard feature.
A wall fountain is a smart choice if you have a small backyard because it doesn’t require as much space as a spouting or cascading fountain. You can opt for a freestanding style with a flat back and attached basin that you place flush against a fence or wall in your yard, or a wall- mounted style that is self-contained and hangs directly on the wall. If you want to add a fountain to an existing wall, you’ll need to add some type of fountain mask to the wall and a basin below to catch the water. Because of the plumbing and masonry involved, it’s best to hire a professional to handle this type of project.