Garden Fountains – A Gardener’s Guide

Garden Fountains – History

Throughout history, artisans have taken great pleasure in sculpting and creating vast works of beauty to enhance the appearance of a building, park, or entire city. One of the most popular consists of fountains, which enjoyed extensive historical use throughout Europe before becoming more globally popular in later centuries.

Unlike statues and other forms of art, fountains used to serve a dual purpose. First and foremost over aesthetic appeal was the practicality of a fountain as a source of water. The best way to describe its use is likening it to a giant public sink. The Romans popularized fountains and usually built them at the ends of aqueducts to provide citizens with a source of fresh water.

These constantly-flowing sources of fresh water had a significant impact in improving health and sanitation in cities in which they were built. Quick access to the aqueduct fountain allowed people to keep clean, gather water for cooking and to generally relax.

To highlight the importance of fountains, it was common for artists to sculpt elaborate fountainheads that often took the form of one of the gods or an important past ruler. By doing so they paid homage to these figures by involving them directly in the lives of those living nearby.

Garden Fountains – Modern Use

Fountains have since evolved to new levels. It is common to see them in important urban areas, as decorations in parks, or in the popular form of garden fountains. It is these garden fountains that is the focus of this discussion. Although no longer used for sanitary purposes, the aesthetic appeal of garden fountains cannot be disputed.

Technically, a fountain is a construct in which water emanates from a source into a pool or basin before being drained away. It is often the case that the water used for this is recycled to prevent waste, especially in home gardens where a constant source of new water can become very expensive.

Originally, the fountain’s source of water was supplied from a higher elevation to create gravitational pressure that would send the water along its way. More modern fountains, especially garden fountains, are almost exclusively of the cycle system variety. These are both more practical and easier to maintain, with water only being added at need due to natural evaporation.

Garden Fountains – Suggestions

Opting to install garden fountains in your yard is a great idea, and can very effectively enhance the beauty of your home. There are many options available as far as design and appearance is concerned, which means that you can usually find something to suit your specific desire or taste. There are several major varieties that you can consider:

· Pond Fountains – These garden fountains populate a pond with fresh water, which is then recycled into the system for re-use. This is one of the most popular varieties, and also tends to be the largest for practical home use. The addition of a fountain to a pond to keep the water fresh and flowing can help keep nearby plant species and any fish living inside healthy.

It’s also hard to ignore the sheer beauty of a pond fountain. This beauty isn’t limited to visual, either, due to the relaxing and therapeutic nature of water sounds. Listening to a fountain tinkle away in your yard can be a very rewarding and invigorating experience.

· Standalone – Standalone fountains are those that you often see positioned in the middle of a garden, on a patio or anywhere else where larger garden fountains are neither practical nor efficient. You can often find large, elaborate standalone fountains that are built upwards instead of outwards to keep space in mind.

· Wall Fountains – A wall fountain is usually very small due to the requirement that it be mounted on a wall itself. Excessive weight could cause structural damage or make mounting difficult. These garden fountains always employ a recycling system so that the water need not be continually supplied.

This variety is definitely worth considering for limited-space areas like patios, walkways and even apartment balconies. One popular trend is to place a pair of wall fountains that mirror each other on each side of a more elaborate decoration to help it stand out.

Garden Fountains – Concluding Information

The appeal of garden fountains is very great, which makes them the perfect addition to any landscaping effort you might be considering. By successfully integrating garden fountains into a pond system or as standalones in the garden itself, you can create an environment that you and your family will enjoy relaxing in.

Garden fountains make a great gardening aid to people trying to attract wildlife. Low fountains can provide a source of fresh drinking water for local animals, whereas other varieties like the wall-mounts or standalones can offer water to birds. In this way, garden fountains can greatly increase the presence of wildlife in your garden.

Copyright (c) 2008 – Brant Florist

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