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Ponds, Fountains, and Small Pools

Updated on December 19, 2017
viryabo profile image

Discovering the therapeutic benefit of indoor water features with my aquarium, I soon found that tabletop waterfalls gave me the same effect

Water, flowing over small rocks into a pebble lined pond, moving gently from one patio pond to another through a canal, linked by a pretty stone bridge, its fine drizzles spraying moisture loving plants; cooling the surrounding air and providing a beautiful view at the same time.

Patio Fountain & Small Pond
Patio Fountain & Small Pond | Source

Small Backyard Ponds

Ponds and pools have a cooling effect when built on or around patios and finding space to build one is a great idea if you have plans to remodel your outdoor rooms. Because water has a profound effect on most people, whatever space is available, a homeowner can always find a spot for a small pool or a patio water fountain.

The size of available space should not be an issue and neither should its configuration. For tight spaces, go vertical. For instance, a wall fountain with slowly cascading water that empties into a small narrow pond.

For larger outdoor rooms, there is enough space to go horizontal, like building a still water pool that's decorative and natural, with water lilies and exotic fish.

Brilliant Pond Design Ideas


Moving water is always a dramatic sight to behold and even the smallest and simplest water fountain installed within a patio adds a soothing and refreshing sound dimension to even the tiniest of outdoor rooms.

The rushing sounds and movement of patio water fountains also provide great sound masking effects on noise generated from neighbors' homes or a busy road's traffic.

There are three categories of patio fountains:

  1. Spray fountains
  2. Splash fountains
  3. Wall fountains also referred to as spill fountains

Spray fountains use assorted fountain heads and will send water upwards in various shapes and heights. They produce anything from small lacy mists to massive water columns.

Splash fountains have some sculptured piece where water is forced up, through it, and then cascades down. These types are almost always professionally produced by artists and sculptors. They can also be purchased from garden and landscape supply stores.

Wall or spill fountains sends a lone stream of water from a fountainhead falling into a pool, or into a series of tiered decorative troughs.

Great and Compact Fountain Ideas

DIY Patio Pools

There are decorative garden pools available on the market that are portable, affordable and quite versatile. They can be purchased at garden and pond supply stores both online and offline.

And if you are a hands-on homeowner, you can build a backyard or patio pool by yourself. It is very easy to create a patio pond if the designs are kept simple and small.

To go a step further with creative ideas for a small pond, there will most likely some 'finds' around the home that can be recycled and converted to small pools. Here are a few examples:

Old Bathtubs - Discarded bathtubs can be installed into the ground and filled with water. Beautiful ground level flowering plants can be planted around its perimeter to give it a form of lushness. Add a few water lilies on the water's surface.

Terracotta Pots - That large clay pot sitting in the back garden with a dead plant can be converted into a water feature. Install a small spray fountain spout within it to make a small but lovely fountain set in a small patio. Plumbing works required for this and similar ideas is minimal.

Stones, Bricks, and Concrete - There are also the easy-to-build traditional patio pools made of concrete, bricks, stones, tiles and rocks. Water features built with these materials blend well in both traditional and modern patio settings.

Ready Made Ponds - There are pre-formed ponds on the market that are quite affordable and easy to install. With these, you can DIY and build it in a few hours. They are made of plastic and are often a popular choice among beginning pond builders.

How to Build with a Ready Made Pond

Patio pools look great in both formal and informal surroundings. And whether it's built with a modern theme in mind, an eclectic one, or a natural and traditional setting, all pool designs offer the opportunity to include aquatic oxygenating plants such as floating hyacinth, tropical water lilies, and water grasses.

And if the pool is built off the ground and is raised enough to sit on its edges, it can provide a beautiful home for exotic fish such as the koi or goldfish.

Calling In Landscape Experts

Garden and other outdoor ponds that are meant to appear as if placed there by mother nature are the most enjoyable to create and enjoy.

But it is no easy feat to put together rocks, grass, soil, stones, and other similar materials to ensure the pool, pond, or stream seem like the work of nature.

Natural garden pools, waterfalls, and flowing streams fall within such categories. They demand careful planning because of their sensitive designs and maintenance challenges. Plus such patio pool design ideas calls for a landscape with some aspect of natural settings.

Complex patio water features such as these are difficult to build and manage by most homeowners, and the desired effects are rarely achieved.

Because of this, such complicated patio ponds, streams, etc. are best left to the landscape architects and designers.

© 2011 viryabo

Comments Are Welcome

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    • lillygordon profile image


      6 years ago

      Great hub! The dramatic effect for the moving feature of the pond is definitely fantastic.

    • viryabo profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Once you get your patio, adding a water feature will make it the more beautiful.

      Thank you Simone, and thanks for finding time to visit, what with your huge workload.


    • viryabo profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Hi Denise, thank you, as usual for your lovely comments. Ponds, pools and such water features always adds a new dimension to outdoor rooms.

      Thanks for the visit.


    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      7 years ago from San Francisco

      Lovely Hub! Now... I MUST get me a patio first, hahaa, but then I'll have lots of ideas on how to make it a bit more hydrated!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 

      7 years ago from North Carolina

      I really enjoy your writing and I love this hub. Very peaceful. I love ponds in backyards.

    • viryabo profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      You'll love it i'm sure. The small ones are always so pretty

      Thanks for visiting suziecat7


    • viryabo profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      You'll love it i'm sure. The small ones are always so pretty

      Thanks for visiting suziecat7


    • suziecat7 profile image


      7 years ago from Asheville, NC

      I might try one of the small ones for my patio. Thanks.

    • viryabo profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Thank you Leisurelife and Leahlefler. And thank you for visiting.


    • leahlefler profile image

      Leah Lefler 

      7 years ago from Western New York

      I love water features in decks and patios. Nice hub!

    • LeisureLife profile image


      7 years ago from USA

      nice hub, thanks!


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