Bring the ever-changing element of water into your garden
Whether it’s a simple shallow pool or a cascading fountain, there is no better way to bring life, energy and ambience into a garden than with water, says landscape designer Trudy Crerar, who often includes water features in her designs. “Water brings with it movement, creates light and shadows, a soothing space in the daytime and, with the skilful placement of light, an other-worldliness at night.”
THE RIGHT SIZE
Even if you don’t have the space or budget for a full-scale fountain, a small water feature can still be effective.
“There are no rules on size,” Trudy says. “It may be as simple as using a decorative shallow bowl, carefully placed to provide water for birds in summer. I have a stone bowl that our local kingfishers use. Or it may be a moat-like pool running the length of a house.”
For very small spaces, Trudy recommends selecting a handcrafted piece, big enough to house a small submersible pump that can be disguised by stones. Alternatively a free-standing textured wall above a reservoir that holds water at the base may be suitable where space is limited. What’s important is placing water where it can be seen and appreciated as part of your outdoor living space, or where it can be viewed from the house.
THE ORDER OF THINGS
You definitely don’t want leaks, so make sure you’ve got the basics covered, then decorate to the theme of the garden, says Trudy. “For example, I gilded the interior of a fountain recently for a Moroccan-style garden. The glow from the water was intense at night.” If the garden has a more natural look, then a small bubbling stream may be more appropriate.
Whatever you choose, make sure you cater for waterproofing and reticulation. “What lurks below the surface is vital,” she says.