Make rain music Install a unique water feature
RUN A RAIN CHAIN FROM YOUR GUTTER
there’s nothing like the sound of rain on a tin roof – from a tinkle, to a splosh, to the pounding of a summer storm. But if you don’t have a tin roof, you can still delight in these summer sonics by replacing a drainpipe from your gutter with a rain chain. And you can gather the rainwater that has not gushed into the stormwater system by channelling it into a barrel or bowl and using it later on your garden. Practical? Yes. Aesthetic? Also yes. Melodic? Absolutely!
1, 2 IT’S A RAIN GAIN
Establish a rain-chain garden in a difficult corner with plants that love the lingering wetness. The splashes from the rain chain will hit the leaves then dribble into the soil, creating a little oasis in a bleak spot. Meanwhile, a basin or barrel, or even a birdbath, collects the rest of the water.
3 peaceful, tranquil and waiting for the music
If you want to create an Asian-inspired garden, a rain chain falling into a shallow pond gives it a quintessential Japanese feel. Add a stone pathway – or ‘dry stream bed’ – mondo grass, juniper, clipped balls of box and maples for a woodland effect.
4 Waiting for your cup to runneth over
The cups soften the noise of rain falling down a chain and each creates an individual cascade of water. There’s nothing left for a birdbath unfortunately, but it does provide a pretty perch!
5 Runs rings around a run-of-the-mill downpipe
You can opt for a simple rain chain without the fancy cups or funnels, but you can add interest with the design and structure of the links.
6 mix the rain music with Heavy metal
Include big, rugged and rusting rain chains in a sustainable garden bed. Plants that will benefit from the water run-off i nclude the strappy-leafed New Zealand flax, the big-leafed Indian rhubarb and Przewalski’s Golden Ray (Ligularia przewalskii) with their dainty yellow flowers on long stalks.
2 WATER-LOVING PAPYRUS WILL ENJOY BEING SPLASHED WITH WATER. COLEUS BRINGS SUNSHINE TO YOUR GARDEN EVEN WHEN THE CLOUDS ARE OVERHEAD. ELEPHANT’S EARS LEAVES ARE WELL DESIGNED TO SPILL RAINWATER INTO THE SOIL.
THE IDEA OF A RAIN CHAIN COMES FROM JAPAN, WHERE THEY HAVE BEEN USED FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS. THEY ARE INCORPORATED IN MANY BUDDHIST TEMPLE DESIGNS WITH THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING WATER MUSIC AND PROMOTING PEACE AND TRANQUILLITY. 5