Monday, May 19, 2008

Fountains Rock.

If you are planning a garden remodel and looking for inspiration or focal points, pay a visit to The Garden Gallery in Old Towne Orange. The gallery itself is one expansive patio without a single square foot of turf--an excellent example of elegant, drought-tolerant gardening. A paved path winds through a sea of pea gravel with beautiful container pots and sculptures, an awesome visual effect that can be recreated in the typical tiny Southern Californian yard.

Part of what makes the the dry, grass-free patio gallery feel so lush is the huge inventory of ceramic pot fountains currently on display, most handcrafted on site by artist Richard Gudin:

Some of the more affordable fountains are made from mass-manufactured ceramic pots converted to fountains by Richard. The effect is not quite as artistic, but $240 fits a lot easier into my budget than $700 - 1,000. Unfortunately, Matt is not as enthusiastic about a garden fountain as I am, and with our recent wedding and newly formed commitment to joint spending/saving the ceramic pot fountain is going to have to remain a mental note until next spring.

As my boss always reminds me, every time you hear "we can't" it's an opportunity for innovation. I can't have an artistic container fountain, but I CAN build one, right? Our yard has been a dust bowl for months, and we're finally putting in our own sea of pea gravel and seeding a small section of grass this weekend. It's the perfect time to plan for a water feature, and the internet is overflowing with helpful tips. All I need are:

  • Electricity
  • A powerful pump
  • Small quantity of hose
  • An object to convert into a fountain

I thought of ripping off Richard's artistry entirely by making my own ceramic pot fountain, but in addition to making me feel like a creative fraud I'm not sure a high-end ceramic pot fits into my budget. I've decided to dig a hole, install a 5 gallon bucket as a reservoir, line it with thick plastic, place a sturdy screen on top, pile up a few rocks, and finish it off with a boulder already in my yard. I will attempt to drill a hole into the boulder for the tube...I haven't decided what kind of tip to use but I may just hide it under a pile of rocks to complete the natural look.

Inspiration pics:

Ooh, if I could find a dish large enough I think I'd go for this look:

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