Bold Water Designs

Winter Stream

I struggle to sit still some days while browsing through water feature examples. I just get so excited that I want to go out and build each and every one! Combinations of water and fire excite me, and then images of frozen water features send me into awe. Some natural water features make me wish I could jump inside the picture and explore the sunny stream while the formal ones remind me of an elegant celebration.

Here are a few ideas to get you started on your water feature adventure.

Winter Stream
Winter streams are so beautiful!

BOLD Design Ideas

Try something out of the ordinary! If you are working with a designer, share some of your bold design ideas with him or her. This will give your designer a direction to go as the plan is created. There is nothing that is more exciting than fire and water. The mixture of these two elements are contradictory, like an oxymoron. In many cases, fire is extinguished by water. In other cases such as a forest fire, the fire engulfs the water. The two don’t normally associate with each other. This contradictory nature brings a thrill to the viewers. It is an element that brings tension and excitement. There is no hiding this feature, it will be the focal point every time. To compliment a feature like this, use other plants and construction materials that are more subtle. If you add too many bold features, the landscape becomes overwhelming and overbearing. Create a balance with bold and subtle elements that support each other.

Other bold options include using large boulders. The bigger the better! These boulders can really bring your water feature to life. They are masculine and demand attention, yet seem natural. In most cases, three large boulders will appear more natural than 10 smaller ones.

Large boulders
Large boulders are a good, BOLD design feature!

Consider leaving your water feature on through the winter. The moving water in most cases will keep the feature from completely freezing over, but in temperatures below freezing, ice formations will begin to appear with magnificent beauty.

Finally, if you are going to install a pond, make it big enough to have a few Koi fish and a bridge. Fish add life and movement while the bridge invites viewers to explore the pond from another angle. Anything that brings you up close to the pond will increase your enjoyment of the feature. Another way to do this, is to bring the pond right up to the edge of the patio. If you have a low wood deck, bring the pond about a foot under the deck to make it look twice the size it really is. If you have ever heard of an infinity pool, this is a similar concept.

Pond and stepping stones
Notice the stepping stones along the right side of this pond.

Take these concepts and build upon them.  Enjoy the journey as you begin to plan your yard in a bold way. Next step, decide upon natural or formal.  Learn about them in my article next week!

In the meantime, check out more water feature ideas here!

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