Choosing The Right Water Feature

Custom built water features by Architectural Landscape Design Inc.

Who doesn’t love the sound of babbling water and the beauty of clean, clear water running over stone? Perhaps a small pond with a suitably sized waterfall is something you have dreamed of?


It may be hard to decide what size pond or water feature you want. ALD can help you find a size that works best for the space you want to dedicate. Smaller ponds may be more realistic and will be easier to maintain over the years, especially if you want to do a lot of the maintenance yourself.

Like any water feature the larger, it is, the more expensive it is going to be to construct. Maintenance costs can vary depending on the features you have in your pond. Waterfall pumps and other devices add to cost and might need some replacement parts or maintenance over the years.


A well-placed fountain can be soothing and add a lot of beauty and charm as well as provide some water for birds. The type of fountain you get can get as elaborate as you want. Perhaps you want your fountain in the middle or on the side of a larger pond?

Fountains that have a lower fall will be quieter and have less splash factor involved than those that fall from a more extreme height. The sound is important to a lot of people that are trying to get a certain effect. Talk to a professional and describe what you want to hear and have in mind so you have the exact fountain you want.

Style Of Your Home

There are all types of fountains and ponds out there. It is crucial to choose one that goes with look and feel of your home or business. A Roman-style fountain might look quite out of place in front of an Arts and Crafts Style or Craftsman home or business. A natural stone waterfall and pond, however, would go with this theme.

Contemporary homes may choose cut marble or lighter colored stones for a great look. Ultimately the choice is yours as the homeowner, and it may be that your living area envelopes many different styles. A pond that looks more like it has always been there might appeal more to older homes than a pond or water feature that looks mostly manufactured.

custom cut basalt water feature
custom cut basalt water feature- Architectural Landscape Design Inc.

Aquatic Life

There are a lot of plants that you can choose from for a pond or similar. The one thing that must be said is that a lot of pond owners sometimes have plants that they only have in their pond certain times of year. Temperature and freezing can affect some plants, but you can enjoy them certain times of the year.

Fish and other aquatic life are optional of course but can help keep a good balance in your pond, and they can be fun to feed. Common gold fish are of course the least expensive and easiest to acquire, and they reproduce rapidly. On the other hand, they do not have the exotic beauty, you get with species such as Koi which can be much more expensive.

Protecting your investment in aquatic life can be difficult at times. Large water birds can quickly wipe out even a healthy population of fish if they are small enough to be caught. This means that if you take the plunge and buy more expensive fish, you may want to be prepared to experience some loss if the area is not well protected. This is one reason many people opt for less expensive or native fishes for ponds that are easy for larger birds to find.


Smaller pond pumps can sometimes be run quite easily off of solar energy. Pumps that can be hooked into existing electrical system are more powerful for your dollar, so larger water features and ponds are best done where you have a good source of power. Technically you can probably get power to anywhere one way or another, but the difficulty and amount required is going to add to the expense and time required to create your water feature.

Learning Basic Maintenance

Unless you have a very regular groundskeeper or weekly landscaping service you are going to want to know how to perform basic maintenance on your water features. Pump filters can clog if you get a lot of debris. It is important to remember to remove major debris whenever you see it. If you seem to have a large build up of smaller debris, then a tool like a pool skimmer can be used to keep your water feature in great condition and protect your investment.

Adding On

Some water features can be added to without a lot of trouble. For example, a pond can have a waterfall or stream added to it later or vice versa. This is something to consider when you are planning even your first water feature. Stonework can be difficult and costly to move so be sure of where you want things to go.


Some people choose to drain water features during the winter months. Fountains and moving water freeze much less rapidly than slow or predominately still waters. ALD can help you figure out what is best when it comes to preparing your water features for the colder months.

Why You Should Choose A Pro

You can get pond liners, kits, and pumps at a major home improvement store. While this may seem like it saves time and money, the truth is that you are getting mass produced components that may be of questionable quality. Without experience, you may make more mistakes than you would like.

A lot of heavy duty pumps and equipment require knowledge to wire in correctly. Water and electricity can be a dangerous combination as well. Getting the look you want might take a lot more planning than you would like as well. A professional can save you time and money over the years because you won’t have to deal with faulty or low-quality equipment or struggle to get the exact results you want.