Water Features for Any Budget

Water features can help turn your landscape into something special, providing a focal point and attracting wildlife. Dive into these water features and come up with some great ideas for your own backyard.

Water feature pond similar to an infinity pool

Vanishing-Edge Pond

This pond water feature is a cost-effective alternative to the infinity pool. \"The homeowner wanted to capture the views without the expense of a vanishing-edge swimming pool,\" says landscape designer Scott Cohen. \"The solution was to build a vanishing-edge pond with a bridge that crosses over to a patio. The cascading fall into the spa from under the bridge appears to be spilling over from the pond.\" Photo by Scott Cohen.

Outdoor Living Room

The elements of fire and water merge here with a fireplace tucked near the pool, doubling the area's functionality as a gathering spot. Photo by Scott Cohen.

Stairway Fountain

An understated fountain is incorporated into the stairs and path of a paved walkway, creating the element of surprise. A boulder anchors one end of the stream, while at the other end, a basin captures the water, recycling it back to the rock.

Pond Niche

This bamboo-and-stone water feature is tucked away in the corner of a small backyard, creating an intimate gathering place off to the side.

Orb Fountains

These orbs-turned-bubbling-fountains are just one of the elements in a cottage garden filled with tricks to extend the space. For added fun, consider transforming a bowling ball or two into your very own miniature orb fountain.

Half-Moon Pond

A semi-circular pond is integrated into this entertaining space at the edge of the patio.

Aquatic Playspace

The steep slope of this property created drainage and space issues, says Scott. The solution was to cut into the slope and construct a retaining wall at the rear of the pool. The wall creates a focal point for the pool. The spa was raised three feet, enlarging the patio space, and now makes an excellent swim-up bar. Photo by Scott Cohen.

Cape Cod Pool

Tired of the concrete slab that is your pool? Flagstone paving around this pool adds sophisticated flair. Tie the whole landscape together by adding similarly-colored rock in nearby garden beds.

Bubbling Containers

An easy way to create an inexpensive fountain is to convert a garden pot — any size — into a bubbling water feature. Place it on an apartment terrace or in a nook on your patio.

Asian-Influenced Copper Basin

A simple fountain makes a bold statement. Water trickles through an Asian-influenced bamboo spout into the copper basin below.

Hip to be Square

This multi-tiered fountain was added to a yard designed for an active sports-minded family. Included in the makeover were a putting green, a kids' play zone and a bocce-ball area.

Double-Duty Spa

Multitasking water features, such as this spa, provide dramatic interest and enhance the waterside experience. The homeowner is able to enjoy the sounds of a waterfall while soaking in the whirlpool. Photo by Scott Cohen.

Formal Affair

This formal fountain built into a wall incorporates the nautical theme with its seashell-shaped water basin. An urn with a potted evergreen softens the stark hardscape surroundings.

Salvaged Bubbler

If you have an old garden ornament that's collecting dirt, give it new life by transforming it into a bubbler. Here, a professional mason drilled a hole through this piece reclaimed from a church. A pump was placed at the base and hidden with tumbled rock. Voila — a brand new water feature.

Kid-Friendly Fountain

Avoid potential dangers for exploring children and pets with this pondless feature complete with a recirculating waterfall.

Portable Pond

This pond has an easy-to-disassemble quality that's attractive from your wallet's standpoint. If you have to relocate to another city, move this one with you.

Deck Fountain on a Dime

Looking for a easy-to-assemble and inexpensive water feature? Tuck this small pool in the corner of a deck.

Poolside Chatter

Screening views was the big challenge as this lot backs up to three other rear yards. \"The homeowner wanted to hide the roof lines without making the yard feel small\", says designer Scott Cohen. \"The solution was to extend the pergola into a trellis that framed the back of the pool. The added texture provides the screening we wanted, and the yard feels private, lush and textured.\" Photo by Scott Cohen.

Stonehenge Water Feature

Paul Wrona designed this distinctive Stonehenge-like water feature for homeowners who are world travelers. Paul's tip: Always incorporate a focal point near the front entry of the house.

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