Winterizing a Container Water Feature
Tips for preparing bubbling urns, potted water gardens and other containerized water features for winter.
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With the temperature dropping and a freeze on the way, it's time to prepare your water features for the winter. Follow these tips for getting a container fountain ready for the cold season.
Drain the Water Out of the Container. A low-tech way of draining the water is to siphon it out. Just place a hose in the vase, run it out into the yard or garden, and suck on the hose with your mouth until the water begins to flow. So long as the hose outlet is below the level of the water feature, gravity will work in your favor.
A faster way to drain the water is to install a submersible pump. Just attach a hose to the threaded outlet of the pump, drop the pump in the basin, and plug it in.
If you don't own a submersible pump, you can actually use the pump that's already in place to accomplish the same thing. Just disconnect the water line that runs from the pump where it connects to the vase above and connect the power to the pump. The water from the container will drain into the basin below, and in no time at all, the entire water feature will be empty.
Remove the Pump. Clean the pump and store it in a safe place, such as the garage or garden shed, for the winter.
Prepare the Container for the Winter. There may be some water left in the basin of the container. Soak it up with a towel because even a small amount of water, if left to freeze, could crack the vessel. If the container is particularly valuable and may break with winter's freeze-and-thaw cycles, move it indoors for the season. Have a friend help you move the pot inside if it's too heavy to move on your own.
A beautiful water feature has a calming effect on the psyche, but there's nothing more frustrating than when it springs a leak....