Your garden may already be your favorite place to relax with a good book, but you can make it even better by adding a small garden waterfall to it. Waterfalls are considered to be sources of mindfulness and tranquility in many cultures, so having one in the comfort of your own home could be very helpful in reducing stress and anxiety after long days (and weeks) at work. Take a look at our garden waterfall ideas to get inspired and design the mini waterfall of your dreams!
1. Use Small Spaces and Corners
If your garden is small and packed with plants as it is, don’t despair: you may still find some space to create a waterfall, albeit a small one. Stacking up some stones in the corner of your garden will create the base for your waterfall. Now you need to hook up a small pump to get the water trickling from the top of your stone structure, sit back, relax, and enjoy your new waterfall.
2. Waterwalls Create Waterfalls
Waterwalls are a great way to add some zen to your garden, and they’re also fairly easy to build and install. All you need for a simple waterwall is a basic pump system rigged with some PVC pipes. Add a plastic bucket to collect water, and you’re good to go. Of course, you can always spice up the design with various stones, plants, and whatever else you may want to incorporate in it.
3. Music Creates Waterfalls
You may have an old piano, guitar, or other musical instrument sitting in your garage or attic. While not all instruments may be suitable for exterior design, you may still use some of them to create an amazing waterfall. Consider taking your old piano to a desert corner of your garden, installing a water pump on top of it, and surrounding it with some evergreen plants.
4. Use Existing Water Bodies
Do you have a pond in your garden already? If so, you can turn it into an even more attractive waterscape by adding a waterfall to it. There’s a number of ways to do that, and you can put all your creativity to good use and create a unique waterfall design with bricks, pieces of wood, stones, and maybe even flower pots or an aquarium. Unleash your inner creative spirit and decorate your garden with a one-of-a-kind waterfall!
5. Build an Eco-Friendly Waterfall
Take a look at whatever junk you may have laying forgotten in the corners of your shed, and try to incorporate it into your future waterfall design. You can create a great garden waterfall even with things that seem to have nothing to do with waterfalls or water, for that matter. For instance, you can use old gardening or cooking tools, such as shovels or spatulas, to create a very unconventional multi-level waterfall.
6. Bring In Some Metal
While metal isn’t necessarily the best material to go with water, some metals are much more resistant to rust and water corrosion than others. You can create a minimalistic waterfall with a copper wall and a basic water pump. Leave the wall as it is for a more antique look or add some lights for a cool contemporary design.
7. Let the Water Trickle
Waterfalls don’t necessarily have to be massive structures carrying lots of water. Your personal waterfall can use small amounts of water and still be a treat for your eyes and ears. Build your trickling waterfall with a couple of wooden supports and a PVC pipe with multiple holes in it. Let the water flow into the pipe, and it will spill out through the holes, trickling to the ground. You can control the intensity of your waterfall by adding more holes and experimenting with different hole sizes.
8. Water Is Falling Into Your Pool
If your garden is already accommodating a pool or a hot tub, there may not be enough space left for a waterfall. The good news is that your existing artificial water body can be used to host a waterfall. Use any design you like to create a small waterfall and direct it into your pool. You’ll probably want to take the pool design and surroundings into account when designing your waterfall to create a harmonic and beautiful new structure.
9. A Wine Bottle Waterfall
If you have a large collection of wine bottles (or any other glass bottles, really), you have a great opportunity to create a sophisticated bottle waterfall. You’ll need to make some holes in the bottles for the water to come in, which may require professional tools and skills. However, the end result is well worth it, as you can combine the bottles with rocks, stones, plant pots, or metal objects to build a truly unique garden waterfall.
10. Waterfalls Hiding in Pots
Gardens with very limited space can still become home to a waterfall with the help of a few tricks. One of them is to use a large ceramic pot or vase as the base of the waterfall. You place the water pump inside the pot and have the water fall back into it, so it’s a very efficient design. As a bonus, you can make the waterfall even more unique by painting something on the pot. Depending on your pot and pump, you may end up with a fountain rather than a waterfall, but it will still provide the atmosphere associated with waterfalls.
11. Stairs Turn into Waterfalls
If you have some stairs in your garden, you can transform them into an elegant waterfall in no time. One of the best ways to do that is to place a watering can on every stair in such a way that the water dripping from the top can will end up in the bottom one. Chaining up the cans like that will create an unusual waterway that will end at the last stair, creating a larger waterfall. You can also use vases, pots, or buckets instead of watering cans, but you’ll have to connect them with pipes, which might look cumbersome.
12. Ponds and Waterfalls
It’s not common to have multiple water bodies in a garden or backyard, but if you do have several ponds, you can connect them with waterfalls. Of course, this design idea works best if your ponds are situated at different levels, but you can use more powerful water pumps to create small garden waterfalls between ponds at even heights. Take a look at other ideas on our list to add a backdrop and decorations to your waterfall.
13. Set Up Some Pipes
Sometimes you may not want to invest a lot into a waterfall, or not have a lot of space to work with in the first place. In that case, you may want to consider creating a waterfall with nothing more than some pipes and a water pump. Go with pipes for a more industrial look, or use old bathroom taps if you want a waterfall with an unusual design. Installing a vessel such as a vase or ceramic pot for water collection at the base of your waterfall will create a more sophisticated, refined look.
14. Waterfall from a Fence
Some gardens are surrounded by plain-looking fences which aren’t really that pleasant to look at. If you happen to face such a fence from time to time, you may try spicing it up with a small waterfall. One of the best ways to do that is by hooking up some watering cans to the fence at different heights and angles and letting the water flow down through multiple cans. The beauty of this waterfall is in its simplicity: you don’t even need a water pump for it to function. Just pour some water into the top can and watch it fall down for some minutes. If you put a bucket under the last can, you’ll be able to collect the water and reuse it later.
15. Art for Sophisticated Waterfalls
Garden waterfalls may be simplistic structures that are quite easy to build and install, but they can also get more creative and complicated in the blink of an eye. If you have a soft spot for art, you may want to incorporate a statue or a painting into your waterfall design. Statues work best for this purpose, but if you have set your sights on a particular picture or painting, you can figure out a way to use it in a waterfall design without ruining it. If you have no idea as to what your dream artsy waterfall would look like, you can visit your local home improvement store which may carry special statues with dedicated holes for water distribution.
16. Bamboo Waterfalls
Bamboo is a wood that is traditionally associated with ‘zen,’ mindfulness, and wisdom. If you already have an East-themed garden, a bamboo waterfall would undoubtedly be a great fit for it. If not, you can probably still figure out how to make a bamboo garden waterfall work with the existing environment. Use some bamboo poles to build a vertical wall, and place some of them horizontally to let the water flow from the top. Make sure that the poles you get have been subjected to protective treatment so that it wouldn’t start rotting immediately.
17. It’s All Downhill from Here
Hills are an ideal base for a waterfall because they basically imitate the structure of one. All you have to do is add a steady flow of water to the existing hill in your garden, and there you have your own mini waterfall. If your hill is steep enough, you can simply let the water fall down from it. Otherwise it is necessary to add some artificial elements, such as rocks, to control the flow and actually make the water reach the bottom of the hill.
18. Dream Big
All previous paragraphs described rather compact waterfall ideas that can be implemented even in small garden spaces. However, you can also go big and build a waterfall that is up to ten feet tall. Obviously, the simpler designs like the flower pot and watering can ones are no longer viable when creating such a big waterfall, so you’ll have to work with rocks and maybe metal. The higher the final structure, the more attention you need to pay to its stability and safety, so simply stacking stones on top of one another may not do the job in this case. But be sure that the result of your efforts is going to be well worth all the trouble because larger garden waterfalls tend to look amazing, especially if given enough space to shine.
19. Light Makes Everything Better
Maybe you have already built a waterfall according to a seemingly great design you or somebody else came up with. The problem is, it doesn’t look as beautiful or impressive as you thought (or hoped) it would. Before you hurry off to dismantle it and give up on the idea of having a waterfall altogether, try decorating it with lights. Lighting up your waterfall may not be of much help at daytime, but you’d be surprised at the miracles proper lighting can work in the evening or at night.
20. Truck It Up
Cars are probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of waterfall design, but you can actually use a car body as a base for your future waterfall. Old trucks seem to work particularly well for this purpose, but you can use any car you can get your hands on. Don’t forget to give the car body an anti-corrosion treatment before you install it in your garden. Otherwise you’ll have to deal with a lot of rust very soon. If you experiment with the lighting and the direction of water flowing out of the car, you can produce some fascinating visual effects.
21. Copper Meets Water
Copper pipes are very flexible and also reasonably resistant to corrosion from water and age. This means that you can use them in creative waterfall designs and achieve great results. Copper pipes are often used in various structures used to transport water, and they remain hidden in the background. Make your waterfall stand out by exposing the pipes and centering the whole design around them. As the pipes age, they are going to develop their own character under the influence of water and the weather conditions in your garden, adding a certain charm to your waterfall.
22. Go High-Tech
Most garden waterfalls are powered by water pumps, which in their turn are powered by electricity. Since it’s not always easy to plug in a device that’s situated in your garden, you can make a forward step and have your waterfall powered by solar panels. This will not only make your waterfall eco-friendly, but also allow you to experiment freely with the location, shape, and size of your waterfall. And if you’re particularly into high tech solutions, you can even try to incorporate the solar panels into the design of your waterfall for additional flair.
23. Mix the Opposite Elements
It may seem counterintuitive to have your garden waterfall situated near a fireplace, but fire and water do work together surprisingly well to create a mesmerizing visual presence. Such a waterfall is probably going to be pretty difficult to build, and you’ll most likely need professional help, but the resulting structure will stay in your garden for decades, bringing warmth, peace, and quiet to you and your family.
24. Don’t Ignore the Corners
The corners between the stairs and the exterior walls of your home are a great place for hosting a waterfall, albeit not an obvious one. Find some nice looking rocks, arrange them into a visually pleasing combination, and have water flow down from it. There you go, you now have your own waterfall decorating the entrance to your home. Alternatively, place a small waterfall in the far corner of your garden.
25. Drifting in the Waterfall
Driftwood is an excellent exterior design element with a lot of character. It is easy to think of an engaging backstory for it as you set up a driftwood waterfall in your garden. Combined with some rocks or evergreen pot plants, a piece of driftwood may become the soul and essence of your waterfall, creating a unique atmosphere in your garden. Make sure that your driftwood piece is covered with special protective chemical solutions before you use it in your waterfall, or else you may have to deal with rotting wood very soon.
Now that you’ve seen our garden waterfall ideas, you can build on them and create your own fascinating designs. I hope you enjoyed this article, and if you did, please take some time to share it so that your friends can benefit from it too. Also, feel free to tell me what you liked about the article in the comments section.