Modern Garden Decor: Large Outdoor Water Fountains and their Roots

The incredible architecture of a fountain allows it to provide clean water or shoot water high into air for dramatic effect and it can also serve as an excellent design feature to enhance your home. 5004-stn__56859.jpg

The primary purpose of a fountain was originally strictly functional. Residents of cities, townships and small towns utilized them as a source of drinking water and a place to wash, which meant that fountains had to be connected to nearby aqueduct or spring. Up to the late 19th century, water fountains had to be near an aqueduct or reservoir and higher than the fountain so that gravity could make the water move down or shoot high into the air. Designers thought of fountains as amazing additions to a living space, however, the fountains also served to provide clean water and honor the artist responsible for building it. Roman fountains usually depicted images of animals or heroes made of metal or stone masks. During the Middle Ages, Muslim and Moorish garden planners included fountains to create mini depictions of the gardens of paradise. The fountains seen in the Gardens of Versailles were intended to show the power over nature held by King Louis XIV of France. The Popes of the 17th and 18th centuries were extolled with baroque style fountains constructed to mark the place of entry of Roman aqueducts.

Since indoor plumbing became the standard of the day for clean, drinking water, by the end of the 19th century urban fountains were no longer needed for this purpose and they became purely ornamental. Fountains using mechanical pumps instead of gravity enabled fountains to bring recycled water into living spaces as well as create unique water effects.

Modern-day fountains function mostly as decoration for open spaces, to honor individuals or events, and compliment entertainment and recreational events.

The History of Outdoor Water Fountains

The Roman academic Pope Nicholas V (1397-1455) took the initiative to have hundreds of historic Greek writings translated into Latin. Making the city into the worthy capital of the Christian community was important to him, so he also took steps to beautify it. The decaying Roman aqueduct which had carried clean drinking water in the into the capital city from countless miles away was restored beginning in 1453 at his request. The mostra, a monumental celebratory fountain constructed by ancient Romans to mark the point of arrival of an aqueduct, was a practice also restored by Nicholas V. The interesting origins of the Trevi Fountain date back to an older water fountain he had commissioned to the architect Leon Battista Alberti. The aqueduct he had reconditioned included modifications and extensions which eventually allowed it to supply the necessary water to the Trevi Fountain as well as the renowned baroque fountains in the Piazza del Popolo and the Piazza Navona.

The One Cleaning Solution to NEVER Use On Your Landscape Fountains

In order to ensure that water fountains last a long time, it is vital to perform regular maintenance. Leaves, twigs, and bugs often find their way into fountains, so it is vital to keep yours free from such debris.

Another factor is that water that is exposed to sunlight is vulnerable to growing algae. To prevent this, take vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, or sea salt and add right into the water. Bleach can also be mixed into the water, however this is not an ideal option as it can harm birds or other animals.

No more than three-four months should go by without an extensive maintaining of a fountain. The initial step is to get rid of all of the water. When you have done this, scour inside the water reservoir with a gentle detergent. If there are any small grooves, work with a toothbrush to get each and every spot. Make sure all the soap is totally washed off.

Make sure you get rid of any calcium or plankton by taking the pump apart and scrubbing the inside properly. To make it less difficult, soak it in vinegar overnight before cleaning. Build-up can be a big headache, so use mineral or rain water over tap water, when possible, to eliminate this dilemma.

Finally, be sure to have a quick look at your fountain daily and add water if you see that the level is low. Low water levels can ruin the pump - and you do not want that!

A Real Roman Wonder: The Santa Maria Water Fountain in Cosmedin

Archaeologists and restorers alike have stumbled upon a wealth of pagan and Christian artifacts on the site of Santa Maria in Cosmedin in Rome. The celebrated marble sculpture known as the Bocca della Verità (Mouth of Truth) is located in the portico of the basilica nearby.

When the Santa Maria in Cosmedin water fountain was built in 1719, it was off the beaten track and generally unknown as a result. It was said that there was nothing worth seeing in this area, as it was abject and desolate making it an unfriendly place to visit. It was then that the Italian architect Carlo Bizzaccheri was instructed by Pope Clement XI to build a water fountain in the square outside the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin in an effort to make the area more popular. Work on the church's infrastructure commenced on on August 11, 1717. The blessing of the first rock to be placed in the foundation was followed by medals being thrown in showing the images of the Blessed Virgin, for whom the church is named, and St. John the Baptist, the patron saint of water.

Commonplace Water Fountains Seen in Japanese Landscapes

Japanese gardens usually have a water element. The Japanese water fountain is considered representative of spiritual and physical cleansing, so it is typically placed in or near the doorways of temples or homes. Since water is meant to be the focal point of a fountain, you will notice that the designs are kept very straightforward.

Many people also opt for a water fountain that includes a bamboo spout. The basin, which tends to be fashioned of stones, collects the water as it trickles down from the bamboo spout. In addition, it is important to the overall look that it appear as if it has been outdoors for a long time. So that the fountain looks at one with nature, people normally adorn it with natural stones, pretty flowers, and plants. As you can probably guess, this fountain is symbolic rather than just decorative.

For something a bit more distinctive, start with a bed of gravel, add a stone fountain, and then decorate it creatively with live bamboo and other natural elements. The point is that over time it will start to look more and more like a natural part of the surroundings, as moss slowly grows over the stones.

Wherever there is enough open space, you have the option to build a more extensive water feature.

Nice add-ons include a babbling stream or tiny pool with koi in it.

Water, however, does not have to be used in a Japanese fountain. It is okay to use representations of water in place of real water, such as sand, rocks, or natural stones. You can also gather flat stones and position them close enough together that they look like water in motion.

The Plusses of Pondless Fountains in your Garden

There are two names for this type of fountain: “disappearing” and “pondless”. The source of the water is not visible since it is below the surface of the ground. Disappearing fountains add tranquil sound effects and striking visuals to any place where people come together. It is not difficult to find the kind that is right for you, as there are so many to pick from such as millstones, ceramic urns, waterfalls, and also those with granite columns.

A disappearing fountain could be the most appropriate choice for you for a number of reasons. Any danger to anyone standing around it is eliminated since the water source is beneath ground level. That said, you will not have to stress out about the safety of your children. Additionally, due to the fact that water is located underground, none of it is lost to evaporation. Other types of fountains waste more water due to evaporation. The water source will remain uncontaminated and free of debris since it is below gound and algae will not grow in it, so you will not need to waste a lot of time cleaning it. Finally, you can install one just about anywhere because it takes up so little room.


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