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Garden water feature, garden fountain

Choosing the Right Water Feature for Your Garden Style

diy garden projects modern minimalistic garden nature-inspired garden romantic cottage garden

A water feature is a charming element in any garden. It has a soothing sound and a livelihood that captures the eye. However, knowing what type of water feature to choose for your garden might be challenging. It doesn’t refer only to your preferences and the space available but also to the style of your outdoor space. So, what kind of a water feature might be most aligned with your garden’s style? This question might cross your mind as you consider different options.


DIY Garden Fountain Project

I received a message from Tarja, who wants to build a water fountain in her backyard. She was pondering the following:

”Please help me to understand how my garden style affects the choice of a garden fountain?”

The question is indeed a good one, and I suggest you consider it too before deciding on the outdoor water feature to install in your backyard.

A fountain or a water feature enhances all garden styles, whether the garden has a Nature-inspired, Modern Minimalist, or Romantic Cottage Garden style. However, the water feature must adapt its design and appearance to match these main styles. (If you want to check your garden style, please take my Garden Style Quiz HERE.)

Let’s have a quick look at some water features I have designed and some images I found to explain how the different types of water features align with the main garden styles.


Garden Water Feature Design Tips for Different Styles


Nature-inspired Garden Style


For a Nature-inspired garden, a stream or a garden pond match wonderfully, just like the ones I designed for Janne in the photos above. The stream meanders joyfully among the stones and murmurs to the lower pond.

These photos are straight after the construction, but lush, blooming vegetation soon grows on the moist edges of the pond.

The rocks and gravel are arranged to allow frogs and other small garden visitors to enter and exit the water safely.


Modern Minimalistic Garden Style

In a contemporary garden, water can flow down the surface of a shiny stainless-steel sphere or emerge as a cascade, disappearing among the stones at the base of the water feature. This type of water feature is very space-effective, and you can easily install it in a small garden or even on a terrace.

I designed this raised bed with a small minimalistic water feature in the corner of Carita’s backyard that you can see above left.

The water can also be calm on the surface and form a bottomless-looking, dark rectangular basin, reflecting the clouds above and the vegetation rising nearby.


Romantic Cottage Garden or Country Garden Style

In cottage and country gardens, a fountain is often decorative and has a nostalgic feel to it. The water feature is often pedestal-based or bowl-shaped.

The water rises from the fountain to heights, sprinkling tiny droplets in the air. Alternatively, the water could bubble into the basin from an amphora or other decorative element supported by the fountain figure.


Matching Water Feature to Your Garden Design Style

When choosing an outdoor water feature or any other feature for your garden, it’s essential to consider your style and your garden's primary style type to create a cohesive feel. When all the features in your garden match, the result is balanced and harmonious, and it feels like a designer has thoughtfully planned it.


Take action:

If you haven’t yet, please take my Garden Style Quiz. The result and style guide you’ll get will aid you in designing a cohesive dream garden for yourself.

You can always refer to the garden style guide when considering new features in your garden. The guide contains lists of garden features that enhance your garden style. For other ideas, you can use your garden style as a 'lens' and tailor the features to fit your style to create your dream garden.





Turn your Pinterest board full of garden dreams into reality with a set of solid guidelines to follow. It takes only 3 minutes, but the results will serve you for a lifetime.