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Look What We Did This Weekend!

posted by: manature on 03.03.2008 at 09:56 am in Florida Gardening Forum

First we did this:


Then we did this:


And finally we ended up with this:


Another view:


I have wanted an Ali Baba fountain by our entryway since the day we moved into this house, nearly four years ago. The big blue urn (which I got at a garage sale for $9!!!!) has been sitting in this spot, just waiting!

Last weekend, we decided to build it for our 22nd anniversary present to each other. Mark ran the electrical wiring through the wall from my art studio to the outside last Saturday.

This past Saturday, we started. Because we weren't using a kit (which nicely comes with all parts that fit properly), we had to improvise. Mark is very good at fabrication. I did buy a new tub to go into the ground, so that was Step 1. Digging a LEVEL hole for the tub.

Step 2 was to fabricate a grating that would be sturdy enough to hold the weight of a very large, heavy ceramic urn filled with water. We ended up using a left over white wire shelf from a closet. Mark cut it to fit the top of the tub, and then we added a layer of mesh to help keep smaller rocks from falling through.

Step 3 was to put the pump inside the tub (Home Depot, $35) and run copper tubing up through the hole in the urn. Mark didn't want to seal the hole with silicon, preferring a "mechanical" seal that can be retightened if he ever needs to get into the tub, move the urn for something, etc. He spent some time with fittings and gaskets, etc, to fabricate that. Then he had the pipes in place, running from the pump to the inside of the urn. (Inside the urn, he just used a short piece of PVC pipe. It doesn't show.)

Step 4, sit the urn in place and adjust any flow issues. The water has to weep down the sides of the urn and return to the tub. If any sprays outside of that circle, it will drain the container dry and burn up the pump.

Step 5, cover the grating with decorative rocks, and VOILA! A never emtpying Ali Baba jug of water outside my door. I was expecting it to be a visual focal point, but I was surprised at how nice it sounds, too. I had thought it wouldn't make much noise, since there's no real splashing like from a fountain into a pond, but I was wrong. It sounds great!

If you would like one of these but don't have the time, patience or skill to do the fabricating part, you can buy kits that contain the urn, pump, tub, grating, and piping. I saw some at Home Depot last year that look very nice, though they were not as large as ours. They ran about $80.

Hope it gives you some ideas. Will share more pictures as the plants mature around this.



clipped on: 03.03.2008 at 04:23 pm    last updated on: 03.03.2008 at 04:24 pm