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DIY: A Terra-Cotta Fountain

It's safe to say that I'm a little obsessed with water features in gardens. Whether it's a koi pond or a granite fountain, I'm all for it. So, when I found this Martha Stewart post on making a backyard fountain out of economical materials, I knew that it would be a hit with Casa readers. You can even make it more eco chic by using gray water for the water in your fountain.

What You'll Need

  • Three terra-cotta pots that can stack top to bottom, as seen in the photo and diagram, for the inside body of your fountain
  • Two supporting pots
  • Foam sealant (even better, use a green foam sealant)
  • One-inch diameter plastic tubing, a little shorter than the height of your pots (you can trim it after you've built the fountain)
  • Water pump
  • A power cord that will connect to the pump
  • Flow-control valve
  • Terra-cotta feet for the bottom pot

To find out how to make it,


  • Collect three display pots and two support pots. They can be as big or small as you like, as long as the tops and bottoms correspond.
  • Plug the drainage hole of the largest pot with foam sealant. Place the pot on a level surface. Cut a length of 1-inch-diameter flexible plastic tubing that, when inserted into the pump, extends through both support pots and 6 inches above the base of the smallest display pot. Insert the tubing into the pump.
  • Now, fit the pump into the base pot, running the power cord over the rim, toward a grounded exterior outlet. Turn the larger support pot upside down over the pump, propping it on the terra-cotta feet to allow water to flow underneath. Loop the tubing through the drainage hole, and spray foam sealant around tubing to seal.
  • Position the second display pot, then loop the tubing through hole. Seal with foam.
  • Repeat these steps with the remaining support and display pots. Add a flow-control valve a few inches from the end of the tube. Add water until the pots are overflowing; plug the pump into the outlet, and adjust the pressure as needed.
  • Host a garden party so your friends and neighbors can ooh and ahh over your new fountain!
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