The soothing sounds of a creek, the smooth stillness of a pond -- these water garden ideas are as wonderful to look at as they are to experience. Streams and ponds integrate easily into the landscape, instilling a sense of balance and natural beauty. The photos and ideas below will inspire you to seek this natural beauty in your own garden.
A pond of black, still water perfectly reflects the shapes of tall, slender tree trunks in this serene grouping of woodland plants. Surrounding the pond, spring-flowering hybrid azaleas in every imaginable shade of pink drop their delicate paperlike petals onto the pond’s surface. Water always adds another dimension to a garden, though the manner in which it is used may vary greatly. Here, the water’s reflection of the garden rivals the garden itself for capturing the observer’s interest.
When its use is well planned, streams and ponds can achieve an enormous effect in a relatively small space. In this water garden idea, a pond uses the rugged beauty of slate boulders to create a dream of an alpine landscape. A small waterfall spills between the dark gray rocks, while the boulders themselves play host to a plethora of plants that are small in scale but bold in color.
Look to the past for inspiration for your water garden ideas. In this water garden, a stone statue gazes over a fountain spilling water into plant-lined pond. This water garden demonstrates the grand principles of design on a relatively small scale, making those who enjoy it feel connected with centuries of garden lovers before them.
Serene and calm, or breathtaking and dramatic, there are no limits to the ideas a home gardener can explore when it comes to water gardens. Whether you seek to mimic the scale and intensity of the ocean, or the serene placidity of a forest pond, a water garden will enhance your garden and the experience of those who enjoy it. Continue on to the next page, where you'll learn about the many plants who thrive in a watery environment.