Patio Ideas

Soothing Sights and Sounds

©Association of Pool & Spa Professionals A rock garden lends color and texture to this pool's naturalistic design. The waterfall adds a soothing, refreshing note to the area.

Flowing or still, a water feature such as a pond or pool brings a feeling of serenity to a garden or patio. The idea for your patio may be to have a central focus, positioned so that indoor and outdoor areas can enjoy its sights and sounds, or it might be nestled in a secluded corner that encourages quiet contemplation. Without the agitation of a waterfall or fountain, reflecting pools are still waters of tranquility designed to mirror the natural surroundings -- branching tree limbs, for example, or even clouds sailing across the sky.

Many pools, however, incorporate waterfalls for the simple beauty that moving water can bring to a setting. Most ponds are planned with aquatic plants in mind and should be placed where there is sun for at least some of the day. When fish are to be included, care must be taken to provide a healthy and balanced environment for both plants and animals.

Water features can take on formal or informal looks. A rectangular pool edged with flagstone or brick has a formal appearance, but it can be softened with the colors and textures of items such as water lilies, a border of natural stones, or low plantings. Curving pools seem less formal and are especially attractive when integrated with a rock garden.

For more decorating ideas outside the home, see:

For more decorating ideas outside the home, see: