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How to make a Bubble Fountain in a Pot

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A couple of weeks ago, I teased you about the DIY Bubble Fountain my hubby had made for me last summer.  I’ve finally taken a few moments to write up the instructions on how to make a Bubble Fountain in a Pot, so you can make one too!

Instructions on how to make this easy Bubble Fountain in a pot

 

Bubble Fountain in a Pot

We have a local water garden shop that is the most amazing place to go and browse.  They have 5 acres of the most beautiful ponds and streams and fountains on display.  It is so pretty, they’ve even opened up their location as a venue for parties and weddings.

I’d been wanting to add a small bubbler fountain to my side garden.  It’s where all the birds hang out (check out this recent shot of the birds.)  And I know if I can add a water feature that makes a soft flowing water noise, I will get ALL THE BIRDS, lol.

The first place I thought to go was our local Water Garden shop.  (The Hill Country Water Gardens- seriously, if you are in the Texas Hill Country and are in the market for a fancy pond or water garden, you should really visit this place.  The inspiration alone is crazy-good!)

Image source

As beautiful as this place is, their services and products aren’t cheap and are out of the price range of someone on a super tight budget.  After a significant amount of browsing, I just couldn’t find exactly what I wanted.  Plus, not a single bubble pot that I liked was less than $150 – and that was just for the pot!

After consulting with the hubby, we decided to hit our local big box hardware store and see if we could find what we needed to make our own bubble fountain.

I am so glad we did, we spent more than 3/4 less than what we would have spent had we not made our own bubbler fountain.  (If I had used a pot I already had, it would have been just the cost of the pump, tubing, and gravel.)

bubbler fountain

Pin this DIY Bubble Fountain project for later:

Supplies Needed to make your own self-contained bubbler fountain:

(you should be able to find all these items at your local big box hardware store or on Amazon)

  • Submersible pump
  • clear vinyl tubing (whatever size goes with your pump)
  • 1 small and one large waterproof pot w/ no drainage holes. (Plastic or the fake stone-looking pots)
  • something for the small pot to sit on (upside-down pot, brick or a cinder block)
  • drill and bit
  • Several medium-sized rocks
  • bag of pea gravel or small decorative river rock
  • clear waterproof silicone caulk/sealant
  • electrical supplies needed to splice the electrical cord

How to Make a Bubble Fountain in a Pot

It wasn’t easy putting instructions together since I didn’t get step-by-step photos of the project as it was happening, but the process is really simple.  I’m certain you can get an idea of what to do from the diagram below.

Instructions for the DIY Bubble Fountain:

 

how to make a fountain

 

Step 1:  Cutting and splicing the electrical cord: 

***This step is only necessary if you don’t want your cord to be seen.  If your fountain is in a corner or up against the a wall, you might be able to just drape the electric cord over the edge and hide it.  If this is the case skip to step 2.***

Drill a small hole near the bottom of the large pot.  The diameter of the hole should be just big enough for the pump power cord.  Cut the pump power cord in half – somewhere in the middle.

Thread the pump cord through the hole you drilled and splice the cord back together.  (I found these two helpful tutorials on splicing an electrical cord and making it semi-water resistant.  Hubby said he took this extra step of making the splice semi-water resistant since we buried the cord under the mulch.  He also said he also used some sort of wire netting around the outside of his splice to make it more secure before the silicone and tape.)

Step 2:  Assembling the pots

Stack the brick or upside-down pot at the bottom of the larger pot.  Add a couple of larger rocks around the bottom of the pot and find a secure spot for the pump to rest.

Stack the smaller pot on the brick and decide where the hole for the tubing needs to be.  Drill a small hole just large enough for the tubing. (You might want to move the pot to it’s final location, it will get heavy with all the rocks.)

Connect the tubing to the pump and slide it through the hole you drilled in the smaller pot.

Add a few large rocks to hold the tubing in place. (This may take two people)  Make sure the end of the tube will sit right below the waterline.  (Keep it long, so you can trim it later.)Seal the drilled holes with the silicone caulk.  Follow the package instructions on how long to wait before adding water.  (I think we waited for 24 to 48 hours.)Once the silicone is dry, add water to test the silicone seals and add more silicone if you have any leaks.  (Ours has been going strong for a year.)

Step 3: Making it pretty:

Add more of the bigger rocks as needed.

Add pea gravel/small decorative rocks to the pots as needed, just to a couple of inches below the rim.  This will also help keep the tube in place.

You can also add the pea gravel/small river rock to the larger pot, but do not cover the pump.  You can almost see how we used a larger rock to keep the space around the pump clear in this picture:

 

bubble fountain in a pot

Now, if after reading all that, it just sounds too hard- Amazon has some nice ready-to-go ones for a few more $$.

Fill with water and turn on the pump.  Trim the tube a tiny bit at a time to get the proper bubbling- be careful not to trim too much, because you have siliconed the tube in at the bottom. Enjoy your Bubble Fountain!

Leave me a comment if you have any additional questions about this project.

 

how to make a bubbler fountain

 

 

Looking for more budget-friendly DIY outdoor projects?  Be sure to check these out:

Make a Wood and Rope Tree Swing

 

No Sew Outdoor Patio Curtains (from drop cloths)

 

DIY Outdoor Firepit

 

17 Outdoor Lighting Ideas

 

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71 Comments

  1. Ruth Doyle says:

    How often do the pump and pots need to be cleaned go remove algae and make sure the pump doesn’t get clogged? I live in Northern New Mexico, so any fountain would need to be winterized. It seems that the fountain would need to be completely taken apart to clean and winterize. Is this correct or am I missing something? Thanks for your help — this is a really nice fountain that I hope to build this summer.

    1. If your pump comes with a screen/filter, be sure to use it to keep out debris. (Hubby just made me another one for our new house and didn’t use it, mistake he had to take it apart and put it back on as we have a lot of trees) Other than that, we would use chlorine tablets during the worst of the summer to keep it clean.