How to Build an Outdoor Water Feature


Build an attractive outdoor water feature with large-diameter bamboo stalks and a wooden planter. Make a three-sided frame with the bamboo so that water will fall from the top as if it's a curtain. This water feature is simple to construct and will fit in well with your peaceful outdoor decor.

Step 1

Select a rectangular wooden planter that's slightly larger than the desired width of your water feature. The planter should be at least 10 inches deep and made from bamboo, cedar, redwood or other material approved for outdoor use.

Step 2

Select three stalks of timber bamboo with similar diameters. Timber bamboo can measure from 3 to 7 inches across. For this project, the larger size openings, the better. The bamboo will be the frame for your water feature, with two vertical stalks and a horizontal stalk across the top.

Step 3

Cut two of the bamboo stalks equal to the desired height of your water feature. Measure the width of your planter, edge to edge. Add 8 inches and cut the third bamboo stalk to this dimension.

Step 4

Attach the two vertical bamboo stalks to the inside of the wooden planter with two screws through both outside edges of the bamboo, straight into the top inside edge of the planter. You should have 3 inches of bamboo stalk inside the planter.

Step 5

Cut a section of PVC pipe to fit one of the two vertical stalks, plus 4 inches. Attach one of the 90-degree connectors to one end of the PVC pipe with PVC cement. Let the adhesive dry.

Step 6

Slide the end of the PVC pipe without the vertical connector inside one of the vertical stalks. Attach the remaining 90-degree connector to the end of the pipe inside the planter. Let the adhesive dry.

Step 7

Cut a section of PVC pipe to span the width of your water feature, less two inches. Attach it to the 90-degree connector at the top of your water feature. Attach the end cap to the pipe. You may need a prop to hold the pipe in place. Cut a 6-inch section of PVC pipe and attach it to the connector pipe inside the planter. Let the adhesive dry.

Step 8

Measure the diameter of the vertical stalk housing the PVC pipe and add 4 inches. Cut a 1.75-inch notch into one end of the remaining bamboo stalk that's equal to this measurement. Slide the bamboo over the PVC pipe at the top of your water feature, notch first.

Step 9

Connect the horizontal stalk to the vertical stalks by wrapping twine in a figure-eight formation. Knot the twine. Drill holes through the bottom of the horizontal bamboo stalk, into the bottom of the PVC pipe.

Step 10

Attach a section of pond liner to the inside of the planter with waterproof adhesive. Run the liner beneath and behind the pipe. Place the fountain pump inside the planter. Run plastic tubing from the pump to the PVC pipe. Secure the connection with duct tape. Fill the planter with water.

Things You'll Need

  • 3 Stalks of timber bamboo
  • Saw
  • Measuring tape
  • Screwdriver and decking screws
  • Drill and small drill bit
  • 1.5-inch diameter PVC pipe
  • 2- 90 degree PVC pipe connectors
  • PVC cement
  • PVC end cap
  • Rectangular wooden planter
  • Plastic pond liner
  • Fountain pump
  • Plastic tubing
  • Waterproof adhesive
  • Duct tape


  • About Bamboo

Who Can Help

  • About Fountain Pumps
Keywords: outdoor water feature, bamboo water feature, outdoor decor

About this Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.