How to Build a Bamboo Fountain

Overview

A bamboo fountain can add both visual and audible interest to your indoor or outdoor garden. A staple of Japanese-style water gardens, a bamboo spigot-style fountain fixture, or "kakei," adds an additional natural element to your garden. Because it is typically already hollow, bamboo is an easy material to work with when creating a fountain. Be sure to purchase bamboo pieces that are of a large enough diameter to accept the plastic tubing, and at least one piece of a slightly larger diameter than the rest of the bamboo.

Step 1

Plug any holes in the bottom of your water vessel with corks. Although most people use glazed ceramic pots, wood or stone vessels also work well.

Step 2

Caulk around the corks both inside the pot and on the its underside. Silicon caulking generally works well.

Step 3

Cut a piece of thicker bamboo to serve as the center post of your fountain. Although the height is a matter of personal taste, cutting the center post long enough to stick out above the water the equivalent of one third of the height of the vessel often makes a nicely balanced fountain. For larger outdoor fountains, use 1- to 2-inch diameter bamboo for the central support. For smaller indoor fountains, use this size or smaller, depending on how you want your fountain to look.

Step 4

Lash two pieces of smaller bamboo on either side of the larger piece. These two horizontals will support the vertical central piece and hold it just above the bottom of the pot.

Step 5

Cut a spout from the same size bamboo as you used for the supports. Some people cut the end of the spout at an angle, others don't.

Step 6

Drill a hole the diameter of the spout piece about a third of the distance between the top of the thick vertical and the two supports.

Step 7

Run the plastic tubing up the vertical and through the spout. Some bamboo may have blockages due to the natural growth patterns of the bamboo. If you can't get the plastic tubing through the bamboo, drill out the center of the bamboo if possible. If the blockage is too far away to drill, put an iron rod or a thick wood dowel into the hole and hit it repeatedly with a hammer to break up internal obstructions.

Step 8

Fit the spout into the vertical and pull the tubing through the bottom until it is completely enclosed by the spout, but not visible through its mouth.

Step 9

Cut off any excess tubing with a utility or hobby knife.

Step 10

Attach the water pump to the opposite end of the tubing and fill the pot. Plug in the pump to start the fountain.

Things You'll Need

  • Water vessel
  • Cork
  • Caulking (recommended, but optional)
  • Bamboo
  • Rope
  • Saw
  • Drill
  • Plastic tubing
  • Utility or hobby knife
  • Water pump

References

  • Basket Weaving: Bamboo Fountains
  • Garden Gifts: Japanese Fountain & Basin Set-Up
  • Water Gardens: Bamboo Fountain
Keywords: bamboo fountain, water feater, water garden

About this Author

Christopher Earle is a freelance writer based in Denver, Colo. He has been writing since 1987 and has written for National Public Radio, the Associated Press, the Boeing Company, Ford New Holland, Microsoft, Active Voice, RAHCO International and Umax Data Systems. He studied creative writing at Mankato State University in Minnesota.