Backyard Waterfalls and Water Feature Designs

Designing the perfect backyard space requires a lot of planning and vision.  There are any number of backyard landscaping ideas that can help you create a wonderful retreat for you and your family to enjoy.  One such way is to include the use of water in your designs.  Backyard waterfalls and similar types of water features can add both an audi0 and visual element to your space.

Depending upon where you live, the way in which you use any number of water features will vary.  For example, in climates where freezing temperatures are the norm, it is unlikely that you will want to build a pond that has plants or fish in it.  The reason is obvious, the frozen water will kill the plants and animals each winter.  Better to create a waterfall feature that can be drained or can run without freezing.  This is why it is more common to find koi ponds out West or in much larger installations than the typical backyard size pond.

backyard waterfalls

This is a slate covered waterfall in a backyard space that gives a lot of sound off when running.

Building a Waterfall

There are a few steps to take when building your own backyard waterfall feature.  You can get a sense of what is involved by looking at some of the photos below.  However, there are some common characteristics.

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First of all, you’ll need to have a basin of some sort that will act to collect or catch the water. This could be a dug out and lined ‘pond’, barrel, stone basin, rustic trough, you name it.  Basically, you’re going to be recycling the water from this item back up to the top of your waterfall.

Some of the more striking waterfall designs do a great job of hiding the plumbing and pump mechanisms that are required to maintain a water feature like these.

Once you’ve got your collection area determined, now you can turn your attention to how the water will actually fall into it.  Again, here you have many options.  Some of the more simple designs incorporate larger boulders or stones that are stacked in such a way that gives them a natural looking appearance.  When the pump is turned on, the water cascades down them into your basin or river area just like in nature.  This is the hope anyway!

If you’re a bit more experienced or have the ability to cut tile and are skilled at working with masonry products, you can build a waterfall like the one in the photo above.  This one utilizes copper plumbing to bring the water up from the basin and is a cement retaining wall block that is covered in these great slate tiles.  The amount of water flowing from this style will create a significant water flowing sound.  You should note that this will sound a bit differently than the rock or boulder and cascading river effect as seen in some of the pictures below.

Garden and Pond Waterfalls

Backyard Waterfall Pictures

backyard waterall hot tub

This is a combination of a rock waterfall into a hot tub.

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This simple design allows for the waterfall to have nice, fluid drop to it. A very natural looking design.

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backyard waterfalls_4

This is another example of a natural looking, stacked boulder waterfall.

backyard waterfall with stream

This is a picture of a smaller waterfall feature with a longer river rock stream bed.

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backyard waterfalls_6

Just a picture showing the flagstone style waterfall feature with a cement block basin surround.

backyard waterfalls_7

One more example of a longer 'river' coming from the waterfall feature flowing into a pond that you cannot see.

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There are no particular stones or boulders that are better for the job. What makes the design look great is helping it to blend into your landscape design. Landscape waterfalls that look natural and blend into the rest of your outdoor features will unite your backyard space. You can incorporate elements of your patio as well, much like how the higher end resorts bring some of the nature elements into their rooms and spa treatment areas. This always adds a bit of elegance to the experience. You can do the same thing at home with your backyard waterfall design.





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