There is no doubt now that summer has passed and the cold, dark winter is approaching.
Still, that is no reason not to plunge ahead and invest in a water feature! Many water features can be used year-round, but if you want to make sure yours will operate properly and look good straightaway as we head into the darkness of winter, here are a few tips.
Choose an indoor water feature.
Indoor features are naturally protected from the elements and will work perfectly well whatever the season. If you are concerned about the amount of space it would take up in your home, there are plenty of smaller features or even tabletop water features to choose from and these take up very little space.
If you definitely want to put yours outdoors, however, it is best to choose a mains-powered feature rather than solar-powered. While solar water features are great for the environment and you can put them anywhere in your garden with access to sunlight, their performance will gradually decrease as the year draws to a close due to the fewer hours of sunlight, and certainly by November and December you will not get much pleasure from it until Spring arrives. Bear in mind, however, that you will need a weatherproof outdoor plug and socket (rather than an ordinary plug) for any mains-powered outdoor water features, otherwise it may not be safe to operate. If you are unsure, it is always best to check with a qualified electrician.
One type of feature that is also useful during the winter months as well as being attractive is a bird bath. There is a huge range of bird baths available, including some with integrated water features. While these are beneficial to wildlife year-round, they offer an easily accessible source of fresh water at a time of general hardship for birds and other wildlife as they wait out the harsh winter. Bird bath water features can double your pleasure by bringing local species back into your garden as well as entertaining you with the sounds and sight of the water flowing.
You may like to consider water features with lights in particular. These will offer you extended periods of enjoyment, whether indoors or outdoors, simply by enabling you to observe them even when the day has become dark (which during the winter can be most of the day!) Some features have multi-coloured lights, while others have just white LEDs – either will brighten up your home or garden and can also add to the general atmosphere of winter festivities.
A final thing to note:
if you do decide on an outdoor water feature and intend to have it up and running during the winter, please take care not to allow the water to freeze as this can cause damage to the feature and the pump. Most sellers of such features also supply products to protect it and prevent the water from freezing and these are a good investment as they will prolong the life of your feature and give you some peace of mind!