DIY Garden Fountain

I am soooooo excited to share this project with you all.  My dad and I made this diy garden fountain together for my birthday present a few years ago.  Since we moved the following January, it has been sitting in a box.  I found the box and re-assembled the fountain and thought that this would be exactly the type of project that YOU all would love as much as I do!  So here it goes…this tutorial is  a reassembly but you can get the idea!

DIY Infinite Garden Fountain 1

Here is a step by step tutorial on how to create your own DIY Garden Infinite Fountain.

Items Needed:

  • Large Decorative or colored pot
  • smaller cheap plastic pot that will fit inside of the first pot when upside down
  • 2 cheap plastic pot drip pans (as I like to call them)
  • small water pump
  • drill
  • small screws/nuts (1/4” by 1/2” long)
  • 1/2” plastic tubing
  • 1/2” plastic tubing tee


We started off with a large red plastic pot.  (You want the pot to be made of something you can easily drill through.)  We drilled a hole about 2 inches below the top of the pot, just below the inside lip.  We simply drilled several holes next to one another, just large enough to fit the plug through from the water pump.

Red Pot Collage
Next to assemble the inside of the fountain.

The cheap plastic pot used for the inside, will be flipped over inside the red pot.  The pump will be inside of it.  So to make sure water can get to the pump, we need to drill a bunch of holes in the cheap plastic pot (green pot) so that the water can easily get to the inside.

Inside Pot drilled with water holes
Next, turn the green pot upside down and stack your two plastic plant pot drip pans on top of one another, right side up.   (disregard the tubes coming out at this point—I told you this was a reassembly!)

Pot Drip Catchers
Next drill 2 holes through the plant drip pans AND through the bottom of the green pot with a drill bit the same size as your small screws/nuts.  Mine was 1/4”.  Then use the screws/nuts & washers to secure your drip pans to the bottom of the green pot.

Screw Drip Catchers to inside pot
Inside view of the attachment of the drip pans:

Inside of Pot where Drip Pan is Screwed in
Now you will repeat the drilling process, but this time we will use 1/2” drill bit for our 1/2” plastic tubing.  These will be where our fountains come out.  We just did ours across from one another (think 9 and 3 o’clock positions).

Holes drilled for plastic tubing
Next, assemble your Tee.  Cut 2 small pieces of tubing to come out of each of the holes you just drilled and attach them to your tee.  Carefully push the tubing through the drilled holes so that they come out about 1 inch.

Tubing Tee Set Up
Here they are on the top:

Holes drilled for plastic tubing
Now we are ready for the pump!  You can find these pumps in your local home improvement store where they sell the parts needed for outdoor ponds.  We got all our parts for this project at Lowe’s.

Small Pond Pump
We need to also cut a length of tubing to run from the bottom of the tee to the top of the pump (that little spout you see above).  It’s important that when you cut this length of tubing, you make it long enough so that the pump sits on the bottom of the RED pot.  Don’t’ just cut the length the height of the green pot, because it is sitting inside of your red pot and the two pots might not sit perfectly flat on the bottom!  You want the water intake and the suction cup feet to be resting on the bottom of the red pot easily.

Attaching the Pump and tubing

At this point we realized we needed a hole in the green pot for the cord of the pump to come through because our green pot fit nicely in the red pot leaving no extra room at at the bottom for the cord.  So we just poked it through one of the holes in the cheap green pot!  Pretty Easy.

Pump Cord hole in inside pot
Now place your green pot into your red pot.

Set Up almost complete
Pull the pump cord through the pre-drilled hole.

Cord Collage
Now you can fill your pot with water!  I’d fill it about 2/3 the way full.  Next plug in your pump.  You might have to tweak your pump to get the flow going.  This is why we do this now, before we put on all the rocks!  Also, depending on the size of pump you have, you might need to close off the tubing to create some backpressure (yes I am a chemical engineer remember!)  Otherwise you will have a running hose, versus a shooting fountain.  We did this by just screwing some small screws through the tubing spouts to “close” them up a bit.

Screw in tubing to create backpressure
Once you have your water flowing…you can add some pretty rocks to the top.  I just used rocks from my landscaping so it goes nicely on my back patio.

Add rock Base to top of drip pan
(After I took this picture, I also added another ring around the edge to cover mostly all of the drip pan. Now the water runs over the rocks, and to the edges of the drip pan and back down into the pot creating the “Infinite” effect!

Fountain Working
DIY Infinite Garden Fountain
Oh and by the way…the furry baby and the littlest baby think this is their personal drinking fountains for when we are playing outside!

Murphy in the fountain  photo 3

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26 Responses
  • imklvr
    June 12, 2012

    You mustknow how much I’ve wanted a fountain…indoor or out, or both! Oh, you COULD do this for inside, couldn’t you?! Yeah, I’m gonna bookmark this. We have a patio that we are ‘furnishing’ and this will be just perfect (aka, cheap!)! Thanks, my are the best!

    • Cheryl
      June 12, 2012

      Absolutely can be used inside! We have to keep ours outside due to dogs/little boys but it’s not messy at all if you omit those two factors from the equation! Also, R has just figure out how to plug one side with his fat little finger and make the other side shoot out at his brother! Oh goodness! :)

  • imklvr
    June 12, 2012

    Oh, yeah, kudos to your dad, too!

  • Kathy Lawson
    June 12, 2012

    TOO freaking cool. I have a solar pump and I’m going to do this! Its going to take some time to find the perfect pot and rocks, tho.

  • Sally Loeffelman
    June 13, 2012

    I am so excited and glad that you did a tutorial on this awesome fountain. I have it added to my list of 10 projects for this summer. Can’t wait to get started. Thanks so much!!

    • Cheryl
      June 13, 2012

      Thanks Sally! I’d love to see yours when you finish it! Post a picture to my facebook page if you think about it or email me one! :)

  • K @ Claiming Our Space
    June 14, 2012

    I love this. We have been wanting a fountain for our back patio and this looks like it would fit the bill. I would love it if you would share on Tout It Tuesday!

  • Steff
    June 14, 2012

    WOOT!!! This is going to be the one project I will tackle during my Mums’ annual visit next week. We both love water, and we share similar tastes in decorations- what you created with your old man fits the bill perfectly. Ridiculously beautiful in its simplicity, just what I think we will enjoy creating and looking at. Thanks for sharing this at FlamingoToes, it couldn’t have come at a moment more perfectly suited. It’ll be yet another puzzle piece in the great project of turning concrete into paradise!

  • [email protected] Brisbane
    June 17, 2012

    It is so nice, so creative, let see if I can get it done, do you have any extra advises?

  • Ann
    June 17, 2012

    Such a cute fountain! I have one my hubby made for me with Terracotta pots. I love the sound of the water trickling over the rocks! Thanks for sharing!

    Ann @
    “Better joy in a cottage than sorrow in a palace” Spanish Proverb

  • Dana @ CraftedNiche
    June 21, 2012

    So clever! I might need one of these for my fur-babies!

  • Kelsey
    July 8, 2012

    Cheryl! This is wonderful! Thanks for linking up to the summer link party!


  • Sherry
    June 16, 2013

    I think I have everything for this project on hand, except the tubbing. Going to Lowes this afternoon. Thanks for sharing. I totally understand the engineer thing….my father-in-law is a retired engineer, he once painted a bedroom with a half inch brush because after trying several sizes he felt that one did the best job!!

  • geri
    August 2, 2013

    HI, I know that this is an old post; but I just found your website. I’ve been looking and pinning a few to use later, and I just started!

    Just a quick question for my clarification. What size is your largest pot? I have a small one, about 8 inches on my patio, and thinking something bigger would drown out our community pool pump noise. Thanks

  • Bridget River
    May 29, 2016

    very clear directions. Thank you.

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