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10 Reasons to Introduce Fountains and Other Water Features into Your Garden

10 Reasons to Introduce Fountains and Other Water Features into Your Garden

Let’s start by saying that water can blend into the foliage you have growing in your backyard. Transform it into a pond, artificial river or fountain and it can stand out and become a focal feature all on its own. Water features are ideal for large gardens and for patios in smaller spaces. With the right accompaniments, and the correct position, they can also change the ambiance in a significant manner. Let’s have a look at these 10 reasons to why water features are ideal for your garden.

#10. Water features are easy to maintain

Cleaning a fountain or a pond is a piece of cake, but they will need to be cleaned out regularly to minimize the risk of algae building up. Not only that, but cleaning is necessary to prevent blockages, as well. If you are using gravel, stones or rocks, these will also need to be taken out regularly and given a clean or a polish. If you have any fish or pond plants make sure to get them out and place them in a water tank before drying the ponds or the fountains. And don’t forget the best part: this type of activity is very enjoyable, refreshing and does not imply high costs.

#9. You can match the ponds with your garden style

There are so many different designs these days, that it is quite easy to find a style to complement your garden. According to many decorating sources, people prefer three styles: modern, classic and old English. Modern garden spaces that are more minimalist look good with Asian inspired water features, made from natural substances. Plus, you can accessorize the space with grasses and bamboo. For old English gardens look for round or antique water features. Statues that double up as water fountains are also effective in classical garden spaces.
In case you only have a patio or balcony, look for a design that can be used in a corner or on a table. There are small fountains and ponds available, made up of concentric vases, which are very efficient on space.

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#8. You can make use of natural sunlight

Water features are even more beautiful when they have sunlight shining through their water streams. It gives off the impression that you are bonding with nature, while being caressed by light. For some cultures, this is thought to be the link with the spiritual world, while for others water is one of the sacred four elements and having it close means blessing of the gods.
Remember that the Greeks used to worship the god Poseidon who ruled the seas and the oceans, while Romans worshiped Neptune, the Roman god of water. The Ancient people had respect for water and light and more than 3000 years later, people still respect the sacred elements.

#7. You can add more garden designs and textures

Home owners love to décor their homes and this applies to gardens and yards, as well. People love to personalize and customize their gardens as a sign of luxury and prosperity. If you wish to décor your garden, you can use natural looking river rocks in different colors and sizes to add an element of interest. Some are rough while others are smoother and more polished, based on individual preferences. Just make sure the size of the rocks is relative to the size of the fountain and the green plants, water and décor objects ratio is equally spread. The last thing you want is to make your garden look unnatural and over stuffed with “decorations”.

#6. It allows you to create a natural habitat for fish

If you want to bring some more life into the ponds and fountains in the back yard, you can go for fish. While koi fish will need a fairly large amount of space for them to swim around in, gold fish work just as well and are a lot more affordable for smaller ponds. Of course, take into consideration that these small marine animals need clean waters all the time, algae and pond plants and of course, food. They usually feed on specific fish food you can find in any pet store. Another thing to consider is large animals: if you have cats or dogs, they might kill the fish out of play or curiosity. So if you are a pet lover, think twice before buying fish, as they won’t have long lives to live among cats and dogs, unfortunately.

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#5. Pond plants are really affordable

Larger water features and fountains can be enhanced with pond plants that serve as natural decorations. Water lettuce is a popular floating plant, as are water lilies, plus the costs are very low. And the best part is that you can do to the seashore and pick up small water plants such as smaller types of sea corals and even sea weed. Among the most popular sea weeds are the brown and green sea weed, also known as algae. But for a drop of color, you can also go for red or yellow sea weed, easily turning your fountain or pond into a natural underwater rainbow.
Remember to add salt, sugar and vitamins in the water, from time to time. Plants are living organisms, as well. And they need a lot of sunlight, so make sure they get plenty of it.

#4. Water attracts birds and wildlife to the yard

Birds, frogs and insects are more likely to frequent your garden when there is always a source of water available. To encourage more wildlife make sure you have plenty of indigenous trees and plant life in the area. Of course, you can’t just buy a fountain or water feature, set it down, switch it on and hope for the best. It needs to be well positioned and accessorized to monopolize on its potential.
Remember: whatever the choice, small water animals might harm the majority of the sea weed and the maintenance process is a bit tiring. But if you love taking care of your ponds, then this is a great idea to implement.

#3. Water cools the garden down

On a hot summer day, having running water can cool the garden down and make it a pleasant place to enjoy. It also enables you to have aquatic and semi-aquatic plants growing in the garden. And probably the most beautiful feature of having running or still water in the garden is what happens after rain. You get to enjoy one of the most beautiful rainbows in your personal garden, in your home.

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But remember: in order to have this cooling and blissful effect, the water used in fountains and ponds needs to be crystal clear and clean, so the maintenance process applies here, as well.

#2. Water makes the yard look bigger

The reflective properties of water mean it can make some spaces look bigger. For maximum reflection you should use dark material for the feature or fountain. If you really want to make the most of your new creation, you can use underwater lighting for night time in different colors and shapes. You can also use eco lights that charge from the sun during the day and light the garden during the night. It gives off a splendid calming effect that can be used in nature therapies and can relieve stress and anxiety.

#1. Water introduces serenity into your garden

A fountain creates a tranquil sound, which is ideal if you live in a noisy neighborhood or in the city. Think of it as your place to recreate yourself and to become one with nature. There are many water therapies, mostly taking place in the mountain side or seaside, near bigger amounts of water such as seas, oceans and rivers. But if you want to have a piece of heaven near your body and your mind, surely a pond or fountain in your own garden can make your dream come true. For an extra therapy effect, you can even plant perfumed flowers that bloom at night.

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After reading these ten reasons, are you ready to introduce water features and fountains into your garden?

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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