For a calming touch of decor, follow these steps to let the sights, sounds, luck and beauty of a potted water feature flow into your home


Now that my fiancĂ©, Scott, and I live closer to the water, I’ve started a routine that includes visiting the ocean at least once daily. So far, I haven’t missed a day. The colors, sounds, smells and simplicity of the ocean remind me that no matter how stressful my day may get, calmer seas are yet to come.

But the ocean is not the only way to bring the tranquility of water to your everyday routine. Years ago on a photo shoot for a home magazine, I remember raving over a homeowner’s potted water feature. She told me that it was not only good luck to have water flowing toward the home, but that it also helped to drown out the noise of the city and, interestingly, was easy to make. If you want to enjoy the sights, sounds and luck a potted water feature can bring to your home, follow these simple steps.

• Gather your materials. You’ll need a large pot (at least 24 inches in diameter) with a drainage hole in the bottom. If it doesn’t have a drainage hole, use a masonry bit and drill one yourself. Or, if you purchase your pot at a landscaping center, they may be able to drill one for you. You’ll also need premixed, quick-dry cement, liquid water sealant and some bricks.

• Place a submersible pump in the bottom of the pot.Then, turn the pot on its side. Pull the electrical cord through the hole. You are going to elevate the pump later so it sits just below the water’s surface, so make sure you leave enough slack.

• Make it watertight. Using cement, close the hole with cord inside. Make sure to close it completely and follow directions on package. When it’s completely dry, use a liquid water sealant on the inside surface of the pot.

• Place it in your yard where desired. To disguise the cord, you can dig a channel in the soil beneath the pot. You can also set it on top of paving stones for support. Just remember to leave a space for the cord.

• Raise the pump. Stack bricks inside, high enough so the pump sits just below the water’s surface. Place the pump on top.

• Fill the pot with water. Add water until it’s at just about 1 inch below the rim. Plug it in and enjoy. Keep adding water periodically so the pump never breaks the surface.

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