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4 Ways to Set Up a Water Basin

If you're planning to create a Japanese garden or bring Asian accents to your design, a Japanese fountain will add a fresh touch to your decor. There are a few traditionally Japanese fountains you can choose from, but one of the most popular fountains, and one that's simple to make, is a cleansing fountain inspired by the earlier chozubachi found at Buddhist temples, where visitors purify themselves before entering. This kind of fountain is also used often in traditional tea ceremonies to prepare guests for the experience. Included are several styles of construction set-up.

Basin overflowingTraditional Japanese Garden Overflowing Basin

This is the traditional Japanese garden set-up for a water basin. The basin is slightly set so the water runs over only the front of the basin into a hidden reservoir.

Equipment needed: basin without hole, bamboo fountain with pump, grate, gravel and a reservoir liner.

Basin holeOverflowing Basin Set-up

To set-up an overflowing basin, the basin would not need a drilled hole since the water would overflow from the top of the basin into the reservoir as shown in the diagram.

Equipment need: basin without hole, bamboo fountain with pump, bricks, grate, gravel and a 40 mil. liner. We suggest a 40 mil. liner for all reservoirs because it is less likely to get punctured by stones and tree roots.

Self contained basinSelf-contained Basin

A larger basin can also be set-up with no external water reservoir. The pump would re-circulate the water directly from the basin to the bamboo fountain’s spout. This set-up would require a drilled basin. Don't forget to top the basin off with water or it will evaporate because most basins are shallow in depth.

Equipment needed: basin with hole, bamboo spout with pump.

Self contained basin with reservoirSelf Contained Basin with Reservoir A basin could also be set-up where the water does not overflow outside the basin, but does have a reservoir. The advantage of this set-up is that the pump is hidden in the reservoir and holds a larger amount of water, so it would not need to be topped off with water as often.

Equipment needed: basin with hole, bamboo fountain spout with pump, bricks, grate, gravel and a 40 mil. 5'x5'