When constructing a man-made waterfall, the main considerations include the location and views, materials, maintaining a natural look and feel, the budget and local regulations. Adequate planning helps you devote appropriate attention to these aspects of the project.
Location is critical because it influences the design, budget and views of the waterfall. The waterfall should be visible from your favorite places such as decks, patios or bedrooms depending on your preference. The location should be free of obstacles and provide multiple views of the waterfall. Building the waterfall next to or in an existing garden reduces the amount of resources necessary to achieve a realistic view. Some locations such as a slope minimize the amount of work you need to complete the project.
Materials and other supplies, including the pump system, affect the stability of the waterfall and the maintenance it requires. Look for sturdy stone that does not encourage algae growth. Quality stone is durable, low-maintenance and ensures the water remains clear. Some suppliers offer stone with custom color and size to match the appearance and size of the desired waterfall.
The main idea behind man-made waterfalls is to bring the awe of natural waterfalls to a site. Maintaining a natural look and feel enhances the effect of the project. Some considerations in this regard include keeping biological filters out of sight, designing for the appropriate sound and using materials and supplies that are consistent with the surrounding landscape.
If you are on a small budget, build a simple waterfall. A large, sophisticated waterfall is high-maintenance, consumes more materials, requires an expensive pump and is difficult to construct.
Man-made waterfalls give rise to environmental and health or safety concerns that require special attention during construction. Some local building departments have regulations governing the construction of waterfalls.