Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Flushing the Fountain

I have a small, self-contained fountain from Home Depot. It used to sit in my sunroom, but I moved it out in preparation for renovations last summer. I set it out on a corner of the deck and decided I liked it there better. However, I discovered that keeping a fountain outside involves more maintenance than inside. Even though the fountain is in the shade, algal growth eventually clogs the water line and the result is a sad dribbling fountain:

Two or three times during the summer, I clean out the line using three common household items (1) hot water, (2) vinegar, and (3) a turkey baster. (I might add that I originally tried to unplug the line with wire, but that was ineffective.)

I remove the hose (and attached mouthpiece) from the fountain and bring it inside. Using the turkey baster, I force a mixture of hot water and vinegar through the line. It takes a few flushings, but, eventually, clots of slimy algae are pushed out the house. I finish with multiple hot water rinses, until I’m sure the line is clear. Then, I reassemble the fountain and plug it back in.

When I’m ready to put the fountain away for the season, I’ll clean the pump itself, but just clearing the line gets me through the summer.



Anonymous Rosie said...

I will tuck that info away for futures reference. We are determined next year to have some small water features....while we save up for a big one :) Good info, Thanks!


6:36 AM  
Blogger LostRoses said...

Great shot of you force-feeding the lion! I found out by accident this summer that my wall fountain (from Lowe's) stays a lot cleaner if I don't put floating water plants in it. But it looks much prettier with them! Oh, and I always use distilled water for that fountain only, just to see if it made much of a difference and it really does.

I love your fountain!

6:47 PM  
Blogger EAL said...

Small fountains can be a HUGE pain.

Mu husabnd has a hell of a time setting ours up and now there is some kind of wierd now-and-then leak somewhere.

Cute fountain though!

7:19 PM  
Anonymous Dianne said...

The algae was bad this year. I see you have water hyacinths. I use to have them, but stick to waterlilies now. Walmart has them in little mesh bags, easy to just drop into the pond or even fountain!

1:10 PM  
Blogger Sue Swift said...

Hi – this is an invitation to join the Garden Bloggers Retro carnival. I don’t know if you’ve ever come across the concept of a Blog carnival – if not I’ve explained it in detail on my site today (Oct 1). But basically the idea is to revive an old post which you think is worth rereading, or which you think new readers might enjoy. Send me the link to the post, and in November I’ll publish a series of posts describing and linking to all the posts people have nominated.
I hope you’ll join in and we have a fun carnival!

4:49 AM  
Anonymous 10bestTucson said...

well you are on the right side buddy that keeping a fountain outside increase you responsibilities because you have to take care of him more,but dont you think that it looks great outside rather then inside?

11:54 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

Life must've gotten busy on you. Miss your posts. Hope you are having fun somewhere out of the garden.

11:05 AM  
Anonymous Discount Area Rugs said...

This is a great way to start a year. Cleaning up and making something more functional always does something great to the spirit.

10:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, where are you? It's spring. Did you move? What are your spring gardening plans?

11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great art....

10:25 PM  
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8:14 AM  
Anonymous Tub said...

That fountain looks great outside. Looks completely natural....like it's been there for years!

4:36 PM  

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