Other Waterfeatures (from birdbaths to lakes)

Grecian Milestones
Humans have been inventing ways to control water since the dawn of recorded history and almost certainly long before that. Among the most significant ancient hydraulic achievements, many have emerged from Greece where technologies such as the water wheel, positive displacement pumps, and the world's oldest operating fountain were all devised.
Building the Ultimate Wave
Australia has long been known as a surfing mecca, boasting some of the world's most awesome breaks. Now, that reputation is moving inland, where the world's largest (and arguably its most innovative) wave pool is redefining how to catch and ride the waves.
A Beautiful Wreck
Creating custom interactive water features often involves not only understanding the needs of community stakeholders, but also the character and history of the place itself.  That was certainly the case at Windjammer Park, a 28.5-acre waterfront recreational area located in the picturesque town of Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island in Washington State. Nestled on the shores of the majestic Puget Sound, locals take
Demise of the Water Hazard
There's no question that watershapes have become scarce on new golf courses. Where owners and designers once tried to one-up each other in terms of elaborate course design, including the expansive use of lakes, ponds, streams and waterfalls, today minimalism is the guiding principle, meaning water is rarely part of the program. There are exceptions, of course, but they are extremely few and far between. As one example, we completed a project back in 2016 that included a 23-million gallon irrigation lake that is also an amenity/hazard. Located at the Scottsdale National Golf Club (SNGC) in Scottsdale, Ariz., it's the only significant
Riding the Lazy River
Animating water in the form of a lazy river inspires many prospective pool owners, explains Mike Farley. But the cost and level of difficulty quickly narrow the opportunities, both for clients concerned with affordability and builders who need an important set of design and technical skills.    
Vertical Pursuits
Given the way bodies of water interact with gravity, a great deal of the personality of any swimming pool is set by the flat surface of the water and its reflective qualities. In our work, we've found a variety of ways to capitalize on that flatness by creating focal points that are distinctly vertical in nature. In fact, we've found that working on the "y axis" and focusing on upright structures as diverse as arches, walls, columns and waterfalls can yield a variety of stunning visual effects:  Exterior spaces and vistas can be connected or distinguished, architectural shapes can be contrasted or echoed, shadows or reflections can be cast, and privacy or openness can be enhanced. The fact that these effects cut both ways makes them appealing to a custom builder who strives to give clients something unique and lets the characteristics of the individual setting drive the design process.  It makes the work more challenging, yes, but it also makes it more fun and rewarding. In many cases, the vertical elements we use can be subtle and retiring - a slightly raised bond beam, for example, or a small waterfall.  More often than not, however, we gravitate toward the bold and declarative by integrating water into architectural forms and creating dramatic and
The Flooded Mirror
After starting in the pool industry more than 40 years ago as a service technician, I gradually became involved in repairs, then remodeling work and, finally, with design and new construction. I've now built commercial and high-end residential projects, done numerous vanishing-edge installations and have pursued designs and details I wouldn't have dreamed of doing back in 1979. But there was one look that I'd never had an opportunity to work on with any of my clients: a perimeter overflow. That all changed last year in a backyard in Alamo, Calif., and the interesting thing is that
Team Building
This was a fun one - a project that was fully within our comfort zone but pushed us into new territory and gave us an opportunity to shine in a unique design context. We had worked with the property-management firm before, and they called us in to have a look at a large space behind a multi-story office building in Overland Park, Kans., where we were also to meet with the building's owner and some of the project's stakeholders. We had done well in our
Forging a Path
As a landscape architect, I'm passionate about creating gardens of every variety. But I like my work to benefit as many people as possible, so I get particularly engaged when these spaces are accessible to the general public. This explains why I love working on botanical gardens and exploring the ways they allow me to focus on plants and education in fundamental ways. Through the past 30 years, I've had the privilege of working on slices of four different botanical gardens, so I also know the
A Healing Art
As our business has evolved through the years, more and more often we've found ourselves involved in designing, engineering and installing waterfeatures associated with hospitals, medical centers and other healthcare institutions. These projects usually fall under the heading of "wellness gardens" or "healing gardens" - that is, spaces set aside for patients, families and staff to decompress, meditate or simply take a break. While these watershapes are generally simple in concept, there's typically more to the way they're designed and built than meets the eye - a fact that adds an extra layer of