How to Make an Urn Fountain

Bubbling fountains bring life to any outdoor space. Install one this weekend and enjoy it for years to come.

Outdoor Project
Project Overview
  • Working Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Skill Level: Intermediate

To bring your garden to life, consider adding a water feature. Moving water catches sunlight and generates a soothing sound to make your outdoor space more relaxing. Most hardware stores won't carry everything needed for this type of fountain, but you can purchase materials from a water garden shop or online. Fountains make a great impression along a walkway, by a front entrance, or near a patio. However, they require electricity, so select a spot near an outdoor outlet. Learn how to make a water fountain from an urn using our instructions below.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Shovel
  • Rake
  • Level
  • Drill
  • 1-1/2-inch drill bit
  • Heavy-duty scissors or shears


  • 45-inch square reservoir
  • Sand
  • Cinder blocks
  • Grate with trap door
  • Urn
  • Plastic tank fitting
  • Copper standpipe
  • Hose bard and fitting
  • Hose
  • 35-watt, 350-gallon-per-house submersible pump
  • Plastic mesh
  • Landscape rocks


  1. Dig Reservoir

    Dig a basin long enough and wide enough to hold your reservoir, and 16 inches deep. Spread sand in the bottom. Smooth sand with the back of a rake, then place the reservoir in the hole. It should sit level, and the top should rest just at or slightly above ground level. Fill reservoir two-thirds full of water. Add sand around the outside of the reservoir, and water it in to make a snug fit.

  2. Water Fountain

    Secure Reservoir and Grate

    Arrange the cinder blocks in the reservoir to support the urn. Then, place the grate on top so it rests on the blocks and the interior ledge of the reservoir, and so that the trap door is easily accessible.

  3. Water Fountain

    Attach Hose

    Drill a 1 1⁄2-inch hole in the bottom of the urn and use a plastic tank fitting to secure copper standpipe so it runs from the hole to the lip of the urn. Attach a hose barb to the fitting, then clamp a rubber hose to the barb.

  4. Water Fountain Basin

    Place Pump

    Cut and place plastic mesh to fit over grate, cutting a hole to match the hole in center of grate. Thread hose through the hole in the grate and mesh and stand the urn up on the grate. Reach into the reservoir for the end of the hose, pull it through the trap door, and attach the hose to the barb on the pump. Place the pump in the reservoir.

  5. Water Fountain

    Fill and Complete Fountain

    Fill the urn with water, cover the grate with rocks, and plug in the pump.

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