Child Safe Water Features
is no doubt that safety in the garden should
be top of any list of priorities. You never
can be too careful and gardeners carry a lot
of responsibilities with tools, chemicals, poisonous
berries, electricity and water as potential
and chemicals we can lock up in a shed or cupboard,
toxic plants may be banned and electricity,
if professionally installed, should be safe.
in the form of ponds, pools, fountains, cascades
and waterfalls make for interesting features
and I would suggest that every garden would
benefit from the sight and sound of moving water.
challenge is in providing a feature that is
safe in a garden where there are children.
ponds where the depth of water is kept to a
minimum is part of the solution but even a few
inches of water can be fatal.
solution is to surround the water feature with
a secure fence until children and grandchildren
are beyond the danger age. If wrought iron railings
are used they can look very attractive and are
“see through”. Wooden picket fencing
is less expensive and provides a “cottage”
appearance. Where there is a gate for access
then it must be kept locked.
moving water via a fountain, cascade or waterfall
is not likely to be a safety risk. Children
can be a nuisance blocking the flow of water
with sticks, stones and leaves resulting in
an empty pond and a burnt out pump. Arriving
at the back door with soaking clothes will be
no more harmful than being caught in a shower
pond can be made safe without losing the sight
and sound of running water.
steel or galvanised bars across the pond a few
inches above the surface of the water to support
galvanised mesh. Cut the sheets to fit around
water features such as fountains or figurines.
Cover the mesh with smooth, round river stones
.These are available from garden centres in
a selection of colours.
water surface is now hidden and safe yet the
pump can continue to move water around the features.
Check on a regular basis the water level in
will mean doing without pond plants such as
water lilies and fish but it isn’t forever.
There will be years between the children and
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