Many containers can be well suited to conversion to a water garden. Selecting the right container depends greatly on what kind of water garden is going to be made. Deep, wide containers can be appropriate for addition of goldfish, while water gardens can also be as small as a tabletop ceramic pot containing a few plants.
A container water garden is basically an above-ground pond in an artificial container. While anything watertight can be made into a water garden, there are some things to consider that can help the plants placed inside to thrive. Water garden containers should be the proper size for the plants to be included in the garden. Plants are typically put in their own individual, porous containers and then set into the soil at the bottom of the main container. There should be enough room for all the plants and enough space to be able to reach inside and pull a plant out should it die.
Select water garden containers are deeper than the plants themselves call for. Usually, a layer of clay, soil, or stone on the bottom of the container will raise the bottom. Different plants will require different depths, and this will allow for a variety of plants. Cinder blocks or any similar material can be used to raise each plant to the proper height and to create a tiered effect within the water garden.
The exterior color of the container can be chosen to suit any type of decor, but the interior color of water garden containers is important to the function of the garden. A dark color such as black or dark green can actually help create a more stable environment within the garden. Algae is less likely to grow against a dark background. If selecting a terracotta-colored pot, there are sealants available that will not only help prevent water leakage but also change the color inside of the container. If fish are going to be added to the garden, they will be easier to see against water garden containers with a dark background.
A variety of items can be made into a container garden even if that wasn't the original purpose, and thinking outside of the garden center can result in some unique gardens. Many places sell old barrels once used to age alcohol; cut one in two uneven pieces, line the inside, and get two water garden containers for a complementing, multileveled feature. Children's swimming pools can also be easily converted, making it easy to create a water garden suited to a home's unique decor.