Since garden fountains are usually so expensive, it's important to maintain them well so that they'll be both pretty and operable for years to come. While some threats like algae formation and bugs are a particularly big deal in the spring and summer, cold and snow make winter the most dangerous season for your fountain. In addition to covering and draining your garden fountain, check out these three tips for further protecting it during winter.
Sprinkle Salt On The Ground Around The Fountain
Packages of salt from the hardware store aren't just useful for keeping snow off of your sidewalk and driveway. Especially if your fountain is surrounded by concrete or a wooden floor instead of tall grass, they're great for keeping snow from building up next to and eventually falling into your fountain's lowest bowl.
It's important to shovel away any significant snow that's already fallen before you put down a healthy smattering of salt. Salt is much better at dispersing a fledgling layer of snow than keeping an already established pile from getting any higher.
Put Crumpled Paper Under The Tarp So That It Can't Bend As Easily From Snow
No matter how thick your fountain's protective tarp is, it can still bend from snow falling directly from the sky if a snowstorm is intense enough. And once the tarp is bent, even small snowflakes from an ordinary snowfall will stop sliding off it and start accumulating into a snow pile. If you're not attentive enough, the final result could be that your fountain bowls warp and crack because they're completely filled up with snow.
To make your tarp protection more substantial, crumple up old newspapers and stuff them gently into the fountain's bowls. Your tarp is less likely to bend significantly when it's buttressed by the support of something underneath it.
Partially Disassemble And Clean The Fountain's Pump Before It Gets Really Cold
Even if your fountain's body will hold up fine because it's made of a very sturdy material like marble, some of the parts in its pump are still fragile. If your fountain has been operating for a few years and these parts have gotten dirty, they're extremely vulnerable to warping and cracking during an extreme cold spell.
Remove all your pump's external panels and shine a flashlight on all the parts within. If you can see any gunk or dust buildup, remove the affected part and wash it down thoroughly.