Birdbaths to Enhance Your Landscape | Midwest Living

Birdbaths to Enhance Your Landscape

Add life to your yard by installing a birdbath. You'll be rewarded with fluttering, splashing and birdsong—and a piece of garden art you can use in creative ways.

Haute Halloween

Keep the birds happy year-round with a pumpkin treat. Though these are fake birds, the real things appreciate fresh treats.

Hanging around

Meet birds half way by suspending a birdbath in a tree. Keep it low enough that filling and cleaning is still easy to do. (Bird baths should be filled with clean, fresh water every couple of days. When refilling, use a brush to remove any algae that may have grown.) This one has a wreath of branches to supply handy perches.

Free form

Make a birdbath of hypertufa and it can fill any spot in a yard. Positioned on the ground, it will have the added benefit of providing water for many small mammals, such as squirrels, chipmunks and rabbits. If cats frequent your yard, the bath should be off the ground and away from shrubs and brush. Different bird species like different bath heights, so provide a variety or experiment to see what works best for you.

Draw all eyes

This purple gazing ball echoes the colors in plants surrounding the birdbath. Choose a color that suits your setting. 

Look lively

Perch a couple of statues in the water for a vibrant look.

Mosaic masterpiece

Personalize a preform birdbath and ball with a tile mosaic. Talk about enhancing the look of your garden.

Look of blooms

This mosaic flower mirrors the blooms in a garden.

Fresh fountain

Installing a simple fountain mechanism attracts birds and adds movement and sound to your garden for you.

Another fountain idea: Create a DIY invitation to birds by pounding a nail hole in the bottom of a container such as a bucket or jug; fill with water and hang above the bath. The steady drips will attract birds.

DIY delight

Birds don't care what you use as a birdbath—terra-cotta plant saucers, a garbage can lid with a few stones placed inside. Here a plastic plant saucer rests in branches. Glass rocks (usually used as vase filler) provides safe footing.

Give 'em a hand up

This original piece still functions as a birdbath. Let your imagination be the only limit to what you use.

Second act

Even if a birdbath can't hold water anymore, you don't have to pitch it. With a few added touches, it lives on in its role of garden helper. Or may we suggest filling it with birdseed? Click to the next slide for a clever idea on making a container garden in a broken birdbath.

Birdbath planter

Damaged and broken items may no longer be useful for their original purpose, but they make great art. A damaged birdbath becomes a succulent garden. Add a base of soilless potting mix, plant with succulents and finish with a mulch of Spanish moss. Decorate with your choice of accessories, such as this candy dish planter, compass and spoon.

Bountiful birdbath

A colorful arrangement blooms from this weathered concrete birdbath.

'Pink Champagne' rubygrass bursts like a fountain; 'Blushing Emily' chrysanthemums and Tiny Toes coleus offer pops of red. Green kale, yellow-green Golden Globes loosestrife and bronze 'Dolce Crème Brulee' coral bells round out the mix.

Birdbath mosaic

Tile and pebble embellishments sparkle in shallow birdbaths. Match the grout to the color of the bowl to show off your mosaic work.

Haute Halloween

Keep the birds happy year-round with a pumpkin treat. Though these are fake birds, the real things appreciate fresh treats.

Chill time

Just because the garden has gone dormant, doesn't mean a birdbath can't still add to the look.

Frozen color

Based on a French floral design technique called pavé, this one-dimensional winter arrangement is composed of natural ingredients squeezed close together, then frozen in place with water. In this example, Minneapolis garden designer Scott Endres used kumquats, polished stones, cranberries and pepper berries.

More garden project ideas

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