DIY Water Wall

Does it feel like summer in your part of the world? It’s heating up here, and my kids have been enjoying this easy and inexpensive new backyard water feature. All you need is a nearby water source and a wall to attach it to.

I’ve been inspired by Let the Children Play once again! Last summer Jenny gave us the idea for our mud pie kitchen (and here’s her mud kitchen), and other outdoor hands-on activities that get my kids thinking and building in the fresh air. Her water wall post (full of water wall inspiration from around the web) has been sitting in my mind since she posted it in October (she’s in Australia where it’s bloody hot in October), and it’s altogether responsible for the hours of fun my kids and neighborhood friends had with our newest backyard water feature. Thank you, Jenny!

My older daughter helped me build this one afternoon last week while my toddler was napping. She loved the responsibility of holding the bottles steady while I drilled and took a lot of pride in our finished water wall. It’s not gorgeous, but it’s a lot of fun and an upcycler’s DIY dream.

water wall build

To replicate this upcycled playscape in your own garden or patio, I’ll break this down into some simple steps.

collection of water wall materials

Four Basic Materials

  1. Plastic bottles
  2. Screws (this nifty kit came from IKEA)
  3. Drill
  4. exacto knife

With the exacto knife, cut a hole in the side of the bottle. The hole will be large enough for you to fit your hand into it so that you can easily position and drill in the screws.

score bottle and add screws

Using the exacto knife, score an “X” on the side of a bottle and push a screw through the “X” from the inside. Repeat one more time so that you have two screws poking through the bottle.

Screw the bottles to a fence or wall. Tilt them slightly downward to help the water pour through. You might have to shift the bottles around or cut the holes a bit more to make the water wall work properly. Test as you go.

water wall testing

Test it out to make sure it works. Add a bucket at the bottom to catch the water, which can then be added to plants or returned to the top of the water wall.

Invite some friends over to play.

water wall play

Set up a water-filling station and add some pitchers, watering cans, and cups.

And be prepared for eye-opening, open-ended fun.

 

Comments

  1. says

    Brilliant! I saw the same post and got inspired too and made one too. Only…no good weather in NL yet…so it hasn’t been used much.Thnx for sharing yours. Esther

  2. says

    What a beautiful water wall. I have been wanting to make one. I love how simple this one is. Makes it feel a lot more doable with how busy this time of year is for my family. Thanks for the inspiration :)

  3. says

    Oh, this looks like fun! I’m hoping to crank out an outdoor chalkboard this month, but as soon as that is done … this is moving to the top of my list — an up cyclers dream indeed :)

  4. says

    LOVE this!! I saw your post this morning and had my husband make a water wall for my kids this afternoon, LOL!! It came out great. It was so simple and looks so cool!! And of course the kids LOVED it! Thanks so much for sharing!

  5. Jeannie says

    I saw this on Pinterest and love the idea, but we have a chain link fence. I’m thinking we might try using zip ties to fasten the bottles to the fence. Anyone done this on chain link link and have other suggestions?

    • Felicia says

      I’m making one with peg board and golf tees so the bottles can be moved. My Idea is to zip tie the peg board to the fence. I will let u know if it works.

    • Susan says

      YES!I’m a preschool teacher with a limited budget but really wanted to try this with “my” kids. I I found and drove through back lanes until scavenged some discarded lattice panels. The owner even cut them to size for me! I was going to use zip ties but found foam wrapped wire in the garden section at the Dollar store. It is amazing and can be changed around easily, cut to size and it’s soft (ie no scratches). We used plastic tubing and funnels as well as cut to spec bottles. AND the kids love it! they have to climb up a level on the gazebo carrying containers of water so they get a lot of exercise, too! and learn about water conservation!

    • rachelle says

      Hi Suzette,
      This would be a fun thing to set up in just about any season (aside from freezing cold, of course).
      Have fun,
      Rachelle

  6. Kim says

    What a great idea! I love it! I have a chain link fence so we might be able to do this with string. The great thing is that the older kids can put it together for the little ones. Great for keeping the big kids busy.

    • Susan says

      I was going to use zip ties but found foam wrapped wire in the garden section at the Dollar store. It is amazing. It can be changed around easily, cut to size and it’s soft (ie no scratches). If you have older kids, they can change things around easily with this method.

  7. Andrea says

    Great idea but my husband would flip if I put holes in the fence (which is fairly new!) but I wonder if the peg board idea worked out for the person that suggested it.

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