I have something to start you thinking about warmer weather. The buzz words are water garden.
Water gardens are a rage now and rightly so. A water garden can provide beauty and entertainment with relatively little maintenance.
A water garden should be situated in a sunny exposure, hopefully on a level area. The depth of the water itself in the lowest level should be 18-24 inches, especially if you are wanting to grow water lilies. After the pool is dug in the desired shape, they may be lined with plastic sheeting. Concrete may also be used to form the pool. Don't forget that large tubs can be transformed into patio water gardens.
A major problem in water gardening is the growth of algae, which gives the water that cloudy green cast. Submerged aquatic plants liberate oxygen into the water as an end process of photosynthesis. These plants are commonly known as oxygenators. The foliage of the oxygenator plants provide cover for young fish and is an excellent location for them to lays their eggs. Fish help maintain clear water by devouring insects, algae, and other debris. Certainly, water garden fish can put a real hurt on the mosquito population.
Don't forget to add bog and shallow water plants, which provide an attractive natural effect to the water garden. Shallow water garden plants require two to six inches of water, while bog plants should be planted at water level.
Water gardens can be planted the first week of May. For several weeks, the water garden will remain greenish due to excess amount of algae. Then, the fish will take over eating the algae. The aquatic plants will remove carbon dioxide and nutrients from the water, making algae growth difficult. Once the ecosystem of your water garden becomes balanced, the algae growth will diminish and the water will remain clear. The water usually doesn't require changing during the growing.
Water gardens can be a real asset to you and your outside environment.