Morocco is located on the northwest corner of Africa. Water is essential in this hot, dry climate so fountains and pools are a constant in Moroccan gardens. These water features add not only the cool relief of water, but also a vibrant splash of colour. The concrete and stone water features so common in Europe and North America are instead highly decorative.
Fontaine et mosaÃ¯que marocaine image by Emmanuelle Combaud from Fotolia.com
The most common type of Moroccan fountain that can be found in gardens all over the world is a wall fountain. The fountain aspect of it is rather simple in design, which accounts for its versatility, as both an indoor and outdoor water feature. Rather than shooting upward, the water pours through a downward facing faucet into a small collecting pool (traditional fountains lack the faucet). The whole of the fountain is decorated with tile mosaics. The back wall of the fountain is the most standout aspect and it's on this surface that the most variety is found. While some of the back walls have geometric patterns involving only two colours set in a single pattern, it's possible to find very intricately designed ones filled with colour.
In Moroccan gardens, fountains aren't meant only for walls. Grand central fountains are also quite common. These fountains have either a shallow square or rectangular pool at their base. Unlike the fountains commonly seen in nearby Europe, these pools aren't a singular colour. The pools are covered in mosaic patterns. Every surface of the pool (both dry and wet) is covered in mosaics whether it's a raised pool or it's flush with the ground. Rising from the centre of the pool is the fountain itself. The fountain can be either a flat dish or a large bowl. Regardless of the shape, the flow of the water coming from it is at a minimum. Water doesn't shoot upward but instead flows softly down into the pool.
Pedestal fountains are also a part of Moroccan gardens. Like all other aspects of Moroccan garden architecture, this style of fountain is also decorated with mosaics and isn't overly elaborate in its shape. The base of the fountain is a wide cylindrical pedestal. The shape of the bowl is curved but not necessarily circular. One example of this style of fountain has a circular bowl that appears elongated on two ends creating a shape like a circle overlaid with an oval. The pedestal appears upward through the bowl in the shape of the spout from where the water flows.