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Water to create a peaceful cocoon

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AQUARIUMS: Are a great way to create a restful ambience. Photo: K. Pichumani
AQUARIUMS: Are a great way to create a restful ambience. Photo: K. Pichumani

M.RAGHURAM

Aquariums are wonderful ways to create a serene atmosphere for better work.

European literary historians say that before Jules Verne wrote the 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea he looked into his garden pond and sat there for hours together watching the fish move and the life inside the pond. This was where he first conceptualised the `bathysphere' that is popularly known in modern times as the submarine or `U' Boats. The Nautilus as it was called in his book might have made an impression on the readers but it is still a fact that his observation of water - its dynamics and the living creatures inside gave him the inspiration to write an all time favourite book. Ancient Indian school of Vaastu Shilpa (science of construction) also talks about the importance of water bodies inside the house.

Soothing sounds

All over the world small water bodies in the premises of houses, offices, public places have their own charm and importance. Whether or not they have any effect on the people is a different story altogether and needs deeper study. But one is certain the water bodies have been there since time immemorial and they have become an integral part of an architect's design plans for every large, big, medium and small living and work places.The sound of cascading water has a soothing effect on the mind. The waterspout inside house or office emanates positive energy makes the inmates behave well and spread happiness and efficiency around them. The modern water bodies inside the buildings might need a few electrical gadgets like a pump to circulate the water and perhaps a filter to keep it clean. But nothing like clean still water stored in a leak proof tank sprinkled with round pebbles, some sand, water plants and some fish. They could be had in every house with a small garden space and with minimum of cost. All you need is a concrete ring (those they fabricate to sink into a well) some cement and gravel for making it leak proof in the bottom. Once the structure is set one can let loose his creativity to do the rest. It is better if the tank protrudes at least a foot above the ground so that some sloping can be done which could be covered with common grass.

Cost effective

The water plants like Aqua rose, Fox tail, Amazon and many others available with the aquarium shops can be planted inside the pond and a water Lily (available in pink, white and purple colours with the nurseries) will complete the works. There are families, which have developed their own water bodies spending not more than Rs. 300, and if the materials are ready they can be built in less than one day with at least two members of the family contributing their labour. Mahaveer Jain of Moodbidri who has one of the great looking home water body says `the water keeps clean automatically if there are water plants and fish. The ideal shape for such water bodies is square and the smallest can measure 3 square feet, preferably built in rough granite stones protruding one feet above the ground'. Introducing fish into the pond is most important. The best species will be the Guppies. They are fast, small and they devour mosquito larvae and cost almost nothing either to procure or to maintain, they are also fast breeders.

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