Water features are very relaxing and very effective at cooling the environment. They also look great and the plants will help filter and oxygenate the air. I was looking at a local fountain (photo above) and realized it would be easy to add some vent holes to help cool a home.
Basic building process:
Build alternating layers of mortar and vent pipes with downward sloping thin stone such as slate on top that helps hide the vent holes. The vent pipes run perpendicular to the wall so air can blow through easily. Allow drying time and then add the next layer of mortar, vent pipes and stone. Repeat until you reach the desired height. (Too high and water will splash too much.) Use a grid of rebar for larger fountains. Build a collecting pool at the base about 2 feet wide. Add a pump and pipe that runs from the collecting pool to the top of the wall. Drill holes in the pipe that runs all along the top of the fountain so water will trickle down over the stone. You might want to build in some plant nooks in the wall, and add some potted plants and hanging plants. A small pump doesn’t use much electricity and can be powered with a small solar panel. Tile flooring (non-skid) near the fountain is a good idea because there will likely be some water that gets blown by the wind.
This water wall design would work great in a desert or tropical home or ecoresort rental unit such as this Earthbag Vaulted Guesthouse.