So you’ve taken the plunge so to speak and installed a swimming pool in your yard. The water is sparkling and you’re excited about having your very own place to swim and cool off during the summer. But once you’ve done a few butterfly strokes and take a look around, you may realize that something is missing, and that is the lack of landscaping around your pool. That is an easily solved problem though, and there are dozens of swimming pool landscaping ideas you can incorporate into your backyard design.
With a little effort and a couple of weekends devoted to the project, you should be able to carry out all of the swimming pool landscaping ideas you have on your own or with an extra hand to help. You could also hire a professional landscaper or contractor, but that could become expensive depending on what you want done. Be sure to ask for references before you hire anyone. It would also be a good idea to ask to see some previous landscaping work they’ve done. It’s best to come up with some ideas and decide how much you want to spend before you make a decision.
While the first thing you may want to do is start picking out plants or trees to spruce up your swimming pool area, you should actually consider safety first and install a fence if you don’t already have one. This will keep pets, strays and children from wandering too close to the edge and falling into the water. Even if you’ve taught your children or pets to keep back, you can’t be certain that will always be the case nor can you control the neighbor’s children or pets.
Fences don’t have to be ugly or expensive. You may want to invest in a privacy fence that completely surrounds your swimming pool. There are man made composite materials that look like wood but never rot or require painting. You could also opt for chain link and screen it by weaving vinyl or other strapping material through the links. You can also plant vines such as wisteria or honeysuckle so that they will grow over the fence. Just be sure that whatever type of vine you do plant won’t grow too big to be supported by the fence.
Having a concrete patio or paving blocks around your swimming pool will eliminate having to mow grass up close and the mess that could create in the water. There are new types of landscaping paving stones and blocks that are non-skid, so that will help with wet, slippery feet. There are also some types of interlocking landscaping blocks that are made from recycled plastics but look like stone. Those would create a softer area around your swimming pool.
The next thing you may want to consider is whether or not you want any trees nearby. Since most swimming pool owners want to swim in the sun, you don’t want to plant any type of tree that will create too much shade. You also don’t want to put a deciduous tree (one that drops it leaves in the fall) near your pool or you’ll be cleaning out leaves every autumn. You also need to consider that many evergreen trees will drop needles or pine cones and you probably don’t want any type of fruit tree either. Tree roots are another thing to consider when you’re thinking about swimming pool landscaping. It may take years, but trees planted too close to your in-ground pool could eventually grow roots that could damage it.
Container plants may be your best bet as you can move them from place to place. Even a large pot can be easily moved if it is placed on a portable plant stand with wheels. Plants that tolerate a good deal of sun would probably be best. Marigolds, petunias, rose moss, flowering kale and even types of mint would do well. But remember that any type of flower could attract bees, so keep that in mind.
A small rock garden or a boarder of rocks might also compliment your pool and create a natural look to your landscaping. Even doubling up on the water aspect and putting a small waterfall nearby can create a unique complementary design. There are inexpensive small waterfall kits or ready-to-go waterfalls available at most landscaping or garden centers for under a hundred dollars.
Lighting is also vital in your landscaping plans if you intend to swim at night. There are dozens of rechargeable solar lights with stakes that you can put just about anywhere. The rechargeable batteries will eventually have to be replaced, but these types of lights are great for landscaping because you can move them easily. You can also opt for permanent lighting and will probably have to have a contractor or electrician install those. With lighting for swimming pool landscaping, be sure to highlight not only the pool but walkways, paths and seating areas.
Speaking of seating, having some comfortable lounges or lawn chairs is also important for when you get tired of swimming and want out of the water for a while. Lawn furniture can be incorporated into any swimming pool landscaping, and the furniture comes in many different styles and colors. You can go for basic folding chairs, padded lounges, round glass tables with umbrellas or wicker furniture.
And if you want to mix opposites, a portable fire pit might also be a great addition to your landscaping plans. You need to check with local building codes to see how far away from a building it needs to be placed. You’ll also need to make sure you don’t have it up wind of the swimming pool or the smoke will ruin your evening. But that’s why a small portable one is great; you can move it anywhere depending on the weather conditions.
There really is no right or wrong when it comes to swimming pool landscaping ideas. Go with what works best for you, your yard and your pool and have fun with it. You can always go back and change something later if it doesn’t work for you.