A swimming pool can be a great accessory for many homes. However, it can be difficult to know what type of landscaping looks best around these aquatic playgrounds. The following guide provides simple tips and tricks on how to landscape around your pool.
Finding the Right Soil
Before starting any landscaping project, it’s a good idea to make sure that the soil surrounding a pool is suitable for plants. In some cases, pool installation companies will use a combination of sand and gravel to fill in areas around a pool. While this sand and gravel may not be visible, it can impact the root systems of any plants located in a pool area.
To find out if the earth surrounding your pool is full of sand and gravel, it’s a good idea to dig a series of holes every 10 feet. These holes should be at least two feet deep. If you hit sand or gravel, it may be necessary to add a layer of topsoil to the ground surrounding your pool. If you don’t, any plants that are added to the area may end up dying over time.
Avoiding Root Damage
One potential area of concern when adding plants around a pool is growth of the root system. Some bushes and trees have root systems that can extend for dozens of feet in any direction. If a tree or a bush is planted next to a pool, there is a small chance that the roots could damage a pool liner or tilework.
Some types of plants can cause extreme damage to a pool. For example, aspen trees have root systems that can extend up to 100 feet from the tree itself. Other plants, such as bamboo, have been known to pierce vinyl pool liners as they grow. Some types of bamboo can grow up to three feet a day, which can be extremely harmful to a pool.
To reduce the odds of these things happening, it’s a good idea to make sure that a pool is surrounded by smaller plants and bushes. For example, geranium can be a great ground cover for many landscaping projects. Since geranium bushes don’t have root systems that spread very long distances, it’s unlikely you’ll encounter any problems with root damage. When looking at inground pool pricing, you’ll be grateful that you don’t have to replace a damage vinyl liner.
Backwashing and Pools
Most swimming pools use a sand filter to eliminate particulate matter from a swimming pool. While sand filters are very effective at keeping swimming pools clean, they do require regular maintenance. The most common type of maintenance for sand filters is called backwashing. When a sand filter is backwashed, water is run in reverse through the filter. The water then drains out of the filter and onto the ground.
Since swimming pools usually have chlorine in them, backwashing a pool can cause significant quantities of chlorine to enter the soil. If you have a saltwater pool, backwashing can actually make your soil so toxic that plants won’t be able to grow at all.
To reduce the odds of these problems, it’s essential to have a proper drainage system installed with a swimming pool. If your house has access to a public sewer, make sure that any wastewater from backwashing enters the sewage system. If your home doesn’t have access to a public septic system, it’s a good idea to drain your backwash into an area far away from any landscaping.
By following the steps in the guide above, you’ll be able to create a lush, beautiful landscape surrounding your pool.
Author: Tommy Harthrob