in ground pools

Putting in a backyard pool is a great investment from multiple perspectives. For one, in ground pools can increase the value of a home by up to 8% (which can soften the impact of the initial cost of installing them, since in ground pools normally run somewhere between $20,000 and $50,000). But even beyond financial benefits, having your own swimming pool is an investment in yourself, your family and your friends, giving you a fun and relaxing spot to exercise, hang out and entertain.

But what if you’re looking for a little more than a standard residential pool? Well, by choosing to work with custom pool builders, you can get a one-of-a-kind pool design. But you can also liven up your look with appropriate landscaping; great pool landscaping can be the difference between a generic suburban backyard and a lush oasis. Just be sure to keep in mind these seven tips when choosing plants to surround your pool:

  • They Should Like Sunlight — a Lot
    When gauging the amount of sunlight plants around the pool will receive, you need to remember that they’ll be getting reflected light off the water and any light pool patio materials (the same factors that mean you’ll sunburn more quickly by the pool).
  • They Shouldn’t Drop Too Many Leaves
    Trees or other plants that drop leaves either constantly or seasonally make extra work both for you and for your pool’s cleaning equipment.
  • They Should Hold Up to Chlorine
    In the course of cleaning and using your pool, it’s likely that any vegetation in the immediate vicinity will get splashed once in a while. So anything you plant should be able to hold up to chlorine and other pool chemicals (or salt, if you have a saltwater pool).
  • They Shouldn’t Attract Bees
    Normally, attracting bees to your garden is a good thing. But it’s not a good idea around a pool, both because people are likely to get stung and because quite a few bees will end up drowning in your pool.
  • They Should Offer Some Privacy
    All pools should be surrounded by a safety fence at least four feet tall, but these fences often don’t provide as much privacy as you’d like for hanging out in a swimsuit. Choose climbing vines or taller trees and shrubs to shield your pool from public view.
  • They Shouldn’t Have Spreading Roots
    Don’t plant anything with large root systems too near an in ground pool, as this could damage the underlying structure of it.
  • They Should Be Easy to Care For
    You’ll probably want to spend your time by the pool sunbathing or reading a book, not doing yardwork, so it’s best to pick plants that won’t require constant nurturing.

Do you have any other ideas about landscaping around in ground pools? Share them in the comments.