10 DIY Pool Landscaping Ideas That Will Turn Your Backyard into a Secluded Oasis


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Are you tired of looking at a plain, uninspired pool in your backyard? Are you jealous of all your neighbors’ lavish landscaping features surrounding their pools? Don’t despair! With some basic DIY knowledge and a little bit of elbow grease, you can transform your backyard into a magical oasis.

Swimming pool landscaping doesn’t need to be overly complicated or expensive, (or even hard to do!) so don’t let money be the determining factor for how great your yard looks. All it takes is good ideas and the willingness to do some basic work yourself.

In this article, I’ll give you some creative tips for DIY Pool Landscaping – including where to start, which tools you need, how to design with safety in mind, and other aspects of transforming any outdoor space into an amazing retreat.

By the way – before we get too far along here, if you want to connect with other homeowners and builders and get more great ideas for your home to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group, Remodel Reality here.

Planning Your Pool Landscape Design

When it comes to creating your own DIY pool landscape, planning out your design is essential for achieving the perfect result.

You have to take into account all the factors when coming up with your design, like your budget, the size and shape of the pool, and the existing structures or landscaping in the area.

One of the biggest factors to consider when deciding on a design is creating a focal point. This can be done by incorporating a water feature or sculpture into the center of your pool area.

You should also aim to break up space by using different zones within the area; this could mean adding seating areas, outdoor kitchens, fire pits and more. Not only will this make the pool area look visually appealing but it will also ensure that each part has its own purpose and function.

We’ll talk more about these things below but by following these principles you can transform your backyard into something uniquely yours – an enjoyable and functional space that reflects your personal style. With careful planning you’ll be able to create a beautiful pool landscape that you can enjoy with family and friends for years to come!

Choosing the Right Landscaping Materials and Plants

Choosing the right landscaping materials and plants is crucial when it comes to DIY pool landscaping. One of the best ways to create an attractive and functional pool area is by using different building materials, such as large pavers, wooden decks, and stone walkways.

Large pavers are an excellent choice for creating a seamless transition between your pool area and surrounding landscape. Wooden decks provide a warm and natural feel, while a stone walkway adds texture and dimension to your space. Consider using a combination of these materials to create a unique and personalized look for your pool area.

In addition to choosing the right building materials, selecting the right plants is equally important when it comes to DIY pool landscaping.

There are many types of plants that are suitable for pool landscaping, including tropical plants, colorful plants, and low-maintenance landscape plants.

Tropical plants, like palm trees and elephant ear plants, create a lush and exotic feel, while colorful plants like hibiscus and bougainvillea add a pop of color and vibrancy to your space. Low-maintenance landscape plants, such as ornamental grasses and evergreens, are easy to care for and provide year-round interest.

When selecting plants for your pool area, it’s important to consider factors such as sun exposure and water requirements. Choose plants that are well-suited for your climate and that can handle exposure to chlorinated pool water.

Make sure to select plants that won’t shed too many leaves or flowers into your pool, as this can create extra maintenance and cleaning work. By selecting the right plants and materials, you can create a beautiful and functional pool area that you and your family can enjoy for years to come.

Sago palm tree on a pool deckChoosing the Best Materials

When enhancing your pool area, it’s important to choose materials that are well-suited to the surrounding area and that can withstand exposure to pool water and sunlight. River rock can be a great choice for creating a natural and rustic look, while pavers or tiles can provide a clean and modern look. When selecting materials, consider the surrounding area and the variety of colors that will complement your pool area.

Tools & Supplies Will You Need For DIY Pool Landscaping

If you’re looking to spruce up your pool area with some DIY landscaping, you’ll need the right tools and supplies to get the job done properly. The exact items you need will depend on the size and scope of your project, but here are some common essentials:

  1. A few key tools for digging, spreading, and leveling soil such as shovels, rakes, and hoes.
  2. Pruning shears, hedge clippers, and saws for trimming plants and trees.
  3. Garden gloves to protect your hands while handling soil or vegetation.
  4. A wheelbarrow or garden cart is essential for transporting supplies such as soil, plants, mulch and more between different areas of the poolscape.
  5. Quality landscape fabric helps keep weeds from sprouting and helps maintain even moisture in the soil. Additionally, adding a layer of mulch on top is a great way to complete this task.
  6. Use large pavers or walkways constructed from wood deck or stone in order to create seamless transition between the pool and surrounding landscape.
  7. Fencing or privacy screens can help create an intimate atmosphere and add a feeling of seclusion around your pool area.
  8. Installing a water feature like a fountain or waterfall can bring an extra level of peace into the environment as well as add a touch of beauty to the landscape.
  9. String lights, tiki torches, or solar lights can set a relaxed mood around your pool while also bringing out its best features at dusk when things become slightly subdued.

Don’t forget about all the necessary cleaning supplies like skimmers, vacuums, brushes and more that are used to keep your pool sparkling clean year round.

Plus don’t forget about stocking up on chlorine levels balancers/test strips pH balancing agents too! Also, be sure to install a high-quality filtration system so it’s easy to cycle clean water in your pool immediately rather than waiting days at time for each refill cycle.

No matter what type of DIY landscaping project you plan on undertaking near your swimming hole make sure to assess the full scope ahead allowing yourself plenty enough time so you have everything ready to make that dream come true.

Here’s a quick reference table for the tools and supplies needed for DIY pool landscaping:

Tool/Supply Purpose
Shovels, rakes, and hoes Digging, spreading, and leveling soil
Pruning shears, hedge clippers, and saws Trimming plants and trees
Garden gloves Protection while working with plants and soil
Wheelbarrow or garden cart Transporting soil, plants, and supplies
Landscape fabric and mulch Weed prevention and soil moisture retention
River rock or gravel Great for bedding, ground cover and texture
Large pavers, wooden deck, pavers, or stone walkway Creating a transition between pool area and landscape
Fencing or privacy screen As required by law in some places – creating a secluded and relaxing pool area
Water feature Adding a peaceful and calming atmosphere
String lights, tiki torches, or solar lights Creating an inviting atmosphere
Pool cleaning supplies Skimming, vacuuming, and brushing pool
Chemicals Balancing pH levels and maintaining proper chlorine levels
Filtration system Keeping pool water clean and healthy

DIY Pool Landscaping Projects

There are so many DIY pool landscaping projects that you can do to add character and functionality to your pool area.

It could be something minor or small in scope like creating a rock garden, installing a privacy fence, and adding a water feature.

A privacy fence is a must-have if you’ve got a pool, and here in Florida (as I would assume most other states as well) a fence is required by law.

Not only are they required, but they can also be a great visual barrier and part of your landscaping plan for your pool area, creating a secluded and relaxing space.

Adding a water feature, such as a fountain or waterfall, can create a peaceful and calming atmosphere around your pool.

In addition to these projects, consider adding string lights, tiki torches, or solar lights to create an inviting ambiance around your pool area. String lights can be draped over trees, pergolas, or fencing, while tiki torches can be installed along the perimeter of your pool. Solar lights can be added to pathways or other areas to provide subtle lighting and ambiance.

But this is really just the tip of the iceberg – there are so many other great ideas.

Here is a collection of ideas to get the inspirational juices flowing so you can create the perfect poolscape.

Create A Visual Focal Point

Creating a visual focal point is an important part of DIY landscaping around your pool. A focal point is a design element that serves as the centerpiece and draws the eye in your outdoor area. It can be anything – a water feature, sculpture, outdoor plant, or other element that stands out.

With it, you’ll create depth and texture to make your poolside inviting and appealing. When selecting a focal point for your pool area, think about what works best according to its size, the surrounding landscape, and your personal style.

If you want something calming and peaceful consider going with a water feature like a fountain or waterfall. Or choose something unique and creative like a sculpture or interesting plant to give your space added personality. There are many options available for creating an impressive focal point at your pool so get creative!

Adding Flower Beds & Potted Plants

Start by adding some beautiful flower beds to the existing landscape for a splash of color and natural appeal. You could also set up a seating area with chairs or benches to provide comfortable areas for gathering and relaxing.

Creating beautiful flower beds around your pool is an easy and effective way to transform your outdoor area into a vibrant, inviting atmosphere. When selecting plants, opt for ones that are appropriate for the climate and can withstand exposure to chlorinated water. To make your life easier, look for plants and ground covers that don’t shed too many leaves or flowers into the water. This will help you avoid having to scoop out bits of foliage from the pool on a daily basis.

Flower Beds

Choose a variety of flowering annuals and perennials in several different colors to create a stunning visual effect. Consider layering different sizes and heights of plants as well, which will allow you to create subtle patterns that draw the eye towards certain areas or provide more depth to the overall design. Add touches like stone pathways or accent rocks around certain flower beds to complete the look and make it truly unique.

Potted Plants

Enhancing your pool area couldn’t be easier with the addition of potted plants. Adding a variety of colorful and textured plants to the area will brighten up your outdoor space while adding depth and life. Make sure to pick plants that can tolerate both direct sunlight and water splashes from the pool, as well as complementing the existing landscaping. Go for a wild and vibrant look with flowers or choose something more classical like evergreen shrubs – it’s totally up to you. With so many options available, you can easily find something that suits your style and adds something special to your pool area.

Ground Cover

Ground cover plants are an excellent way to spruce up your outdoor space, especially around pools. Ground covers are low-growing plants that spread across the ground and can not only help prevent weed growth and soil erosion, but also look great. Popular ground cover options such as creeping thyme, moss, and sedum all have their own unique features that will elevate the look of your landscape design.

These plants can help bridge the gap between your pool area and the surrounding landscape in a natural way. The diverse colors and textures of these ground covers combined with the environment create a stunning visual effect which will capture any onlookers’ attention. Ground covers also provide practical Benefits such as reducing soil erosion and suppressing weed growth. Planting ground cover is an easy and efficient way to beautify your outdoor areas from season to season.

With proper care and maintenance, these flower beds will bring beauty and life to your pool area year-round!

Creating a Seating Area

If you’re looking for another way to transform your pool area, why not create a seating area for yourself? You can choose from a variety of outdoor furniture like chairs, couches, or chaise lounges. Placing an outdoor rug and making sure to incorporate some colorful pillows, will ensure both comfort and style. This can be the perfect spot to relax with a good book, entertain guests or simply reboot and have some true rest and relaxation. With just these simple additions you can elevate your pool area in no time!

Incorporate a Fire Pit

To really draw people in, why not add a fire pit that can be used on cool evenings when guests come over? Bringing these elements together can transform your pool area into an inviting outdoor space where you can enjoy quality time with family and friends.

Adding a fire pit to your backyard oasis around the pool is an excellent way to create a cozy and pleasant atmosphere on chilly nights. My wife’s favorite thing about our own backyard landscaping is the fire pit.

Depending on how permanent you want the fire pit to be and how much ambiance you’re looking for, there are several different types of fire pits that you can choose from.

Portable units, built-in structures, and gas-powered units are all options. Pick a design and material that matches the aesthetic of your pool area for a complete look.

Make sure to always keep safety in mind when using a fire pit and stay compliant with any local regulations or guidelines regarding their use. This will ensure that everyone stays happy and safe as they relax around the warmth of your backyard fire pit!

Installing Pool Lights

Installing pool lights is a great way to improve the aesthetics and functionality of your pool area. Pool lighting can provide a beautiful touch and extend your swimming time into the evening hours.

We’ve strung lights along our porch line that we got from Costco in our back yard and it really makes for an amazing atmosphere for those fun evenings outdoors when we’re grilling and having a good time.

When deciding on what type of lighting you would like to install, consider LED lights, solar lights, or rope lights. LED lights can offer an excellent combination of brightness and efficiency, while solar lights are an ecologically friendly option that doesn’t require electricity or wiring.

Rope lights are a versatile option that come in all shapes and sizes suitable for any situation, no matter how small or large the area may be. Brighten up your backyard space with pool lighting for a great way to enjoy swimming under the stars after dark.

Building a Retaining Wall

If your backyard has a sloped or uneven topography, building a retaining wall is a wonderful way to improve its look and accessibility. Not only will it bring a uniform surface to the pool area, but it can also double as an eye-catching feature in your outdoor space. Made from attractive materials such as brick, stone, and concrete, retaining walls offer an extra level of dimension and texture that can bring your yard to life.

They’re perfect for creating raised flower beds or separating sections of the landscape as well. Constructing a carefully-designed retaining wall is also an excellent way to create level walkways or flat patio areas in otherwise hilly terrain. Depending on what type of material you choose, they can last anywhere from 20 years up to several centuries with proper maintenance – giving you plenty of time to enjoy your terraced grounds.

Building a Deck Area

If you’re looking to build a tranquil, peaceful area in your backyard, consider constructing a deck. Having a leveled and flat surface is ideal for lounging and entertaining, while also adding an intriguing visual appeal to your outdoor space.

Building a deck area around your pool gives you the perfect opportunity create an outdoor kitchen area too for grilling and eating outside during those times of year when the weather is nice. We’ve gotten so much use out of our deck – eating outside is a normal occurrence for my family when weather permits.

With this in mind, it’s important to select materials that are specifically adapted to the climate where you live and can withstand water from your pool and direct sun rays. While taking these steps will ensure that you get the best-looking results and make sure your deck will last for years.

Designing For Your Above-Ground Pool Area

If you have an above-ground pool in your backyard, you can create a beautiful and functional outdoor space too. Here are some things you need to keep in mind specifically in reference to above-ground pool landscaping.

When it comes to landscaping your above-ground pool, one of the important factors to consider is visibility from different angles. Since these pools are elevated, they are often seen from the neighboring yards or upper levels of nearby buildings. You’ll want to take into account the visual effect of the pool from all sides so that you can create a look that will be pleasing and attractive while still maintaining your privacy as much as possible.

One way to handle visibility issues is to add a privacy fence around your pool area. This can be made out of materials such as wood, or vinyl and serves two purposes – providing privacy on top of looking good. Additionally, a fence can also offer an extra layer of safety by helping keep any children or animals away from the pool itself (and in many places, building codes require privacy fences for pools anyway.)

Another option for addressing visibility is to incorporate design elements that help seamlessly blend the pool into its surroundings. For example, you could use rocks or other landscaping pieces for this purpose so that your pool looks cohesive with nature’s beauty, but more on this in a minute.

To give your above-ground pool a personal touch and make it truly unique, there are several possible design options you can explore. One classic choice is adding a deck around your pool area – this combination will elevate its look and be useful for lounging around in the sun or hosting friends over for some fun.

Other ideas include creating a rock garden feature, utilizing some potted plants or decorative items, or even just incorporating a water feature like a fountain! With all of these elements combined properly with appropriate attention paid towards making sure it looks visually stunning no matter what angle its seen from (while addressing any privacy concerns), you will be able to construct an elegant yet functional outdoor oasis that all your family and friends can enjoy.

Tall Plants & Trees For Privacy

When it comes to selecting tall plants and trees for DIY landscaping for an above-ground pool, there are a few important criteria that you should consider. Primary among them is the amount of shade and privacy that each plant or tree can provide. Furthermore, you’ll want to choose introductions well-suited to your climate; those that are able to survive in extreme heat, bright sunlight, and even occasional dousings from shallow waters.

For these reasons — among others — arborvitae is a great choice. This evergreen tree has a dense foliage structure and a tall but narrow shape that facilitates the providing of copious amounts of much-needed shade around your pool area. Additionally, it requires little maintenance and can weather soil types with ease.

Bamboo also reigns as one of the top choices when it comes to landscaping an above-ground pool. Its fast growth rate offers increased respite for eyebrows baking beneath searing summer skies in double time compared to its competitors. As if this weren’t enough, bamboo produces a natural atmosphere within the landscape while simultaneously absorbing noise from exuberant neighbors and busy thoroughfares.

The ornamental magnolia provides both visual interest as well as deep shades protect from blazing rays: its large flowers make for attractive planting addition scattered throughout your landscape design, while its fanning foliage never fails in providing widespread protection for those lazing adjacent to their beloved gaming ground- central feature pool included!

Palm trees offer up a classic look reminiscent of beach vacations or tropical locales: they come in all shapes and sizes (to suit everyone’s taste) while injecting elegance into any contemporary designed outside space quite effortlessly; especially one graced by an exquisite above ground pool!

If you’re looking for something slightly more differentiated yet still retaining high levels of visualization capabilities then redbud would be the perfect choice: characterized by pink or purple blossoms strewn along her branches she is certainly not without her beauty while growing potential highs predictably exceeding thirty feet!

Leyland cypress caters more toward quaintly constructed privacy screens due to her tremendous height (60 feet at full maturity!). Far from static though this evergreen does possess charm regardless with her loosely bundled leaf clusters often swaying gently beneath any given breeze.

The irrepressible banana tree also puts forward its own credentials with 20 foot heights complimented by large leaves which gleam golden brown under the radiant light washing over any overwatering basin we may install in our garden’s center piece – why not? After all, who doesn’t dream of transforming their backyard utopia into a small personal paradise?

Ultimately though when selecting decoration in proximity to such an eye catching sight you owe it yourself to find vegetation specifically suited towards satisfying your own individual needs/tastes/etc; i mean really no two people eco systems will be exactly alike!

Maintaining Your Pool Landscape

Once you’ve completed your DIY pool landscaping project, it’s important to maintain it properly to ensure that it continues to look its best. Regular maintenance can also help to extend the life of your pool area and save you money in the long run. One important aspect of pool maintenance is cleaning. Regularly clean your pool by skimming the surface of the water to remove debris, brushing the walls and floor to prevent algae buildup, and vacuuming to remove any dirt or debris.

Another important aspect of pool landscaping maintenance is maintaining your plants and landscape. Regularly trim your plants and hedges to keep them looking neat and tidy, and prevent them from encroaching on the pool area. Add mulch to the soil around your plants to help retain moisture and prevent weed growth. Regularly sweep or blow away any leaves, debris or other loose material that may collect in your pool area.

In addition to maintaining your landscaping, it’s important to have a good filtration system to keep your pool water clean and healthy. Regularly check and clean your pool’s filter, skimmer basket, and pump to ensure that they are functioning properly. Maintaining proper water chemistry is also important to ensure that your pool stays clear and free of algae. Test your pool water regularly, and add any necessary chemicals to balance pH levels and maintain proper chlorine levels.

Overall, regular maintenance is key to keeping your DIY pool landscaping looking beautiful and functional. By regularly cleaning your pool, maintaining your landscaping, and ensuring that your pool’s filtration system is working properly, you can enjoy a clean and healthy pool area for years to come.

Final thoughts

Having a backyard pool doesn’t have to mean giving up on design or creating an atmosphere of peace. Instead, you can choose to make it a tranquil oasis that you’ll enjoy every time you step outside.

Start by bringing in some potted plants as part of your pool landscaping ideas. Put them around the edges to create a frame and add pops of color. For more impact, look for different heights, shapes and textures in your plants. You can also consider adding a deck area where you can relax with friends and family members. Consider using wood or composite material – both are durable and will provide years of enjoyment. Look for high-quality materials such as vinyl or stone that require minimal maintenance yet still look great throughout the year.

Finally, don’t forget about lighting! Adding lights near your pool will give the area an inviting glow at night while helping to define borders for ease of movement around the yard. With small touches like these, you’ll be able to turn any backyard into an escape from the everyday hustle and bustle – all within the comfort of your own home.

Creating a backyard pool area that is both beautiful and tranquil is totally within reach! You can easily transform any ordinary pool into a peaceful, serene escape with a few simple additions: potted plants, a deck area, and the right lighting.

Plan out the details of your outdoor oasis with careful thought—add furniture that is comfortable and inviting, arrange potted plants in aesthetically pleasing groupings around the edges of your pool deck, and strategically place lights to create an ambient atmosphere to help you relax after a busy day. When done right, your backyard pool will be not only visually pleasing but also a private haven where you can unwind far away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

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Rob Orr

Me and my family have lived through a nightmare of a remodeling project gone wrong, making countless mistakes including placing trust in the wrong hands. Despite these setbacks, we took matters into our own hands for many aspects of the remodel, ensuring quality workmanship guided by expert advice. Through my personal experiences, I've created RemodelReality.com. My mission is not only to share the pitfalls we encountered but also the successes we achieved by combining our efforts with trusted professionals. By sharing both the highs and lows of our journey, I aim to help others navigate their own remodeling projects with greater confidence, ensuring they benefit from our lessons learned.

2 thoughts on “10 DIY Pool Landscaping Ideas That Will Turn Your Backyard into a Secluded Oasis”

  1. I appreciate you sharing these DIY pool landscaping suggestions. What are some low-maintenance plants that might spruce up the area surrounding the pool? I’m grateful for the motivation!

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