When you are planning a swimming pool in your backyard, it is essential to think about the landscaping and how the overall design is going to work. Good landscaping will make your pool safer and more functional as well as ensuring it becomes a beautiful design feature. Here’s what good pool landscaping involves and why it matters, as well as our top tips for getting your design right.
What is pool landscaping and what does it involve?
Pool landscaping is the design of the area around your pool in your backyard. As well as plants, it also takes into account features like pool fencing, paving, decking, furniture and lighting, to create a beautiful and coordinated backyard area centred around the pool.
A good pool landscaping design will incorporate a number of different factors, including:
- Aesthetic appeal
- Lifestyle needs.
Getting the landscaping right can vastly improve the usability of your pool as well as its appearance.
What are the advantages of good pool landscaping?
An effective pool landscaping design has a number of important advantages for you as a swimming pool owner:
1. It makes your backyard look more attractive
One of the major benefits of a swimming pool is that it becomes an attractive focal point in your backyard. This can be shown off to the best advantage if you get the landscaping right.
From the positioning of your pool to the plants you choose to place around it and your lighting design, good pool landscaping will ensure that your pool looks beautiful whether in bright sunlight or illuminated artificially after dark, no matter which angle you are viewing it from.
2. It makes your pool safer
All backyard swimming pools in Australia have to comply with Australian Standard AS 1926, which ensures privately-owned pools are as safe as possible for children. Your landscaping design will need to take this into account, and can make the best use of the space to make sure your pool is a safe and healthy environment for the kids, as well as making it easier for you to supervise them in the pool.
3. It can improve the functionality of your pool area
Good pool landscaping covers the many different ways you will want to use your pool and the area around it. As well as creating easy access to the pool for swimming and relaxation, it will also support your entertainment needs, creating a sociable space around the pool, ideal for entertaining friends and family.
4. It can increase the value of your property
If you ever decide to move on and want to sell your home, it is important that your property is as appealing as possible to potential buyers. A well-landscaped backyard helps significantly with this. Your pool will instantly attract their attention as a beautiful feature, while the area around it will demonstrate the many different ways they can use the pool for fitness, relaxation and entertaining guests.
If your backyard looks attractive, this shows that time and care have been taken over the planning and maintenance of your property. This is highly important for potential buyers, as it means they will need to do less work on the home if they decide to buy it. Because of this, you are more likely to receive a higher price on your sale.
How to create a good pool landscaping design
Some pool owners have a clear idea of the landscaping look they want before their pool is even installed. Others are happier for the landscaping to evolve once the pool is in place. Either approach is fine, as your pool landscaping has to be all about what suits you and your property.
If you do have clear ideas from the beginning, it is important to communicate these to your pool company, who will take your vision into account when installing your pool.
Every pool landscaping design is different, and this is how it should be, as no two properties or owners are exactly alike. But there are a number of factors which every good pool landscaping design has in common:
1. The pool is central to the design
Your pool will always be the central design feature of your backyard. Because of this, it is essential to choose your pool before you start planning ideas for your landscaping design, as the size and shape of the pool will dictate the landscaping to a large degree. For example, is it an in-ground pool or will it be installed above ground? Is your pool long and narrow, or would you prefer a wider design? Is it a completely custom shape?
Once you have decided on a style of pool, you can then start thinking about how it will fit into the overall design of your backyard. For example, if you choose a Little Pool, it can be incorporated into most backyards easily as it sits completely above ground and does not take up a lot of space. Even in a small backyard, it is possible to landscape around a Little Pool to make the best possible use of the space, allowing plenty of room for recreation and entertainment.
2. Positioning is everything
Choosing the right positioning for your pool will make all the difference to the attractiveness of your backyard. The pool needs to look good from all angles, including from inside the house, as it needs to provide a view you will continue to enjoy looking at for many years to come.
To get your pool positioning right, think about the different ways you currently use your backyard, and how these will change once you have a pool. The pool needs to be integral to the design of the space, while still providing you with enough room to enjoy other recreational activities if this is what you choose. You need to plan your yard so the pool is easily accessible and the design functions well as a whole. A Little Pool, for example, can easily be accessed via steps at the side, so this needs to be taken into account when you are planning your design.
To make sure the pool looks good from inside your home, it helps to look at your backyard from the windows and think about how the pool will make a difference to the outdoor space. Choose the position which makes the pool look best from the windows, while still providing great access and functionality, making your yard appear coordinated and well thought-out.
3. Good design makes the pool safer
Safety is an extremely important consideration, as well as a legal requirement, so your landscaping design has to put this first. All backyard pools in Australia must comply with Australian Standard AS 1926. This means having pool fencing of at least 1.2 metres in height, all the way around the pool.
In order to make the pool even safer, you are required to have a Non-Climbable Zone of at least 900mm on all sides of the pool. There must be no tall objects such as tables or chairs within this zone, as children could climb them to get over the pool fencing. Because of this, you need to ensure your pool landscaping allows sufficient space to incorporate any furniture you want near the pool area, without it entering the Non-Climbable Zone.
If your pool will be used regularly by children, you should also think about positioning it so the pool can clearly be seen from all angles, making it easier for children to be supervised while swimming.
4. Think about your entertainment needs
What do you intend to use your pool for? This is a basic question which has a major impact on your pool landscaping. Some people simply intend to use the pool for exercise and relaxation, while others want to hold pool parties and barbeques at the poolside. Adults and children also have different usage needs which you should think about.
If you intend to relax by the pool regularly, you might want to think about installing some outdoor lounges and tables to make life comfortable. If you plan to eat and entertain by the poolside, you will need some sturdy, non-slip flooring, and some tables and chairs, as well as outdoor cooking facilities.
Before you plan your landscaping, it helps to sit down with your family or others who will be using the pool regularly, so you can discuss all your lifestyle needs and come up with a landscaping plan which caters for everyone.
5. Your pool landscaping should reflect your tastes
One of the most important elements of good pool landscaping is that you like it! You will be looking at your backyard every day, so it should be designed in a way that reflects your personal tastes. This extends to the type of paving or decking you choose, and even the plants you want around your pool. It is entirely up to you whether you prefer a modern, streamlined look with just a few planters, or a more natural feel with rockeries and ferneries.
Some people prefer the look of an in-ground pool to one which is installed fully above ground, but either can look extremely attractive with the right landscaping design. For example, Little Pools are designed to be installed above ground, but offer you several choices of exterior cladding so you can customise the appearance of your pool. Alternatively, if you choose a Little Pool without cladding, it is possible to landscape around the pool completely, making it a beautiful, integral feature of your backyard while still allowing for easy access to the pool.
Find out more about pool landscaping
Whichever style of landscaping you choose, it can help to have advice and support. At The Little Pool Co, we are always happy to answer all your questions about pool landscaping. Please contact us if you would like to know more.