June 16, 2014

Pool Landscaping Ideas: 5 Tips on the Best (And Worst) Plants to Put Around Your Pool

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Despite what the Beverly Hillbillies might have you think, a swimming pool is much more than a “cement pond.” It’s certain to be one of the highlights of your home: a place for family fun, summertime parties, and creating memories that will last a lifetime. That’s why it’s important to take a little extra time to plan the perfect landscape plantings around your pool—a space so important deserves to look as beautiful as can be!

Think About Maintenance

Landscaping around pools does require a bit more thought and planning, as flowering and fruiting plants and trees can shed their leaves, fruits, nuts, and seeds right into the water… requiring considerably more maintenance. For trees whose canopy is near your pool, consider the final size of the tree and it’s pruning needs. Setting up a ladder in the middle of your pool to do your spring pruning will not be an option. We suggest selecting lower-maintenance plants for poolside landscaping.


Whether you’re cultivating a minimalist, Zen-style environment or a more traditional backyard, containers are a brilliant pool landscaping idea. Not only are the containers themselves a great design feature, adding height and interest, but smaller containers can be moved to create more space for entertaining or to simply change up the look of your pool area.

Root Systems

Don’t forget your roots. Trees with extensive root systems, like oaks and willows, can actually damage pool infrastructure as they grow. Stick to shallower-rooted trees, or simply plant that beautiful willow on the other side of the yard!

Mosquito-Repelling Plants

For comfort as well as aesthetics, create a poolside garden with natural mosquito-repelling plants: certain oils found in basil, thyme, lemon balm, and marigolds have been shown to reduce the number of mosquitos in their immediate area!

Raised Planting Beds

Retaining wall planting beds are a gorgeous way to add both durable structure to your poolscape and the softening texture and color of plantings. A raised planting bed wall built into your patio can double as built-in seating, and as a bonus, eliminates the need for edging the planting area. Retaining walls are a great way to create separate outdoor areas, for instance separating the pool area from your outdoor dining area.

Curious about the best plants for your pool area? Contact our expert Long Island landscape design team at Above All Masonry to learn more. We’d love to help you create a complete vision for your pool area.

Related: 3 Pool Designs for Sloped Land.


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