5 Easy Pool Landscaping Ideas for 2017

As temperatures will soon start to rise, it's time to start thinking about how you're going to make your pool area AWESOME this year. Lots of pool parties, games and celebrations are a must, of course. But what about the landscaping around your pool?

Your landscaping plays an important role in how serene and welcoming your swimming pool looks. Good landscaping can make the difference between a gorgeous pool and a drab one. If you're like most pool owners, you probably spruced up the landscaping once, years ago, and then it became an afterthought. Maybe you added some new plants here and there, but otherwise you haven’t done much.

So why not get a little more creative this year?

You don't have to overhaul the whole landscape to make a noticeable change. You can drastically enhance your pool area by making a few affordable updates.

Here are a few ideas to consider:

1) Trees, trees, trees
Yes, more trees often means more tree debris in your pool. But there are many types of trees that produce less debris and are easy to maintain. In addition to beautifying your pool area, mature trees offer shade and privacy. Cypress and Japanese maples are popular options for swimming pool landscapes. If you're worried about falling leaves later in the summer, consider placing the trees on the outer perimeter of your pool area. Even just a few new young trees can dramatically change the look of the landscape.

2) Shrubbery
If you're adding a few trees on the outer perimeter, mix things up with some shrubbery slightly closer to your pool. Many types of bushes are easy to maintain, while adding visual interest to your pool area. For greater impact, go with different colors. There are no shortage of green bushes that are ideal for pool areas, but you can add color with varieties like golden euonymus, hydrangea, rhododendron and butterfly bush – each of which generally thrive here in Central PA

3) Ferns
When in doubt, go with ferns. There are many different hardy ferns that can enhance your pool area, and they're generally very easy to plant. In Central PA (zone 6), consider options like Lady in Red (aka Red-stemmed Lady), Japanese Painted Fern, Hayscented Fern and Autumn Fern. Check with your local nursery, greenhouse or landscaper for even more ideas. They will be able to provide more specific suggestions based on your location and the amount of sunlight and shade that your pool area receives.

4) Pots and planters
Pots and planters are a great way to add more visual dimension and color to your pool and patio area. Even if you've got a lot of in-ground plants and shrubs, you can enhance the space even further with some well-placed planters. There are endless options to choose from: sleek and modern, ornate and stately, round and square, vibrant and neutral-hued. So you can design your space around your individual style. Consider elevating some planters off the ground (on a stand, bench or other fixed object), which will create even more visual interest.

5) Lighting
When it comes to your pool and patio area, lighting is your friend. There is perhaps no better way to add a warm ambiance to your outdoor space, especially if you stay outside during the evening hours.

Landscape and path lights, low to the ground, are classic favorites, but don't forget hanging options like string lights. Just be careful about placing any lighting directly above the pool and check with your municipality about code restrictions. Always have your lighting professionally installed by a skilled electrician.