Your own backyard swimming pool is a must-have element of the Australian outdoor lifestyle. It creates a perfect private spot for exercising, relaxing, and enjoying quality time with family and friends, as well as adding value to your home. But have you given enough thought to the design of your pool and the area around it?
Here’s why swimming pool landscaping matters, along with some top project management tips and landscaping ideas.
The importance of good pool landscaping
Getting your swimming pool landscaping right is important for a number of reasons:
1. It increases the value of your property
Research shows that a private pool in the backyard is the number one feature Australian home buyers and renters look for in a property. But your pool will not be nearly as attractive if it is badly designed and the area around it is poorly maintained.
A well-landscaped backyard makes a property much more appealing, and your pool area should be the centrepiece of your yard’s design. Getting it right will add significant value to your home, as it provides an important leisure space as well as showcasing the outside of your property in its best light.
2. It makes your pool safer
A private pool is a safer swimming space for children than a public pool or beach, as it makes it much easier for you to supervise them and keep them safe with no distractions. It is also a more relaxing environment, especially for young kids who are just getting used to the water and learning to swim.
However, if you want to make sure your kids are as safe in the water as possible, it’s essential to get your swimming pool landscaping right. All fences and barriers around your pool have to comply with Australian Standard AS 1926, which is designed with child safety in mind. Fences and barriers must meet the height requirements, and all gates must be fitted with self-closing and latching devices.
It is also vital that your pool area is landscaped so there are no objects which a child could climb onto to get over the pool fence. Chairs and tables need to be kept a safe distance away from all pool fences, and you need to keep safety in mind at all times when planning your pool landscaping.
3. It makes the space more usable
Your backyard should be an extension of your living area, enabling you to enjoy the outdoor lifestyle to the full. Your pool should be the centrepiece of this, creating a beautiful design feature as well as a space for swimming and relaxing, but the best pool designs allow for the rest of the yard to be highly functional, too.
How to plan your swimming pool landscaping
All home renovations need careful and thorough planning, and this is especially important for pool landscaping. There are a number of essential things you need to consider when looking at pool designs:
1. What is your budget?
Before you start considering landscaping ideas, you need to sit down and work out exactly what you can afford. Remember to take every detail into account, including the pool heating and lighting costs of your pool and its surrounding areas.
Once you have worked out the maximum amount you can afford to spend, you can then start planning your design. At this stage, it’s worth talking to a professional landscaping designer to find out what you can realistically achieve with the budget you have.
2. How will you use the space?
Your pool landscaping design should be compatible with your lifestyle. If you’re a dedicated swimmer, you will probably be happy for the pool to completely dominate your backyard. But if you have a large circle of friends and like to entertain regularly, you’ll need to factor in a patio and eating area to create a truly sociable space for your guests.
Keen gardeners and nature lovers will want to save plenty of space for trees, plants and shrubs, and maybe a lawn. However, if you have children who will be using the pool regularly, you should make sure trees and plants don’t block your view of the pool, so you can supervise the kids easily.
3. Is there enough shelter?
When planning your pool landscaping, you also need to take the weather into account. Providing plenty of shelter around the pool area will help to protect you and your loved ones from the damaging effects of UV rays from the sun. It will also be welcomed by your friends if an unexpected rain storm strikes in the middle of your barbeque!
4. Does it coordinate well with your property?
If your swimming pool landscaping is going to work well, it needs to suit the design of your home. If you have a modern home, a contemporary landscaping scheme with plenty of clean lines and planters would work best, while a more traditional house would suit a classic landscaping scheme with a lawn and timber features.
Of course, your pool design needs to be taken into account, as this is the central feature of your backyard, and your landscaping needs to work around it. Choose a landscaping design that will complement the shape and colour of your pool for maximum impact. Lighting can also be used to great effect to make a real feature of your pool after dark.
Landscaping ideas and trends
Once you’ve considered all the important factors, you might need some inspiration for your pool area design. Here are some of the most popular pool landscaping trends for 2018, to help you create a spectacular backyard.
1. Stone flooring
Natural stone is becoming a favourite flooring material around Australian pools. Stone varieties with textured appearances, such as limestone and granite, are particularly popular, as they make more interesting tiles. They are also tough and hardwearing, so they can withstand all weather conditions and require very little maintenance.
Cobblestones are a huge trend this year, enabling you to mix and match different types of stone for a truly original look.
2. Diversity of plants
Whether you decide to include grass and soil in your design, or you choose an ultra-modern scheme with stone planters, choosing the right plants will make all the difference to the effect of your pool landscaping.
To create a vivid and original design, choose a variety of both native and Mediterranean plants, and grow them next to each other. Plants from Spain, Italy, and Greece are trending right now, and they will give you a beautiful colour display that will complement your traditional Australian favourites.
3. Outdoor rooms
If you have the space for it, you can create the ultimate outdoor living experience by bringing some of your traditional indoor rooms to the poolside! Lounges and coffee tables are becoming essential backyard accessories – but make sure to choose waterproof versions designed to withstand the weather.
For the height of entertainment convenience, you can also build an outdoor kitchen. These are rapidly growing in popularity, and involve installing food preparation and cooking facilities alongside a dining area outdoors. From a simple grill and bench seating right through to outdoor hobs, ovens, fridges, and benchtops, there’s a solution to suit everyone. Even as the host, you don’t need to miss out on any of the action by the pool!
Find out more about pool landscaping
Ultimately, your swimming pool landscaping will depend on the size and shape of your backyard and your personal tastes and lifestyle. But if you would like more information and landscaping ideas, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.