Landscape Design for a Backyard Pool

Daydreaming of a vacation with a beautiful backyard pool – or perhaps your contemplating a cocktail pool for your future yard makeover! Small pool designs and large elaborate pools have risen in popularity the past few years. No matter the size of your backyard, there are many great options to cool off in the summer months. 

Below we’ve highlighted some of Tilly’s favorite pool landcape design ideas for some inspiration. But first, let us break down some of the newer pool ‘lingo’ you may not be familar with.

Pools for Small Yards

Looking for some small pool ideas? There are many different types to consider these days:

Plunge pool

A small pool that is deep enough to “plunge” into. Sometimes it doesn’t matter the size of your yard, a small plunge pool is the perfect fit for your vision and needs, like this Tilly client.

Container pools

A modular pool made from a shipping container. A container pool, stock tank pool, or above ground plunge pool can look just as sophisticated as an in-ground pool with the right landscaping concepts. 

Spool & Cocktail Pools

These are generally less than 400 square feet. They are essentially a small swimming pool and a spa or hot tub combined into one. Small pools for small yards can be perfectly incorporated into a space with the right landscape design features and materials.

Pool Ideas by Style

No matter what type of pool you are considering, here are some things you should consider:

Placement of a Pool in Your Backyard

Where is the best place to build the pool in your yard, how will it impact views, open space, and functionality of your yard.  For example, if you put in a full size pool – will you lose all your grass and are you okay with that? If you put in a stock tank pool, have you priced out the cost to landscape so it is seamlessly incorporated into your space?

Also consider the sun and shade in your backyard. Which areas of the pool will get the most light during the prime hours of the day? Is there a large shade tree in your backyard that you would have to cut down for a pool? Or will the shade tree hang over the pool, making maintenance a full time job when the tree loses its leaves. 

Budget. How much does a pool cost? 

Whether you are looking for modern small pool ideas, cocktail pool ideas or in ground pool ideas – you’ll need to establish a budget ahead of time. Budget will have a significant impact on the type of pool and size of pool you select.

There are also many different materials and many different types. Everything you select will have its own type of maintenance. You will also need to add in costs for landscape design around your pool. And of course there is pool maintenance to factor into your costs.  

Local Zoning Codes for a Pool

This is highly variable depending on where you live, but it’s important to know what you’re allowed to do within your space according to the building regulations. There may be set back rules about how close to your property line a pool can be, rules about nearby wetlands, and more. You will be able to find this information on your town’s website.

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  1. These are beautiful.
    What is the difference between a plunge pool and a hot tub? Both in terms of what they do and what cost for each.

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