Tag Archives: Swimming pool design

Create An Inviting Pool Deck For Every Season

Time by the pool is not limited to July barbecues and lazy day lounging. With the right accessories and upkeep, your pool deck can boast year-round benefits! Here are some of our seasonal tips for maintaining an inviting pool deck all year long.

Turn Up The Heat

It’s easy to yearn for the summer heat, but there are ways to replicate the sun’s rays until it returns. Looking to entertain outdoors? Keep a basket with blankets close by for both warmth and comfort, and place heat lamps close to the seating areas to make them cozy throughout the colder months.

Speaking of heat, don’t be afraid to fire up the grill! If the weather permits, continue with the cookouts well past early fall. Be sure to check the propane tank or use dry charcoal, and to clear away any snow and debris before use. Taking a few extra precautions will pay off when you’ve created a delicious meal for friends and family to enjoy.

Swap Out Accessories

A light, breezy deck chair may not last through a harsh winter, just as a winter pool cover is not necessary for summer activities. Delegate space indoors to store outdoor items that will suffer outside their appropriate seasons. This will keep your furniture looking new and intact for years to come!

In addition, be sure to take advantage of a sturdy, walk able pool cover by setting up an attractive entertaining space. This can serve as an extension to the deck itself! Placing furniture on the surface is not advised, but a sound system or table with party essentials, such as snacks and drinks, will enhance the deck and the event in question.

Tend to Other Landscaping Needs

Staying up-to-date with the deck’s foliage guarantees a gorgeous space. Plant new perennials in the spring, and gear up for the cold by managing delicate areas with trimming and treating in time for winter. For added convenience, place ceramic pots around the deck and simply swap out their contents with seasonal flowers. The options are plentiful!

Decorate For The Seasons

Placing thoughtful decorations around the pool deck will create a festive vibe for every holiday. Spread a patterned tablecloth over an outdoor table, or cover the deck furniture with fabric shams that celebrate the season. For a simple, classic look, white light strings are a versatile staple long after the holidays are over, and create a beautiful ambiance for time spent outdoors.

Contact Blue Tree

Looking to expand your pool deck’s usage? Let our team of experts advise you on the season’s current demands for your pool deck. At Blue Tree Landscaping, we pride ourselves on our outdoor expertise for any terrain. Contact us today!

Don’t Let Heavy Snow Damage Your Pool Cover

Winter can be harsh on homes, plants, and cars alike, but what about pools? The cover of your pool can take a beating, especially with the weight of snow as a threat to its structure. To avoid damage, here are our tips for managing heavy snow on your pool cover until warmer weather arrives.

Clean Up and Maintenance

Take a few quick trips outside to brush the snow off the pool cover surface. If the weight on top can be reduced, there is less chance of long-term damage or collapse. However, take care not to clear all of the snow. Weight on the pool cover will prevent wind and debris from damaging it or pushing it down below the water’s surface. Leave about an inch behind to keep it in place.

While outside, check the chemical levels. While there is less chance of evaporation in the wintertime, adding too many chemicals can damage the cover – and the pool – if it isn’t monitored. Adjust accordingly, to make the grand reopening of your pool clean and efficient for the spring!

Use A Snow Removal Tool

Your cover pump might remove excess water, but for fresh flakes, a different tactic is needed. If a heavier cleanup is needed, try an ice scraper or an apparatus with a foam or rubber head, to be gentle to the cover itself. This investment will provide peace of mind year after year, no matter the severity of the weather.

Invest in a Cover Pump

Get a machine to do the work for you! A pool cover pump is attached with wire and removes the water both from the surface of the cover and underneath it, regulating the pool’s water levels. This is especially useful for snow; when snow seeps underneath the pool cover and melts, it can disturb the water levels and the carefully laid-out surface that is protecting the system. Cover pumps are available online and wherever pool supplies are sold.

Consider Replacing Your Cover

For both above-ground and in-ground pools, the average lifespan of a high-quality cover can stretch to ten years or more! your pool cover is a few years old or sustained some rough seasons in the past, it might be time to replace it. There is a wide range of special pool covers that are geared toward handling the tribulations of winter weather. Don’t forget the tubes and weights to hold it down!

Trust Blue Tree

We don’t just install pools, we help maintain them! Our team of experts can guide you in choosing and installing the right means to protecting your pool cover this winter. Contact us for more information today!

Show Off Amazing Landscaping with Proper Lighting

You’ve worked hard on your outdoor space, and now it’s time to show it off! Light fixtures are crucial to tying any landscaping together, for both functional and aesthetic purposes. Here are some of our tips for creating a safe, attractive space with lights in all areas.

Safety First

First and foremost, proper lighting should be a safety feature for outdoor spaces. For security reasons, choose base lighting that is motion-activated, especially for front yards or backyards with open space. If there are any aspects of the yard that require manpower, such as a grill or sound system, ensure that there is a light fixture nearby to operate those smoothly.

Most importantly, pools and hot tubs demand lighting to keep swimmers safe, especially small children. If possible, install light inside the pool itself, if the pool is in the ground. For outdoor pools, clip-on underwater lights are available at most hardware stores and are easy to install.

Light the Path

If your yard has a walkway, consider placing outdoor pathway lighting alongside the area. Individual lights placed as ‘spotlights’ will do the trick, but there are opportunities to personalize this touch. Above-ground lanterns are a pretty detail that goes one step further than traditional LED floodlights, and if the yard calls for it, tiki torches are fun and festive for landscapes that have a tropical touch.

Emphasize Details

Beyond walkways, landscaping that deserves recognition falls into several categories, including plants and decorations. Use the same lanterns and ground lights to illuminate gardens and larger clusters of plants. Fountains and statues will benefit from a couple of spotlights as well, especially while entertaining.

Accessorize

Now that the basics are taken care of, add personal touches for added effect. Tabletop lanterns and candles to highlight seating areas are easy to operate and store in the colder months and are cost-efficient to maintain. If an overhang has a sturdy foundation, hanging light fixtures are both trendy and functional, and string lights through trees and latticework on outdoor features are always in style.

While shopping for lighting, home improvement stores offer excellent selections for all types of lighting, from permanent fixtures to temporary accessories. They also provide batteries and replacement bulbs for said lighting and offer seasonal accouterments to match the seasons. Don’t rule out major retailers in other industries; sometimes, a supermarket or other lifestyle shopping outlet could have the perfect piece for accenting your landscaping!

Contact Blue Tree

Let us help you choose lighting that works. At Blue Tree, we’re involved in the landscaping process from start to finish, including installing those personal touches throughout the entire space. Contact us for questions and quotes today!

 

Make Your Dream Of Owning A Pool A Reality

June 21st was the first day of summer in 2018, and this is the time that people are jumping into backyard pools and enjoying the water! If this is the year to begin construction on a pool of your own, there are a few factors to consider before getting started. Here are our tips for planning the pool of your dreams, from digging the hole to diving in.

Create a Timeline

Installing a pool is a lengthy process that spans over several months. The bulk of the construction should take place during mild months of the year when the weather will not pose a threat to the progress. Consult your contractor about the best time frame to perform certain steps in the process, from creating the hole to laying the materials, and even decorating the surrounding area.

Consider the Cost

A pool requires year-round maintenance to keep the structure intact, as well as the water and systems involved. See what type of pool can be maximized in your space, whether it be above ground or in-ground. There are pros and cons to both, from the cost of upkeep to amount of attention required, so write out a list and figure out what works best!

Once the type of pool is decided upon, compile a list of necessities. Equipment, insurance, and surrounding enclosures such as fences and retaining walls are all amenities to take into consideration during planning. Work with a budget to make decisions on what features to choose, such as polymer versus Pebble Tec walls, or a cement versus tile deck. If every facet of a successful pool is considered before construction, there will be no surprises later on.

Choose the Shape, Size, and Design

Study the layout of your backyard. Is the area long and narrow, uniquely shaped, or sprawling over an acre or two? In addition to the shape, the area immediately surrounding it needs to be considered, for a deck or furniture to accent the pool. Take measurements and draft up a few blueprints before committing to the details.

Keep It Beautiful

When the pool is installed, keep it clean! Chemicals are essential to balancing both the water’s pH and the pool wall’s integrity, and they flush out the filtration systems as well. Skim the surface for leaves and other debris, and invest in a vacuum that will travel underwater and remove buildup on the wall surfaces.

Let Blue Tree Landscaping Help

Above all else, enjoy the process! A pool is a personal venture, and it should be exactly to your specifications when the building begins. Take your time and craft something to be proud of. At Blue Tree Landscaping, we are a part of the entire process, from planning to installation to keeping the pool pristine year-round. Contact us for in-ground pools so we can get started!

Reasons Your Outdoor Pool Needs A Fence

When a yard has an outdoor pool, a fence might seem like a great option to help add some decor to the space. However, any enclosure like a fence can serve an important functional purpose beyond just looks, and stand as one of the focal points of the pool. If your outdoor pool doesn’t have one already, here are a few reasons why it could benefit from a fence, from the obvious to the fun:

Safety

First and foremost, a fence is an excellent safety measure for a variety of household inhabitants. Smaller children will be kept safe by being blocked off from the open water if the fence is secure enough, and pets that run the risk of slipping into the pool area will be shut out as well. If the design is solid, even larger forces such as debris from storms, or flyaway cushions from the furniture surrounding the pool, will be contained and blocked as well. Ensure that the material you choose to build your fence can stand up to most circumstances, and the worry of accidents or damage will be eliminated. It’s not a wise choice to make the investment if the fence can’t keep toddlers at bay.

Keeps unwelcome visitors out

Depending on the terrain of your yard, small creatures can wander near the pool of their own volition. This is out of the pool owner’s control, of course, so to save the risk of them falling in or damaging any of the surrounding equipment or surfaces, consider a fence that reaches the ground to minimize the intrusion of unwanted animals. This way, anything that enters the pool will be at your discretion, eliminating the worry of unwanted guests or endangering the creatures in question.

Boosts backyard style

Beyond the functionality of a fence, make a statement with yours! Choose from a variety of materials and styles to match your outdoor pool’s unique look and feel, from wooden to wrought-iron and beyond. A fence also serves as a prime decorating piece for parties, when the style allows for it. String lights through the slots of a thinner fence, or tie balloons to the posts to add a festive touch to any occasion. By protecting against inclement weather, a fence around an outdoor pool will accentuate every feature that brings the yard together, and maintain its many other uses as well.

Blue Tree

Let us help install the perfect fence to suit your pool! At Blue Tree Landscaping, our team of experts has ample experience implementing proper outdoor fencing that will create purpose and style that will last for years to come. Contact us for a quote to get started!

Getting rid of old trees in your landscape

For any homeowner planning to install an in-ground swimming pool, there are plenty of tasks on the to-do list. One step that some people fail to think about is removing trees from the area. If you’re considering an in-ground pool, read on for three reasons to have an expert remove excess trees in your landscape — before they cause problems for your pool.

Free Up Space

Even the simplest in-ground pool designs require plenty of space. For example, even if you decide to go with a relatively small 10-by-10-foot pool, an experienced pool builder will still need to design an adequate concrete deck. In addition, many homeowners decide to build a patio to go along with their in-ground swimming pool. These areas enhance the guest experience. Often, creating this space requires clearing old trees, and homeowners need to find the right landscaper to do the job for them.

Prevent Debris

Most pool companies that do not specialize in landscaping don’t consider the impact of surrounding trees on your in-ground swimming pool. However, it’s important to consult a landscaper with expertise in tree removal before choosing a pool company. No one will enjoy swimming in a pool filled with sticks, leaves and other debris from surrounding trees. You, the homeowner, also won’t enjoy the constant work of cleaning this foliage from your in-ground pool. Take care of the trees in your pool landscape before they become a real problem.

Consider Lighting

Don’t forget about lighting when planning your pool design. In addition to in-ground lights within your pool, you may want to install lighting infrastructure above your pool deck. Before installing landscape lighting, make sure no trees are in a location where they may block light from reaching the pool surface. Your landscaper can also help you figure out if there are old trees that may hinder your ability to install outdoor lighting fixtures in the first place.

Contact Blue Tree

You want your family and friends to enjoy the experience of swimming in your in-ground pool. Don’t let those old trees get in the way of your ideal pool design. Contact Blue Tree Landscaping today and see how our experienced, friendly landscapers can help turn your dream of having an in ground-swimming pool into reality. Our tree removal services have pleased many customers in the Philadelphia area. Call today for a free quote.

Protect Your Pets From The Pool

Keeping our kids safe and out of harm’s way around a swimming pool seems like a given, but what about our pets? Some of our furry companions cannot swim, or prefer not to engage in water. To eliminate any worries, here are some ways to take precaution against them sneaking in for an unsupervised swim.

Fence Them Out

The natural choice for keeping pets away is installing a fence that will stop them from walking into the pool and its surrounding area. Choose a fence that will cater to the pet’s size; a wrought-iron fence works well for larger dogs, but smaller animals such as cats, turtles, and various farm animals might need a more solid means of protection. Build the posts close together or with a thick material to optimize safety.

Wire Mesh or Wood

Wrap wire encasing around any existing fence to add a layer of protection for smaller animals. The design could be as simple as chicken wire, or a sleeker design from a home improvement store. Not only will this stop small pets from getting in, but creatures such as possums, squirrels, and rabbits will have a harder time entering the pool.

If the fence has yet to be built, consider a solid wood or plastic fence to surround the pool. The height can depend on the space available, and a simple latching system will make it easy to enter and exit throughout the day. The cost might be more in the long run, but in the winter months, that stable fence will hold up against harsher weather.

Add A Retaining Wall

For backyards with a hill, animals can climb up and around a ground fence and enter the pool area. By protecting the back of the pool with a sturdy foundation, animals of any size will have a harder time infiltrating that area. An additional fence can be built on top of this wall, to further protect against pests to the yard. Retaining walls can be customized to add to the aesthetic of the yard as well. You might consider tile work or stones that will stack and create a textured, unique surface to back the pool. Make it your own!

Contact Blue Tree

Let Blue Tree Landscaping help keep your four (or two) legged friends safe this summer! We specialize in hardscaping and preventative structures that will serve as functional, beautiful additions to any pool. Our team cares about your pets and your yard in tandem: contact us for a quote on your fence pool, or your next home improvement project!

Add Some Entertainment Elements To Your Yard

It’s party time! The weather is perfect for entertaining, both indoors and outdoors. Here are a few entertainment essentials that are worth the investment:

Pool Toys

These are cheap, fun staples for any backyard. Grab a few inner tubes at your local dollar store, or upgrade to giant inflatable animals to hold more than one person. There are several options for practicality and entertainment with pool toys; if your child is learning to swim this summer, pool noodles and arm inflatables will help them learn to stay afloat. Better yet, floating basketball hoops and coolers will cater to older members of the festivities. Visit a pool supply store or shop around online to stock up.

Outdoor Television

Relax with the setting sun and watch your post-work movie outside! Televisions often offer protective coverings for weather-resistant enjoyment. They can be free-standing, mounted to a wall, or wired to an overhang or gazebo post for ultimate convenience. Add in surround sound and create a full system for an authentic theater experience.

For a makeshift experience, try this: get a projector and a white sheet. Hang the sheet on a retaining wall or fence, pop a movie into the projector, and set up chairs to face it. If a pool is present, float on inner tubes for a new take on ‘theater seats.’ Include snacks and popcorn for instant outdoor entertainment for everyone to enjoy!

Volleyball Net

One fun way to get a sweat going and enjoy the spirit of competition is incorporating sports into outdoor activities. If the yard has reasonable space for a makeshift court, invest in a net with easy setup and take down. It can be used for volleyball and badminton, among other sports, and it provides fun for sports lovers of all ages. If it has the adjustment capabilities, stretch it across a pool and play water ball!

Contact Blue Tree

Make sure the rest of your yard is up to snuff with Blue Tree Landscaping! We specialize in optimizing home space for every homeowner’s needs, from tiny back lots to expansive backyard spaces with room to play. Get advice on the best adornments for summer fun, in addition to year-round services that will keep your backyard in pristine shape for any entertainment. Contact our team to get a quote today!

Get the Pool of Your Dreams

One of the best outdoor activities in the summer is taking a dip in the pool…assuming there’s one nearby to use! Whether your current pool is in need of updating, or you’re looking to install a brand-new backyard staple, there are many factors to take into consideration when looking into the process of getting a pool in your backyard. Here’s a general overview of things to keep in mind when researching details for planning

Create a Timeline

Right now, the weather is perfect for outside activities and the installation of outdoor landscaping. Different aspects of construction cannot be rushed, such as cement drying and laying surfaces. Since the summer months are approaching, vacations will be scheduled around this time as well. Be sure to plan early to get the services you need whenever is most convenient for you.

Consider Design

This goes beyond just the shape of the pool. There are many styles to choose from, such as infinity pools and various in ground designs. Certain hardscaping features like tile work, wall finish, and the surrounding ground surface should all be decided before proceeding with installation, as there are details that can add or detract from the overall image.

Choose Fun Extra Features Beforehand

External features are easier to implement later in the pool’s production. However, water slides, underwater bar stools, fountains, and similar details need to be decided on early in the timeline, in case they change the pool’s overall shape or estimated completion date. Take any fun additions into consideration and add them to the blueprints before starting construction.

Decorate

One of the most fun experiences in pool design is creating your own unique backyard features, and there is an abundance of technology on the market right now that will help create a truly one-of-a-kind pool. Lights and accessories can add to the aesthetic and be changed frequently for occasions and events. Consider color-changing lights, surrounding seating, and hidden sound systems that will make the pool the centerpiece for entertaining and home enjoyment.

Explore your options with Blue Tree! We are part of the process every step of the way, from initial planning to installation to putting the last touches on the finished product. Our team of experts will advise you on which courses of action to take to ensure that your pool is as picturesque and perfect as can be. Consider choosing us for a swimming pool project, and do not hesitate to contact us to get started!

Signs Your Pool Might Need Some Maintenance

Signs Your Pool Might Need Some Maintenance

As the weather begins to change, your pool might start to reveal the wear and tear it sustained during the cold winter months, and even before that. Foresight on a pool’s issues can be attained by noticing certain details early on, such as topical issues and potential damages caused by the pool’s environment. Here are some signs that your pool is in need of extra attention this spring.

Damage Caused by Ice and Snow

Ice can wreak havoc on an in ground pool. The expansion of the water can infiltrate both the walls of the pool and the surrounding landscaping, causing small cracks to form. If water or other substances enter these cracks, the damage it can cause can be costly when everything melts. This is not only unappealing, but a potential hazard underfoot.

Be sure to inspect your pool regularly for imperfections, and look into snow removal for the pool and the surrounding topography in your backyard. Removing the problem before it starts will decrease the chance of your pool suffering weather-related issues in the months to come.

Cleanliness

Depending on what surrounds your pool, there are certain factors that can affect its cleanliness. Dirt, leaves, animal residue, and other forms of natural waste are common contributors to a pool’s need for constant cleanup. Even remnants from backyard furniture or pool toys can deteriorate, causing plastic to get stuck in the systems that are essential to the pool’s functions.

All of those factors, in addition to the hazards they can cause, can leave unsightly stains and scratches on outward surfaces. Take care to check the surfaces of your pool for minor damages it may sustain. Taking the proper steps to fix anything that looks questionable will keep it looking picture-perfect for much longer.

Upgrade 

Even if there are no standing issues with a pool, sometimes a backyard can just use a makeover! Updating the overall look of your pool is one of the simplest and most enjoyable ways of giving it the attention it needs. Take into account the design elements you wish to incorporate that will increase your pool’s curb appeal and up-to-date functions.

Start Maintenance Today

Taking the correct measures to ensure your pool’s health, beauty, and functionality is necessary year-round. For any inquiries about upkeep, contact Blue Tree Landscaping to get a quote on the services we offer. Our capabilities include checking chemical levels, repairing visible damages, inspecting filters and drains, and much more. Call today to make sure your pool is ready for summer!