Setting up a pool in the garden – tips on location and subsoil

If you want to set up a pool in the garden, you have to make sure that the ground is level. My advisor explains why this is so important.

Set up pool in garden
© Maksim Kostenko –

Temperatures of well over 30 degrees are not the rule in the United States, but can make us sweat a lot. As June 2019 showed, climatic conditions are also possible here, as we actually only know them from the Mediterranean region.

Who has a garden, or an accordingly large property, plays therefore sooner or later with the thought of setting up a pool. But before the bathing fun can begin, some considerations are necessary. I can tell you from my own experience that hasty action is out of place here, because once the pool has been set up, it cannot be changed at all or only with a lot of effort.

So that you do not have to be annoyed afterwards, because the location was the wrong one, or the pool size or -form nevertheless not suitable, I decided to this councellor and will save you with my Tipps (hopefully) negative experiences.

The right location

First of all, I would like to make it clear that my tips refer to setting up inflatable family pools (Quick up) or the increasingly popular frame pools (pool with a fixed frame). If you want to build your own pool, you have to consider more and different criteria.

To find the right location for the garden pool, you should answer these 5 questions:

  1. What is the maximum size of my pool that it can fit in the garden?
  2. Do I want a sunny or shady location?
  3. The more sun your pool gets, the faster the water heats up.

  4. Does the pool damage my plants and shrubs in the area?
  5. Is the water connection close enough and/or is the garden hose long enough?
  6. Can the pool be placed on a paved or tiled surface?

The latter protects the lawn, because whoever positions his pool on the green area must be aware that the lawn underneath takes damage.

➔ Privacy protection for the pool

Pool privacy screen
Protection from prying eyes – © Chris Tefme –

Your privacy is sacred to you? Then it is important to protect the pool from prying eyes. In the best case, your new bathing paradise behind an opaque hedge, the problem is almost solved. If this is not the case, you should take care of a suitable privacy screen, because between us, not every neighbour is keen on watching you splash around.

For the future, planting a hedge might be an option. Here I can recommend the Glanzmispel. The evergreen shrub is fast-growing, but also has the disadvantage that it must be cut at least every two years.

If you don’t want to or can’t wait until the hedge has grown high enough, you can use the “non-natural variant”. This refers to privacy screen elements made of wickerwork or wood, which are really available in all sizes and shapes and which can also be quickly assembled. But also a plastic privacy fence is optically very appealing and above all practical, because the material offers the advantage that it is more durable and therefore saves you the annual wood care.

The perfect base

The location and privacy protection have been clarified, now the underground for the pool is ready. This should be as horizontal as possible, as every centimetre of gradient affects the water level of your pool. It is best to consider this point when choosing the location in your garden.

➔ Pool Underground Straightening

Pool underground straightened
© Tina Hankins –

Only very few people have a completely flat surface already. Therefore my advice: Straighten the underground!

  • Possibility 1
    They fill holes and unevenness with sifted gravel or garden soil.
  • Option 2
    They completely remove the top layer of soil or turf – use a level or spirit level.

The “new” surface for your pool must be free of branches or stones. Even the smallest stone can become “dangerous” to your pool and make a hole in the pool wall or floor.

If you want the pool to be on the same spot every year, it is worth paving or tiling this area.

➔ Lay protective layer under the pool

Pool floor fleece
Fleece protects the bottom of the pool – ©

If the surface is level and smooth, lay out a protective tarpaulin or use a floor fleece. This prevents weeds from spreading under the pool and protects the material on the ground against any pressure points that could permanently damage the plastic.

Setting up a pool – when is the right time?

There is no such thing, because everyone has different preferences! It goes without saying that a pool in the garden is not set up in the winter months. May can be regarded as a small guide value if weather conditions permit. It is best to wait for the ice saints, after which there should be no more frost.

Don Burke

I am Don Burke, one of the authors at My Garden Guide.  I am a horticulturist that cultivates, grows, and cares for plants, ranging from shrubs and fruits to flowers. I do it in my own garden and in my nursery. I show you how to take care of your garden and how to perform garden landscaping in an easy way, step by step.I am originally from Sydney and I wrote in local magazines. Later on, I have decided, more than two decades ago, to create my own blog. My area of specialization is related to orchid care, succulent care, and the study of the substrate and the soil. Therefore, you will see many articles dedicated to these disciplines. I also provide advice about how to improve the landscape design of your garden.

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