12 Worst Trees To Plant Near a Swimming Pool

Most people think all trees are created equal when planting them near a swimming pool. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth! Different trees have different root systems and growth habits that make them more or less suitable to plant near a swimming pool.

Trees with an aggressive root system like Willows & Cottonwood can wreak havoc on swimming pools and pool decks, often causing cracks and lifting tiles. You may want to avoid these trees if you have a small backyard. 

The rest of the article will brief you on other trees to avoid planting near your swimming pool, so you can make a more informed decision on what to grow in your backyard. Read on to find out which trees not to plant near your pool!

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1. Willow Tree

Willow trees are one of the worst choices you can make when selecting a tree for planting near your pool. While their drooping branches and long leaves can provide much-needed shade on a hot summer day, they also drop many leaves and debris into the pool.

Their extensive root systems can cause problems with your pool’s plumbing. For these reasons, it’s best to avoid planting willow trees near your swimming pool.

2. Mulberry Trees

Their dense foliage is notorious for dropping large numbers of leaves, which can quickly clog a pool’s filtration system. In addition, mulberry tree roots tend to grow close to the surface, making them susceptible to damage from lawn mowers and other lawn care equipment.

The roots of a mature mulberry tree can extend too much from the trunk, making them a nuisance to deal with. For these reasons, it is generally best to avoid planting mulberry trees near a swimming pool.

3. Pine Trees 

You might be tempted to plant pine trees by your swimming pool because of their gorgeous smell and elegant look, though it may not be the best idea. In fact, there are a few reasons why they’re one of the worst trees to plant near your pool.

  • For starters, pine trees shed needles constantly, which can not only be a pain to clean up but can also be dangerous if someone accidentally steps on one.
  • Pine needles are also very acidic, which will affect your pool water over time. Thus, you’ll have to clean your pool more frequently when pine trees are nearby.
  • And, finally, pine trees are notorious for dropping sap, which can dirty your surrounding pool area and be difficult to clean.

So, while pine trees might seem tempting, it’s best to steer clear if you want to keep your swimming area looking its best.

4. Eucalyptus Tree

Eucalyptus trees have high water content and are very drought-tolerant. However, their roots can grow up to 130 feet (39.6 m) underground and invade sewer lines and pool plumbing. In addition, eucalyptus trees are messy, dropping leaves, sticks, and seeds into the pool.

5. Silver Maples

Silver maples have aggressive root systems that can damage underground utilities, pool plumbing, and concrete. In addition, silver maples are messy, dropping leaves, sticks, and seeds into the pool.

6. Palm Trees

If you’re looking for shade near your pool, consider planting a different type of tree instead of a palm tree. Palm trees have long, fibrous roots that can grow over 50 feet (15.24 m) from the trunk! This can pose a serious hazard and damage the pool deck and plumbing.

7. Cottonwood Trees

Cottonwood trees are messy, as they drop many leaves and twigs. The roots can also damage pool walls and pipes.

In addition, cottonwoods are fast-growing trees, so they will quickly outgrow their space and crowd out other plants. If you’re looking for a tree to plant, consider a more low-maintenance option.

8. Birch Trees

Birch trees have shallow roots that can easily damage pool walls and floors. If you must plant a birch tree near your pool, choose a variety that is less likely to drop its leaves. You should also consider planting it in a pot to prevent its roots from damaging your pool.

9. Oak Trees

There are a few reasons why oak trees are some of the worst trees to plant near a swimming pool.

  • For one, they have extensive deep roots that can damage pool walls and underground plumbing.
  • They also drop many leaves, acorns, and branches, creating a mess in and around the pool.
  • In addition, oak trees are very water-hungry, and their roots can compete with the pool for water, causing the pool to dry out.
  • Finally, oak trees are susceptible to various pests and diseases, which can spread to other plants in the landscape.

While they may be beautiful trees, it’s best to avoid planting them near a swimming pool.

10. Maple Trees

Many people love the look of a big, shady maple tree in their yard. However, if you have a swimming pool, this is one tree you should avoid planting. Maple trees are notorious for dropping their leaves, and they can quickly turn your pool into a leafy mess.

In addition, their roots can grow aggressively, lifting paving stones and cracking concrete. If you’re set on having a maple tree in your yard, do not plant near a swimming pool. Otherwise, you’ll spend more time cleaning up leaves than enjoying your swimming pool.

11. Elm Trees

Their roots spread wide and shallow, making them extremely intrusive. They also produce a lot of pollen and leaves, which can quickly clog filters and make the pool area messy.

In addition, elm trees are susceptible to diseases like Dutch elm disease, which can kill the tree and leave behind unsightly deadwood. For these reasons, it is best to avoid planting elm trees near a swimming pool.

12. Fruit Trees

Fruit trees often host various insects, including bees, wasps, and ants. In addition, their leaves and fruits can drop into the pool, creating a breeding ground for bacteria. While fruit trees may add a touch of elegance to your yard, they are not great to plant near a swimming pool.

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