Asked on Jun 07, 2013

Mulch in pool HELP!

Linda Dann
by Linda Dann
I do animal rescue- they kick the mulch into the pool- I did not design all this bedding around the pool- but bought the house and then added the plantings. We have tried to open the pool for over a month- and still cannot get all the mulch out of the pipes, etc- any ideas that will not be too costly? I looked at rubber mulch- a thousand dollars- and I think they'd kick that in as well!
  41 answers
  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) on Jun 07, 2013
    I would replace the mulch with some stone similar to what is at the base of the pole in the 2nd picture. It looks big enough that the dogs won't be as likely to try to chew on it or carry it around.
  • Betty Mckinney Betty Mckinney on Jun 07, 2013
    I have dogs also. The large rocks work great(I like the red creek rock we have). Our Rotties drop one in the pool from time to time, no big deal. I also use large pots for plantings. Which keeps me off my knees.
  • Becky P Becky P on Jun 07, 2013
    just don't use pea gravel! (speaking from experience, here.....never understood how it got in the above ground pool)
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 07, 2013
    Okay- so I'm going to try and get some of those bigger rocks- and I ordered some 'rubber mulch bedding stuff' Will let you know if that works, thanks!
  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) on Jun 07, 2013
    good luck! Let us know how it turns out. I am very curious to know your thoughts on the rubber mulch stuff. Was it very expensive?
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 07, 2013
    well, the stuff that they use for playgrounds is very expensive- it's loose like regular mulch- but I bought one of those rolls- most reviews good- some not so- I'll surely post results.
  • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Jun 07, 2013
    @Linda Dann keeping mulch where you want it with a dog around is always a problem, but more so beside a pool, any ground cover that is easily moved will still get into the pool, be it other types of mulch or pea gravel. Your gardens are beautiful by the way. Perhaps you need something a little taller to border the garden. An effective but inexpensive way to do this would be to take plumbers vinyl pipe of varying widths. Cut them with at varying lengths so that thery are at least 6 inches height after digging them into the ground. You could even spray paint them to unify the colours. Once in place you can fill them with dirt and plant them with various plants. Some succulents are perrenial and will actually hang over the sides making for a soft edging in green. Do let us know what you decide. Thanks for posting.
  • Vickie Foss Vickie Foss on Jun 08, 2013
    I invested in rubber mulch. Bad Idea! It stinks like burning rubber in the hot sun, and it has cable wires in it. OUCH! Took me several years to get it all out of my yard.
  • Barbara Passaro Barbara Passaro on Jun 08, 2013
    I think river stone around the pool would be stays in place and the round edges are gentle on the feet. You can have it delivered by the yard which turns out cheaper than buying bags and it's easy care...Good Luck!
  • The issue is that most mulch floats. What is around a pool? Water. The splashing and rain floats the stuff into the pool. Rubber mulch is not that much better. If you still want the mulch covering you need to purchase cedar mulch that is more like strings then chips. The material tends to become more of a mat and is not as easily disturbed when it rains heavy so it does not float away nearly as fast. Check with larger landscape companies in the area, they will be able to get this for you. I doubt you will find it in your local home center. I would also suggest if your staying with mulch is to purchase a commercial grade rubber edge. This edging material has a round top about a 1/2" round and it is around six inches where it sticks into the ground. Leave it a bit more proud of the surface so any mulch that does float will be caught by the edging. It is pretty hard material but soft enough should a kid or adult acting like a kid step on it so not to hurt their foot. Personally I like the larger river rock look. These are rounded stones that are soft on the foot and will not move once properly placed.
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    Rubber mulch isn't any good anyway (tried it & had to replace it, wait until leaves fall on it :-/ You want to take it all out (or keep the doggies off of what ya got?). Those are 2 different options. To keep them off it, spray it with something like "dog no" (or google how to keep dogs out of the garden home made spray). If you want to replace ,remember stones get hot & can kill the plants.... a roll out boarder won't help? Or I'll put 2 links:
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013 all kinds of stone boarders, you just stack them higher until dumb doggie doesn't go in there. Dogs are stubborn (why not get CATS?).
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013 what about a flower boarder? Doggies will just step on those though....
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    ^ get cats instead. They are smarter than dogs.
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    relooked at pictures. Doggies don't always do all this, birds kick it up to get to the worms, frogs do this and deer mess mine all up (at night). You need to power wash your fence, also, I think I'd do away with the flower beds & concentrate on your grass, make it more lush (get those weeds out & cut it). Then use maybe large pots (very large pots) to add accent flowers. Also, mid size pots, this way the pool boy can move them around to your liking using the dolly while you drink tea & watch. You just point. Yes, I believe this is exactly what I'd do.
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    Below are current pool boys....
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    Who they were...
  • Virginia Virginia on Jun 08, 2013
    Yes, I think, thinking about it, your money would be better spent on "pool boys" not mulch.
  • Judy Judy on Jun 08, 2013
    How about get rid of the mulch entirely & plant some sort of ground cover. You'd have to protect it from the critters until it's well rooted but once it's established they won't be kicking it into the pool. Either that or put in pavers.
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 08, 2013
    I have tried to put some sedum in- but yeah takes a while! At this point- I needed a 'quick fix' with a tight budget- so here's what I tried just a few minutes ago- 2 foot cedar wired slats- with bird netting (and if that doesn't work I'll get something sturdier) stapled on the back- my dogs- except for one- are usually smaller-- it's the little terriers that do the most digging and kicking. Photos up next!
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 08, 2013
    I wish you could see my "pool boy!"
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 08, 2013
    As for cats, Virginia- got 3 of them too!
  • Helen J Crockett Helen J Crockett on Jun 08, 2013
    I would use larger white rock about 4 to 5 inches from edge . the rubber can get clog your filter and cost you a lot of money to have cleaned . or put 2ft high fence so he wont go in the mulch
  • MandaV MandaV on Jun 08, 2013
    Why don't you just get a little 12 inch high border to place around the edge of the mulch? something decorative but high enough that it'll stop mulch from passing over, or a few layers of rounded landscaping pavers :)
  • Lawn Pro Lawn Pro on Jun 08, 2013
    Pea gravel,or stone so they can't paw it out
  • Ingrid Caballero Ingrid Caballero on Jun 08, 2013
    I would place commerical Landscape fabric,over the mulch add River Rock.They all come in different sizes. Good Luck!!!
  • Sandra Whittier Sandra Whittier on Jun 08, 2013
    Monkey grass and cats. You don't walk them and have a yard full of poop. Does poop float?
  • Carolyn Staat Carolyn Staat on Jun 09, 2013
    I think your best bet is to take out the plants and take out some of the soil to make it lower that the pool then replace the plants. You won't get as much in the pool because it can't go up hill.
  • Deborah Lafountaine Deborah Lafountaine on Jun 09, 2013
    why not trim the edge of your flower bed with brick pavers and the space between the pavers and pool put some rock with concrete squares turned on the diagonal to walk on?
  • LeAnn Shultz LeAnn Shultz on Jun 09, 2013
    I'd take the flowerbed edge back towards the fence about a foot and buy concrete border rock to create a nice looking faux "retaining" wall and then place the rock on the ground in front of it. Just a thought.
  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Jun 09, 2013
    Oh my! Looks like you have a lot of this stuff! If you include your animals in your lifestyle, you might want to to think about cutting back on the amount of landscaping you have. I don't think dogs like pine straw much. It would be simple to get a couple of bails, rake back the mulch and put it out in the area nearest the poor an see what happens. If they do not disturb it, then you have an inexpensive solution!
  • Mikell Paulson Mikell Paulson on Jun 09, 2013
    We have a bit more cement around our pool, and then rock. We keep all our plants in pots that are near the pool! We also have 1 small dog that know where he is allowed to pee and poop!
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 09, 2013
    Well, that is definitely where I'm headed- but unfortunately- I inherited this and that will have to be a longer- term project- I will definitely go lightly on the mulch however. My dogs are foster and stay around a month or so- but I'm not so hot at training anyway.
  • Janet Janet on Jun 09, 2013
    I would be afraid to have an accessible pool to animals. Is that a legal way to enclose a pool? Looks like the outer fence is going to need replacing soon. Your yard is high maintenance. I'd replace plantings with a lot of low or no maintenance materials and make a kennel run out of chain link for the dogs if you want to foster long term. Your space is large, you need time to get it where you want it to be.
  • Linda Dann Linda Dann on Jun 09, 2013
    Janet- yes it's legal- the animals are not out there alone- maybe a minute or so- I'll run inside-it was raining heavily day of photo- the fence is in pretty good shape-. there is an enclosed side yard as well- but they hate it- I have to push them out the door and they bark to get back in! As of now- we're planning on narrowing the beds but not this year.
  • Sheila E Sheila E on Jun 09, 2013
    Well if you don't want to reverse the slope, or put edge pavers down, then the next best option is to buy a pool cover and reel. Also, look into a Kreepy Krauly, and either the Pentair or Hayward leaf trap canister to keep the stuff out of your filter/system.
  • Linda Wingert-Turiak Linda Wingert-Turiak on Jun 10, 2013
    Like other people said, I would replace the mulch with river rock. In the long run it's less expensive too because you don't have to replace it so often.
  • Lisa C Lisa C on Jun 10, 2013
    Edging maybe the cheaper little fence type while you work on dog training and maybe there is a spray that will keep them off? is the least expensive way to go>
  • Cynthia Cynthia on Jun 20, 2013
    I would replace it all with stone. Easier to wash down if animals pooh in your beds. We use it at a vet hospital and it was great!
  • Provaeagle Provaeagle on Oct 07, 2015
    Pool enclosures leave your problem.