Asked on Oct 22, 2013

Removed above ground pool and now have big circle of sand in yard

by ToolHQ
I recently took down our above ground pool and now have a 24' diameter circle of sand that is a couple inches deep in my yard. Any idea on what to do about this? We considered installing pavers of some sort and making it like a patio area- can it be removed? How? Thanks!
  38 answers
  • KMS Woodworks KMS Woodworks on Oct 22, 2013
    Do you have a big shop vac?...Raking and shoveling will also work. The problem will be where to put it. Perhaps you have a natural area off on the side of the yard where it can be dispersed. If you can get most of it up then blending in some new top soil / compost blend will allow the grass to come back. If that is the route you want to go.
  • ToolHQ ToolHQ on Oct 22, 2013
    Not sure about using a shopvac, I do have one, will give it a try
  • Why not turn this area into a gathering spot? How about a fire pit in the middle, add a rock border around it and some'll be like a bon-fire at the beach!
  • Sherri Brown Sherri Brown on Oct 22, 2013
    I did the firepit idea and love it.
  • ToolHQ ToolHQ on Oct 22, 2013
    That is what we are thinking!
  • D.I.Yankowski D.I.Yankowski on Oct 22, 2013
    Is there already some kind of weed barrier between the ground and the sand? If not, weeds may eventually work their way between whatever bricks or pavers you put down. If you're not worried about that, install a circle of edging inside the perimeter of the existing sand, to keep it from spreading out. Clean up all the sand outside the edging and add it back to the circle. It's probably not play sand, so it might not be a good material to leave exposed and use like a beachy sandbox, so level it out, tamp it down and lay bricks or pavers. Tamp those down and spread more sand over them and sweep it evenly into all the gaps between them. If you want a fire pit too, that's pretty simple. Here are some step by step instructions...
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Oct 23, 2013
    Seems like a natural spot for a fire pit.
  • ToolHQ ToolHQ on Oct 23, 2013
    I did not even think of that! In NC we have red clay, so we basically took the grass up and it was just clay when we put the sand down. But I bet weeds would indeed come up! Thanks!
  • Diane Woods Diane Woods on Oct 23, 2013
    Is it possible to put sod down on top of it and blend it out to the grass you already have with dirt/seed?
  • Water feature, patio and fire pit
  • Donna Donna on Oct 23, 2013
    I had the same thing at a home I used to have. We mad flower beds randomly and at the back we put a swing. the paths between we graveled. It was lovely! Wish I still had pictures, but, we lost all pics in Hurricane Ike.
  • Molly H Molly H on Oct 24, 2013
    iam thinking,build a parago ,i think thats how you spell it,anyway,get some sqaure concrete pavers,,why not paint them to ur likeing,make it ur own style,be creative w/the pavers,build ur parago on each end,get some long flower boxes for each end ,plant some vine plants,just be creative,make it into a nice relaxing reading area,,maybe get white wicker set and get some throw pillowes ,whatever u want,lol..thats how i would do mine if i had one,
  • Pajunka Pajunka on Oct 24, 2013
    I would just pretend that aliens had landed there and get your money's worth by getting small children to sell postcards of it by the side of the road.
  • ToolHQ ToolHQ on Oct 24, 2013
    I am not sure, because the sand is a couple inches deep and compacted from the pool sitting on it! That was my question, if it has to be completely removed or do I leave it and make a fire pit! :)
  • Pat Pat on Oct 24, 2013
    I had the same problem a few years ago in Maryland. The sand was on top of red clay. I wanted another flower garden with a water feature in the middle. We shoveled some of the sand off then put down landscaping bricks( the kind that allow you to form a circle). We used red and gray colored bricks 4 high with the topper bricks which are much thinner. We then filled it with leaf-grow(a combination of leaf mulch and landscaping soil which is much cheaper). We created a wonder garden with a little water fountain(removable in winter) and enjoyed until 2 years ago when we moved.
  • Linda Linda on Oct 24, 2013
    A large tree fell on the pool during last year. I took out the pool and left the liner. I spread out the liner and cut a large circle to cover all the sand. I cut away the extra liner. I used red bricks that I had and circled the outside with them. I went completely around the circle three times and ran out of bricks. I bought 8 bags of black mulch and filled in the remaining circle. I put in in large stone fountain in the center. I removed a few bricks from the circle and put soil in them and planted a creeping perennial plant that has many little blue flowers all summer. I also cut a few holes in the circle and added soil and planted tulips. I added a cement bench at the edge of the circle. I call this my memory garden. It's quiet and the sound of the water fountain draws birds,dragon fly and even an occasional wild turkey. I enjoy this area very much, even with out the pool!
  • Therese Ryan-Haas Therese Ryan-Haas on Oct 24, 2013
    I ordered a yard of compost and turned the soil over. made a awesome garden.
  • AnnMarie Goodlad AnnMarie Goodlad on Oct 24, 2013
    I made mine into a badminton play area
  • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Oct 24, 2013
    @ToolHQ We didn't have a pool removed but did have an over sized sand box we made for the kids. Had to ponder what to do when they were too big to play in it anymore. I decided to dig in a pond and plant sand loving plants like Yucca (very pretty when in bloom). Have added to it over the years. Now have a black lace plant, japenese tree, siberian iris and coreopsis. It is easy to maintain and a pleasant area to sit and watch the fish in the summer. Do update us on what you do. Thanks for posting :)
  • Mary Thorne Mary Thorne on Oct 24, 2013
    We had the same issue. We lowered the pool deck to ground level and installed a fire pit. Still more work to be done, but you get the idea.
  • Sandra Parrill Sandra Parrill on Oct 24, 2013
    Looks like a wonderful opportunity to put in a labyrinth.
  • Cynthia H Cynthia H on Oct 24, 2013
    We scraped up the sand, put down some topsoil and planted flowers, added some solar lights and a bird feeder. Not terribly original, but, very pretty. We love sitting on the patio and watching the songbirds. My daughter is a geologist and over the years has added interesting rocks and reclaimed bricks from demolitions of meaningful buildings (a school our other daughters attended, the church all our children attended) as a border.
  • Buster Evans Buster Evans on Oct 25, 2013
    Mary Thorne's idea is Beautiful, as well as most the other ideas.. Depending on how close to the house the area is that (or a combination of these ideas) would create a beautiful place to relax and reflect. There are infinite possibilities here!
  • ToolHQ ToolHQ on Oct 25, 2013
    thanks for all the ideas! I would rather leave the sand so will probably think about making it a permanent relaxation area- but now I am wondering about weeds popping through! :)
  • Therese Ryan-Haas Therese Ryan-Haas on Oct 25, 2013
    @ToolHQ Yes I left the sand. I just turned over the compacted soil, compost and sand with a pitchfork. Then a garden weasel to mix it all up.Made the perfect garden soil.You can do the same if you want to plant a garden or grass. But for a patio, I would put down more sand, or fine gravel. If your pool was put in like mine it would have a slight slope to the middle. When it rains it will run to the middle and pool there. The area hasn't seen rain or sun in some time so no weeds. Only weeds you will get are whatever the wind or compost bring. And pulling or weed killer will take care of them. I hear straight vinegar will even work.
  • Mary Thorne Mary Thorne on May 22, 2014
    My husband did it, basically putting jacks under it and cutting the supports down to where he wanted them. Then he inserted them into deck supports and added the steps. He did it all by himself - amazing guy!
  • Andra Sabina Valeanu Andra Sabina Valeanu on Aug 08, 2014
    Hey everyone. I stumble across this conversation and you're suggestions are great. We have a above ground pool ( the INTEX type) that we will be taking out in Autumn. My problem is I can't find any suggestions about what to do with the space until next Summer when it will be put back on. All the suggestions above are great if you want to take it out for good. Do you have any ideas for using the space during cold season? Thanks a lot :)
    • Gail Salminen Gail Salminen on Aug 22, 2014
      @Andra Sabina Valeanu since they recommend a sandy soil for these product, perhaps you could consider a free standing firepit and place some chairs around it - fire torches at the edges. In the spring you can remove the free standing fire pit and replace the pool - torches around the pool would still be cool for atmosphere.
  • Andra Sabina Valeanu Andra Sabina Valeanu on Aug 25, 2014
    Thank you very much for the tip :)
  • John John on Sep 02, 2014
    18ft pool came down yesterday, sand is still there , bringing in 4 yards of top soil, going right on top of the sand. then planting grass , i just want my yard back with green grass.just leave the sand there it should not be a problem.
    • Janice c Janice c on Mar 16, 2015
      @John has the grass grown in yet? was 4 yards enough? that is what I was thinking since I have the same issue. thank you.
  • White Oak Studio Designs White Oak Studio Designs on Feb 27, 2015
    I'd make a bird bed garden filled with shrubs with edible fruits, native plants and colorful perennials as well as bird feeders. Good for the wildlife and enjoyable for you!
  • Cynthia H Cynthia H on Jul 14, 2015
    We dug out and gave away buckets of sand to neighbors who wanted it for various projects. We then had topsoil delivered, spread it out over the remaining sand and started planting bulbs and such. We have a lovely little garden next to our patio now, and we have bird feeders and flowering plants. It's a joy, watching the birds and butterflies while sitting out.
  • Judy Judy on Mar 31, 2017

    Can you leave the walls of the pool up except for a small area so the fire pit area would have walls. Maybe put Wood up around the walls so it doesn't look so much like a pool?

  • Jewels Jewels on Jun 05, 2017

    I would love to do a firepit/sitting area, but the run off from my neighbor's yard behind me just makes it a swamp with heavy rain. the gravel is almost removed and there is the sand left. Can this just be covered with dirt or do I need to get it all removed before I fill it in with dirt?

  • Patti Patti on Aug 27, 2018

    Whats the best way to remove the sand from where a pool used to be?

  • Shelah Dieter Shelah Dieter on Jun 16, 2023

    I'm hoping to turn my area into a Japanese sand garden.

  • Mogie Mogie on Jun 16, 2023

    Perfect place for a fire pit. Just put the pit in the middle surrounded by chairs and a table or two.

  • Mogie Mogie on Jul 01, 2023

    Good place for a bbq or smoker although you might want some sort of cover for those items.

  • Turn it into a firepit. Here's a link with ideas for you: