Welcome to our thrifty pool paradise! This yard has seen a LOT of changes in the last couple of years.
We built the pergola in the spring of 2010. It was just supposed to be a concrete patio but then my husband said, “why don’t I build a pergola?” Of course I said yes! Ok, moving ahead to 2011. In the early spring, we purchased bricks off craigslist and installed two sidewalks. I also put in a couple of flower beds. This is where it gets interesting. In April 2011, I was scheduled for a hysterectomy. That’s why I put my flower beds in early because I need I’d be out of commission for a while. Right after my surgery, my husband was browsing craigslist and saw an ad where someone wanted to REMOVE their in ground pool. Yep, he bought, dug it up and re-installed it in our yard! The man is talented! He’s a jack of all trades! and this was his first time dealing with an inground pool!
This is a view from the pergola. The fence used to run right behind the pergola but it was taken down to install the pool. I can’t find any pictures of the installation. Since I was bedridden upstairs for a while, I sent Savannah to take them but I have a feeling she deleted them. She’s kinda bad about that! The yard had to be built up because it sloped to the right. To make the retaining walls, railroad timbers were used and secured with really long bolts. We already had the timbers so that saved money. We did have to purchased a LOT of dirt and a couple of loads of sand.
The only thing we replaced on the pool was a few jets and trim pieces. The original pieces were just faded from the sun and since it was new to us we wanted it to be bright and shiny! We even used the old liner! There are a few wrinkles in it but that’s to be expected when installing a used liner. We figured it would do us for a couple of years before we installed a new one. I have read and been told by quite a few people that liners cannot be re used on above and in ground pools but THIS IS NOT TRUE. Our first above ground pool was used and we never had any trouble with it. When we sold that house, we left the pool. In our current home, our second above ground pool was used and we re-used that liner as well.
As you can tell from reading my blog, we are firm believers in using what you got. We recycle a lot of things! Two very good examples are our home and the china closet. We actually tore down a 1937 house and used the old lumber in the building of our current home. You can read about our home here. In the china closet, all the cabinets were from a house that had partially burnt down. After I cleaned them good, my husband cut them to fit the space in our utility room, transforming it into a china closet. To read that post, click here. My husband has clients that change out things in their home that they are tired of or they want to upgrade and he brings them home. If we have a need for them, they get put to use! If not, they’re usually stored until we can use them. By living this way, we have a lot of things that otherwise we could not afford to have and this pool is an example of that. Sure, we had to put out some money. The pool itself was $2500, dirt and sand was probably about $800, the concrete around the pool was $700 and equipment rental was less than $500. So for about $4500, AND LOTS OF HARDWORK, we got an in ground pool!
Everything didn’t go super smooth during the installation either. There was a little problem with excavation of the actual pool because we didn’t have a diagram to go by and the one I got off the internet was wrong. Thankfully, we caught it in time and was able to make the needed changes before we were due to return the equipment. Also, after it was in, we had some trouble with leaking around the underwater light. After reading about this on the internet, it seems that this is a common problem even with professional installation. All that’s taken care of now and we are able to fully enjoy it. I will say this, in ground pools are much easier to take care of than above ground!
We did add in a few extra touches. Such as the irrigation system around the fence. It is inexpensive pvc pipe tied into a water faucet that runs around the outside perimeter of the fence. About every 8 feet, a hole was made in the fence to bring the pvc pipe to this side. Then a irrigation head was added. Once you turn the valve on, all the irrigation heads pop up and the plants get a drink of water! We purchased the pvc pipe and irrigation heads from Home Depot. I keep saying that I want someone to build me some little boxes to cover them but it’s not really high on the list right now.
That gray rock you see is an outdoor speaker. We have two that were purchased from Lowes. Just imagine floating in the pool, hearing the water as it flows down the nearby waterfall and listening to “Tiny Bubbles” or whatever island music I have on hand!
The band is playing! I got these at Lowes on clearance last year. I took a gamble last year and planted sword ferns in each corner by the palms. They have done really well. They didn’t even die down this past winter! Oh, did I mention that the palm trees were my Mother’s Day presents? Yep, I got the left in 2011 and the right one in 2012!
That’s one of them in the back corner, to the left of the tiki hut. The one to the right of the tiki was a much smaller one. We wanted the more mature trees to frame each side. All the palm trees are from Home Depot.
The banana trees are growing like crazy! Oh and they are re cycled as well! After I had my daughter, 15 years ago, I left my job to be a stay at home mom. One of my co-workers hired me to clean her house and when I brought her above ground pool (well I worked it off), she gave me a bunch of banana trees! I ended up giving them to my mom and when I needed some last year to put around the pool, I went and dug some of them up. Isn’t that crazy?!
See my totem pole? That was a splurge for me! He wasn’t on sale but I just loved him! He came from Lowes last year as well. I do like some of the cute outdoor decorations but I do know you can go overboard with it!
I LOVE hibiscus! So beautiful and colorful! The only problem with them is that if they do come back in the spring they are VERY slow to grow back up and bloom.
Another favorite in the back yard is lantana. This one gets really big and the butterflies love it! I have never had any luck with plants. It has been trial and error for me. I did take the time to fix the flower beds right and used lots of mulch so I wouldn’t have a weeding nightmare. Usually the only time it’s weeded is when I’m walking around in the early morning drinking a cup of coffee. We did get a lot of the plants last years 1/2 off at Lowes. My husband took me to town for a follow-up appointment and he had to stop there. They accidentally got a double shipment of plants and had to mark them 1/2 off that day only to try to move them out. How lucky was that!
I really regret not having the pictures to share of the process. I even went to my mom and checked her camera! The camera that we had last year broke and I knew I borrowed hers for awhile but they weren’t on it! If you have missed my posts on the tiki hut, the waterfall or the back porch tropical paradise, just click on the word and it’ll take you to the post!
August Before & After Party @ Thrifty Decor Chick
Thrifty Treasures @ Southern Hospitality
Metamorphosis Monday @ Between Naps on the Porch
Nifty Thrifty Tuesdays @ Coastal Charm
Tuesdays Treasures @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
Your Cozy Home Party @ Cozy Home Scenes
Cowgirl Up Party @ Cedar Hill Ranch
Wow Us Wednesday @ Savvy Southern Style
White Wednesday @ Faded Charm
Open House Party @ No Minimalist Here
Home @ Garden Thursday @ A Delightsome Life
Thrifty Things Thursday @ The Thrifty Groove
Treasure Hunt Thursday @ From My Front Porch to Yours
Home Sweet Home Friday @ The Charm of Home
Inspiration Friday @ The Picket Fence
Saturday Nite Special @ Funky Junk Interiors