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Old 06-30-2015, 05:48 PM
Location: Grapevine, Texas
9,513 posts, read 19,529,556 times
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I bet most cities' zoning laws would prohibit that in a typical residential yard. You'd also likely end up with a yard full of snakes... Cottonmouths love ponds!
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Old 07-01-2015, 11:32 AM
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My little architect brother has installed several over the years. But none so far as I recall close to DFW. Plus my wife got the natural pool bug when we built our last pool in 2011. So I studied up quite a bit.

Real Natural Pools
The pools are absolutely beautiful.
The no chemical thing is kind of cool.
The required aquatic plants are awesome.
When right the water is beautiful.

There are 2 main types of natural pools. With one type roughly half the surface area is devoted to the pool proper and roughly half is devoted to the shallow cleaning/plant/sun sanitizing area. The other type uses what is more or less a giant french drain/gravel filter but the pool looks traditional more or less.

The problem is both methods require a lot more space than a traditional pool plus extra digging to yield the same swimming area. That's a killer in DFW with so many smallish back yards.

When they go bad the go really bad very quickly and you can't shock the pool back in shape. Natural pools use a pump and if the pump dies or the power goes off or something dies in the pool (virtually every one with a pool has had one or more dog, cat, rat, mouse, rabbit etc. die in their pool).

With some natural pool surfaces there is no good way to deal with mustard or black algae. DFW has both.

Notice in virtually very picture of natural pools the water looks green............that's green algae.

This one is the deal killer for me.....real natural pools have much higher bacteria counts than chlorine based pools.


Hybrids. IMO a hybrid natural pool is the only possible way to go the natural pool direction around here.

These things use phosphate killing devices, algae more or less eats phosphates, plus ozone generators and anti-microbial UV lights to kill bacteria. But you'd still need a big back yard.


I know two people who have these things.

1. One guy lives in Zug Switzerland so his does not really count as the avg. temp there is at least 15F cooler.

2. One of my mom's friends lives in The Hill Country. This lady's "natural" pool has a shallow plant area roughly 3x the size of the swimming area, 3 gravel filters, 3-phosphate killers, 3 ozone machines, 3 UV lights and 3 pumps. Two of the pumps - pump water through giant sand filters like many traditional pools. Her pool is absolutely fabulous but I'd bet it cost $300K probably more. She also has a guy come over almost every day to maintain the thing.


All in all I'd pass.

ETA - I totally forgot another negative with most natural pools...........due to the greatly increased surface area evaporation is much more of an issue.........2x the pool surface area 2x the evaporation etc.

Last edited by EDS_; 07-01-2015 at 12:41 PM..
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Old 07-02-2015, 06:22 AM
216 posts, read 188,620 times
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Originally Posted by ChristieP View Post
I bet most cities' zoning laws would prohibit that in a typical residential yard. You'd also likely end up with a yard full of snakes... Cottonmouths love ponds!
This right here! I've been looking at some houses with ponds close to the house and I had to pass on them due to the propensity of cottonmouths/water moccasins they would attract.
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