Ice pops, gelato and splashing about in an inflatable pool are all fun ways of cooling down when the weather gets a little toasty. But the latter could destroy your turf, according to one garden specialist.
And don't blame it all on the kids (or your pet), because your lawn is likely looking less-than-lush after using your hot tub. As well as kiddie pools, Jacuzzis can kill your plot in pretty much the same way.
So keep off the grass and relocate your paddling pool, fun slides and sprinkler mats some place else with this advice from the garden pros.
1. Periodically place your pool in a different position
Just like us, grass can get tan lines (and recede), so it's important that you keep your lawn in check, and give it some space to breathe for a verdant aesthetic. If you remember from your biology class at high school, plants need sunshine and oxygen to photosynthesize, so by keeping your pool in the same place – you're practically suffocating it.
'Leaving your inflatable pool in one spot for long amounts of time will block the grass and soil underneath from being exposed to important sunlight and air, which can cause it to dry out and eventually die,' says Sean Lade, gardening expert and director of Easy Garden Irrigation.
'Move the paddling pool to a different spot each day to avoid this. For small gardens, this may be difficult, so if you don't want to risk damaging your grass, empty the water daily and move the pool off the grass.'
2. Don't empty the water onto the grass
Though you might think you're doing your lawn a favor, tipping your pool water onto your green could put it at risk of overwatering or waterlogging.
But, just from splashing about, your kids will act as the best gardening hoses, hydrating your plot with ample amounts of H₂O. However, if you want to do your part to save water, consider taking a watering can, bucket or jug and using the contents of your pool to water the rest of your garden.
3. Avoid putting it on the grass in the first place!
The best place to pop your splash paraphernalia? It's the perfect patio idea says Lade. That way your kids (furry or not) can enjoy cooling off in summer, without undoing the all-year-round efforts you've taken to tend to your backyard.