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Hot Tub Landscaping Ideas to Liven Up Your Yard


A quickly-placed hot tub with no idea towards landscaping or design can stick out like a sore thumb. With a bit of attention to detail, it’s possible to give your hot tub a place to belong without taking away from the rest of your outdoor space. 

Here are a few hot tub landscaping ideas.  

Landscape architect designs backyard plan with Pool for luxury villa.

Add Life with Plants

A great way to add a literal breath of fresh air to your hot tub landscaping on a budget is by including plants near or around your hot tub. Even if you don’t have a green thumb, you can always pick plants native to the Washington area. 

Native flowers like a pink monkeyflower (Erythranthe lewisii) or arrowleaf balsamroot (Balsamorhiza sagittata) can bring a bright, showy, and sweetly fragrant aroma to your hot tub throughout the spring and summer. Because these plants are native to the area, they don’t require as much upkeep and can happily survive through the year with the water and sun. 

If you’re looking for a plant that provides a bit more coverage while still looking great, try planting a red-flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum). A currant plant brings a pop of fresh color year-round and requires almost no special attention. 

It will have small patches of vibrant red or pink flowers in spring and summer, and in fall and winter, it will hold onto its seasonally colorful leaves longer than you’d expect. With time, a currant will continue to grow into a dense protective shrub to keep your hot tub feeling like it’s in a private protected garden.

Create a Backyard Lounge

A great way to include your hot tub in your landscaping is to focus on creating a backyard lounge area. This area will create a space where your hot tub is only one part of the experience rather than a glaring focal point. 

As part of your lounge space, consider adding plush, comfortable lounge chairs, patio furniture, and shade structures. By creating a more comfortable outdoor space, you’ll find reasons to be outside more often for more than just a soak in your hot tub. 

Warm Up by the Fire

Most of us love to use our hot tubs to relax after a long day of stress. The water is calming and relaxing, but it can be a bit drab to be in a hot tub when it’s dark outside. 

Try adding a punch of light and warmth to your hot tub landscaping by adding a relaxing warm glow and the soft crackle of a fire. A fire pit or gas fire feature near your hot tub can help create a warm cozy-feeling space even if your yard is covered in snow. 

Wall Off for Privacy

Hot tubs are a perfect place to sit back, relax, and let the tensions of your day melt away. But, for some people, it’s impossible to relax knowing your neighbors could be watching you. Your landscaping choices can help create the privacy and comfort you’re looking for while still looking great. 

Consider using natural barriers to create privacy. Large shrubs, trees, or even a wall planter can keep your space feeling fresh and protected. For more rugged landscaping designs, consider creating a barrier with large boulders or a rough-hewn brick barrier. 

If you are looking to create a more modern design style, adding a hardwood or bamboo slatted fence will help create a protected space that doesn’t feel closed in. 

Unify with Lighting

No one wants bright lights shining in their eyes as they’re trying to relax in their hot tub. But you shouldn’t be relaxing in a dark void either. A crucial part of making your above-ground hot tub landscaping ideas shine is finding a way to light your design without taking away from the function of your hot tub. 

Start by lighting the landscape, not the tub. Simple, clean, warm light directed to the elements around your hot tub will help accentuate your landscaping without bringing unwanted attention or brightness to the hot tub. 

Deck Out Your Hot Tub

A reliable landscaping option for any hot tub is a well-kept deck. For the best results, match your deck’s stain and finish to your hot tub’s cabinet. 

Your deck’s design should look great, but it also needs to be a functional space. The most common mistakes people make come from assuming they’d make a hot tub deck the same way they’d make a regular deck. 

This can include mistakes like: 

  • Not choosing waterproof or water-resistant materials
  • Not giving space for tech support
  • Not providing enough space for water to drain between deck boards or having too much space between deck boards. 
  • Creating designs that become slick when damp or wet

As long as you keep in mind the special considerations of making a deck for a hot tub, you can create a relaxing and inviting space. 

Keep It Simple

Hot Tub Landscaping
Hot tub in the garden of contemporary house.

Hot tubs are meant to be a relaxing space. By cluttering your landscaping with a host of plants, bushes, trees, lights, candles, torches, towels, stairs, chairs, tables, umbrellas, privacy walls, paving tiles, rocks, waterfalls, and everything else you can find, your calm space becomes a chaotic mess. You should never use every hot tub landscaping idea all at once.

Be selective about what you choose to include. When you’re planning your landscaping and decorating, try to keep your design to only two or three elements in each area. This will create a clear message and feeling for your space without being overwhelmed with clutter. 

Unify Your Design with Repetition

Repetition of a landscaping design is the best way to keep your space feeling unified and clean without cluttering your design with too much. For example, if you have a granite-colored cabinet, repeating those colors in granite-colored patio furniture with dark metal accents is enough to create a clean, unified look. 

Because there is such a wide range of colors and designs for hot tub cabinets, you can either choose to match your landscaping to your hot tub or make your hot tub match your landscaping. 

Aqua Rec’s Can Help

If you have questions about building a new spa or hot tub for your home, contact Aqua Rec’s today. With our huge selection of Viking and Bullfrog spas, we can help you find the right one for you.