Robot versus Mesquite Trees?

scottts

Gold Supporter
Nov 13, 2019
66
Gilbert, AZ
Hi,

My pool has two very large mesquite trees near it that provide a nice amount of shade from the western sun in the summer. However, these trees drop not only small grass-blade type leaves, which wind up mostly in the skimmer, but also 3-4" long twigs every time the wind blows strongly. These twigs are problematic because they sink. My pool has in-floor cleaning (yes, I know its not liked here, but it exists) but it doesn't get most of the twigs into the main drain and when it does, they are thin enough to go right through the holes in the debris and pump baskets.

I'm thinking of getting a robot to get these pesky things out of the pool (8' max depth). Do you think an M600 robot would do this effectively? Anybody actually have mesquites and us a robot for this? I'd get rid of the trees but they have been around a long time and I'm hoping this is just a seasonal problem.

Also, anybody know of a pump basket liner, similar to a skimmer sock, that might stop these? I don't think a standard skimmer sock is going to withstand the flow in this application.

Thanks!
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
16,589
Tucson, AZ
I had a mesquite tree near my pool (emphasis on the verb HAD), and it’s primary function was to clog my suction lines routinely. Oh, and it sometimes provided shade. A chain saw took care of the issue.

Eventually those mesquite needles are going to get into your pump and clog up your impeller. If enough of them get into your suction lines, they will cause a clog. The beans will also make a mess of your pool.

Either pay for a tree service company to heavily prune them back away from the pool or remove them. They are not worth it. If you do remove them, there are much less messier trees you can plant for shade.
 
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Rattus Suffocatus

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2019
899
Corona de Tucson, AZ
I understand the importance of them in the desert ecosystem. However translating that to HOA requirements (yes, that and Ocotillos) or anyone actually using them as an ornamental tree is one of the few things that I likely will never understand about Arizona. I have great respect for them in the desert, but not in our yards.

I suspect a sock can help. The Paramount skimmer has a pretty good one built into it so I have not had to add one. The closest Mesquite is in my front yard and I still see some of those annoying little leaves in the skimmer occasionally. I also didn't realize until this year that they die off and regrow. I was hoping that the tree would continue to die off but I wasn't that lucky.

Try the sock but check it frequently. Good luck. Otherwise the wood works well in a smoker with baby back pork ribs...
 

Katodude

Silver Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
738
West Palm Beach/Florida
I know that they are not well liked here, but consider a Solar Breeze. I have a lot of grass around my pool and a full ficus hedge that constantly dumps stuff.

The solar breeze is not perfect for people that have a lot of stuff dumped into their pool it will help a lot.

It is also not a replacement for a standard pool robot. Get the M600 also.
 

Brett S

Well-known member
Mar 15, 2019
443
Orlando
The solar breeze is not perfect for people that have a lot of stuff dumped into their pool it will help a lot.
Did you mean that it is perfect? I have considered getting a solar breeze for my pool. I have a couple of crape myrtles near my pool that drop a lot of leaves and seeds and flowers into the pool during certain seasons.
 

scottts

Gold Supporter
Nov 13, 2019
66
Gilbert, AZ
Thanks guys. I would never have planted these trees. No HOA, just a rural-ish county island in the middle of Gilbert AZ. Based on where they are,, I'd say 1/2 the mesquites and cacti around here were volunteers, not planted by humans.

I am using a sock in the skimmer - the surface water isn't the problem. The problem with a sock in the pump basket is the way the water enters through the side of the basket. I can't get the sock on there in a way that will stay in place. Somebody somewhere must make a more mesh style basket.

I'm going to have the trees trimmed back and get the robot to get rid of the twigs. If that is unsatisfactory I'll terminate the trees. I suspect they will provide smoking wood for the rest of my life.
 

JoyfulNoise

TFP Expert
Platinum Supporter
May 23, 2015
16,589
Tucson, AZ
If you search around, there are local folks that will take down big mesquite trees and haul off the wood for sale and personal use. I know a guy around here that does it as a side job and sells the wood he harvests from homeowners. But he does leave a stump behind that you either have to poison or grind down. Stump grinder rentals from Home Depot run about $150/day.
 

Katodude

Silver Supporter
Aug 22, 2017
738
West Palm Beach/Florida
Did you mean that it is perfect? I have considered getting a solar breeze for my pool. I have a couple of crape myrtles near my pool that drop a lot of leaves and seeds and flowers into the pool during certain seasons.
Sorry, typo. The SolarBreeze is not perfect. However, for people that have a lot of stuff that drops in their pool (I am one of those), it is pretty good. It will hold about 2 skimmer baskets full of stuff and will pick up most of the floaties. You decide how often you want to empty it but it does not go through your plumbing or filter. Just like I will always have a robot I will always have a SolarBreeze (or some equivalent). YMMV.
 

scottts

Gold Supporter
Nov 13, 2019
66
Gilbert, AZ
So I feel compelled to provide a status on where I'm at now. I did get the robot, ran it, it picked up the stuff that I needed it to. All was well.

Then the #@$%^ mesquite trees went into their pollinating period - the mesquite trees must die. The trees are just west of the pool and here that means every time the slightest breeze blows I get a literal carpet of floating yellow on my surface and in the skimmer. I remove pounds of the stuff every day. Of course the robot is no help here. I wonder how long it will last.

BTW, I know nobody loves ORP here, but you can actually see the effect of this on the ORP of the pool. Its actually pretty cool. I also think the pollen is acidic as the acid dosing seems to have gone way down during this nightmare. So at least its interesting from a scientific standpoint. The IC-40 has been on continuously during this. Its keeping up but its working hard. FC was 4 at about 5:30PM yesterday.

So you guys were right - its intolerable - its mind shatteringly frustrating in fact.

Already making appointments for removal estimates.
 

scottts

Gold Supporter
Nov 13, 2019
66
Gilbert, AZ
I think they are velvet mesquites based on internet pictures. When the wind blows its like a yellow snow storm. Hopefully its a short term phenomenon.

Fortunately no polo verdes near by.
 

Rattus Suffocatus

Silver Supporter
Jun 5, 2019
899
Corona de Tucson, AZ
Okay so I took a walk with my kids to the local gas station to get some snacks today, and I wasn't shocked to see yellow pods on some of the Mesquites on the sides of the road. The Palo Verdes dropped all of their blooms and then that happened. It's amazing it was almost like the two species of trees worked out a deal or something.

The other odd 2020 thing is I also saw a surgical mask along the same road. I got to admit that was the first time I saw that exact type of litter.

I am always amazed here, that is for sure. Almost three years here and I never saw those Mesquites do that before....