Hardscaping With Rocks and Stones

rocks-pathHardscaping is a great way to cut back on lawn care chores while keep your yard beautiful. It basically includes any type of landscaping that doesn’t exclusively utilize plants to cover the ground.

Popular hardscaping practices you might recognize are rock gardens, stone paths, and stone-based edging around gardens, decks, trees, etc. So it’s safe to say that most hardscaping installations include some form of rocks- either natural or manicured.

Let’s take a look at a few popular choices for hardscaping projects.

River Rocks and Tumbled Stones

River rocks are naturally sourced, often found at either your local quarry or major gardening store. They range in color from grey and off-white to light pinks and browns. Good for full rock beds, edging, and filling between paving stones, river rocks add a soft and natural look to your yard.

Tumbled stones are sourced from a variety of locations, and are commercially softened in a tumbler to create rounded edges. They have brighter, deeper colors than most river rocks, which makes them a good choice for more ornamental designs.

Both types can also be used as an alternative to mulching around trees and shrubs. While mulch made from bark and other organic substances needs replacing on a seasonal basis, ornamental rocks offer similar protection and insulation for far longer. You only need to rinse them out occasionally, to prevent buildup that can lead to mold and algae.

Cut Stones and Bedrock

Both of these materials are great both for flat surfaces and for borders that require a bit of height. The flat slabs can be pieced together and sealed with concrete, or stacked in a staggered fashion that creates natural stability.

Cut stones are found in a variety of colors, shapes and weights. Again, they can be found at a quarry, garden store, or home improvement shop. Your local lawn care company may also carry cut stones and bedrock specifically for landscaping projects. Check with Frisco Lawn Pros to see if this is an endeavor we can help you out with.

Bedrock is typically black or dark grey, whereas cut stones come in a broad range of colors. For flat hardscaping such as decks and walkways, there will typically be a bed of sand or bedding laid beneath them beforehand. For layered installations such as raised walls for a garden bed, there may be a base layer in place in addition to digging a deeper foundation.

Paving Stones

These are your typical pre-cut stones, made from a variety of materials. Some are a solid block of rock, while others may be a mixture of stones and cement. They’re typically about 16-18 inches across, to accommodate the average adult footprint.

Paving stones can be set down on their own after digging a space into your soil, or they may be outlined with loose rocks for aesthetics. They can be used for traditional walkways, or grouped together for a small standing area. Before using them in larger decking projects, be sure you consult a professional for appropriate preparation and placement.

For more great ideas about hardscaping, check out Landscaping Ideas on a Budget: Hardscapes.


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