Gravel is one of the more affordable and versatile materials that can be used in landscaping practices. The wide array of colours, sizes and shapes allows gravel to be used in a virtually limitless number of ways. To show how it can be a practical landscaping material, we’ve put together this list of five tips for adding gravel to your landscape.
Employ A Landscape Fabric
Laying your gravel on top of a layer of landscape fabric is a smart idea for several reasons. It will inhibit the growth of weeds and other unwanted plants. It will reduce the amount of gravel needed to cover an area. It will stabilize the soil and prevent your gravel from disappearing into the ground. And it will help your soil retain moisture. Putting down a layer of landscape fabric before you add your gravel will reduce the need for a lot of future maintenance.
Help With Water Drainage
Gravel is an ideal material to be used in areas with drainage problems or where water tends to accumulate. A gravel trench can be used to direct water away from the base of your house or garage. Conversely, a bed of gravel can be used to trap water and prevent it from running off towards your house or directly into the sewers.
Control Soil Erosion
If you have areas that are prone to erosion, gravel is heavy enough to add stability and prevent soil from being washed away. Gravel is especially effective on slopes, hilly areas and other inclines. Combined with retaining walls, plants and mesh screens, gravel can help areas prone to soil erosion to be stabilized.
Fire Pit Surrounds
If you have a fire pit, it’s important to have a non-flammable material surrounding it. Gravel is ideal due to its price, maneuverability, its ability to withstand sparks and resistance to staining. If you do end up with soot or ashes on the gravel you can simply rake the area and it will appear as new.
Excessive water runoff in urban areas can lead to flooding and poor water quality. You can do your part by making as much of your property as possible permeable to water. A gravel driveway will soak up much more water than a concrete or asphalt pad. Benefit the urban environment by opting for a gravel driveway instead of an impermeable slab.