Hardscaping is a great way to cut down on lawn maintenance chores, but most homeowners with hardscaping tend to agree on this point – the number one irritant when it comes to this type of driveway, path or patio area is the weeds and small grass tufts that sprout up through the cracks or between pavers.
But the good news that there’s no need to rely on a time-consuming solution like applying herbicide purchased at your neighborhood hardware store. The truth is, all you need is a scraper. Like peeling paint off an old piece of furniture, scraping away – sometimes at an angle – does the trick. Then, all that’s needed is a quick pass a wet vacuum, dry vacuum or air compressor.
Sometimes, especially with brick hardscaping, it will be best to use a pressure washer. Blasting away at the right distance will quickly uproot and push away the intrusive vegetation. For any little indents or gaps left in the joints, filling in with some polymeric sand will make it all look as good as new.
On the other hand, fixing cracks in an asphalt driveway is a little more complicated. But not too complicated. Some like to use pourable concrete, others prefer a textured caulk. Either way, the trick is to apply in one-inch layers and then pack in with a trowel or even, believe it or not, screwdriver.
For longer-term prevention, on a brick driveway for example, there’s the option of bathing the entire surface in a liquid sealant. The only problem is that this will inevitably change the color of the surface. The pro here usually outweighs the con, but just to be sure, apply initially to just a small part of the driveway and let dry. To make sure the end result is going to be OK with all household members.
The same applies for straight cleaning. A solution of one part bleach and ten parts water will do the trick for most hardscaping, but again, there’s always that wild card of one receiving area maybe changing in ways that are too dramatic. So as with the liquid sealant, be sure to test on a small area first.
If you’ve got questions about keeping your hardscaped areas looking sharp, give us a call. We handle hardscape installation in the Minneapolis area.