Paving (a type of hardscaping) may seem like a rather mundane topic, but it sets the foundation for all your outdoor areas. There are many materials available to choose from, and in this series we’ll explore the most common ones.
When creating a beautiful landscape that not only fits your home and your budget, a decision that needs to be made early on is what type of paving material to choose. It does matter – you cannot just go with any material. You should choose one that brings out best in the nearby garden beds, sitting area, outdoor living area or even the front walkway to your home. These each make a statement, and you want the statement to be a good one when others look at it.
Two Main Categories of Paving Materials
The majority of paving materials will fall in either one of two different categories. They are either quarried stone or composite materials.
- The most common quarried stone used for paving is slate or granite. The rock is usually split, cut, or crushed into the desired shapes.
- Composite materials are made from substances such as cement, concrete, or brick and are processed and molded before being let to dry.
Each type of paving material has considerations as to cost, as well as pros and cons. With this information, a homeowner is then able to make an informed decision on which they feel is best for their MN home and the budget that they have.
One of the most versatile and luxurious materials to pave with, stone also is extremely durable. It comes in many sizes, shapes and styles so that it can fit your wants and needs in your yard. However, stone is one of the more expensive choices.
There are also some considerations to make when purchasing stone pavers. You want to go with a thickness of around 2 inches or more, to ensure that heavy foot traffic will not be an issue. You want to go with something that has a texture for gripping, and lies flat to be easy on the legs and ankles. Another consideration is to see what the stone looks like when it become wet, since oftentimes it changes color completely.
Here at ALD we specialize in custom stone work, and we highly recommend stone pavers over materials such as cement or brick, because natural stone holds up better to our weather. We really like using stone for walkways. (If you need a little inspiration, visit our Pinterest board, Walkway and Driveway Ideas.)
Choosing the right paving material is crucial if you’re going to get the right look and functionality to your outdoor areas. Speak with us here at Architectural Landscape Design – we install a variety of beautiful paving materials, and we can help you make the right selection. We are a licensed MN landscaping design and installation contractor specializing in custom stone paving.
(Watch for Part 2 of this post coming later this week.)