Pea Gravel Landscaping Ideas
Pea Gravel Landscaping Ideas – If you have an outdoor space with plenty of sunlight, you may have the perfect environment to have your own gravel garden.
That’s right, these gorgeous gardens require very little maintenance. And once installed, gravel gardening really requires little effort.
Pea Gravel Landscaping Ideas
*I’ve added an updated photo at the bottom of the post showing how fast the plants were growing after 3 1/2 months.
What Is Pea Gravel? And How To Use It
It was our first summer in our new home. We only lived there for a few months and had to take care of some major renovation needs inside.
As you can see, the situation was very difficult. 85% of what you see on the main road is weeds. And all the surrounding trees and bushes were dying from soil erosion.
Last summer I put in a new concrete fence, which became a priority because the existing lot is dug up.
This fence is adjacent to this weedy flag path. Fortunately, almost a year of waiting for it to be solved gave me time to come up with such a great solution!
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I just finished a tutorial on concrete rocks. They hide the new solar lights I got. I put them in the garden and light up the path and the plants!
You don’t want the gravel to be different sizes as this will compact the gravel which will crush the plant roots.
The right plants for a gravel garden are drought tolerant. Look for plants growing on rocks or in dry gardens.
Measure the length by the width of your garden to determine how much gravel you need. This gives you square meters.
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For the size of gravel needed for a gravel garden, most will fill 100 square feet at a depth of 2 inches. It should be a ton. Enter at least four inches.
The company I used had a minimum delivery requirement of 3 tons and I used about 2 tons. I will use the rest in another garden bed.
Pebble garden beds are just one way to use rocks as part of your landscaping. Here are 21 more ideas for using rocks in the landscape.
Get your free pocket guide. It has a handy chart to help you choose the right combination for your project.
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The first step is to create a focal point or several focal points. It could be a tree, a group of bushes, large rocks, garden art or even a water feature.
Consider some way forward. Your garden bed may be small and may not require a path, but may be centered around a larger path.
Use pavers or steps to create a gravel path that mimics the natural shape and weave plants between them. Here are 15 garden path ideas to inspire your journey!
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After setting the path, you can plan the placement of the plants. Consider sunlight and shade.
If part of your garden is covered by large trees, you should plan to plant plants in partial shade in this area.
My planning method was to first draw a picture of the garden. It’s an odd shape and I had to start some planning before the bigger tree and huge bush disappeared.
After getting the shape on paper and measuring it, I could order the gravel and have it delivered.
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The space I have to work in has three levels and is on a slope. I have a permanent border with glued together planting blocks that create a retaining wall.
It is an evergreen tree and that was important because in the winter I want to look up from the table and see something green.
The site is in full sun, so a tree that could provide shade but not overwhelm the space was important. Wax myrtle grows no taller than 12 to 20 feet.
Then I planned the route. Knowing that I would be making concrete pads for this project, I took the time to draw out which shapes would go where.
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For continuity, I used leftover square concrete pavers that were the same as the adjacent paver area I built last year.
I had a very unique idea for a garden path and made my own stamped concrete pavers that I mixed. The link will take you to this tutorial.
This is not a formal garden so I designed a square flagstone path to go alongside the longer stamped concrete pavers.
I wanted the plants to grow close enough together to allow enough room for the ground cover to grow and also within walking distance of each other.
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The adjacent pad area and a few remnant pads are white, but the new ones are gray.
I’m happy with the mix of gray and white as it adds a casual touch to the garden and goes well with my white concrete pavers.
Creeping phlox was the only plant I tackled, so I still needed an ornamental grass, a perennial, a shrub, and one more short ground cover/border.
I made a trip to my local plant nursery, North Georgia Natural Plant Nursery, to be sure to bring my design drawing showing the maximum mature heights and widths that would fit in the space.
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I got great suggestions for drought tolerant plants that fit my criteria and brought them home.
Good soil preparation is the first step. To begin with, you need to remove all weeds and plants.
Don’t be tempted to use landscape fabric because the roots of new plants need to get into the soil.
Remember, the idea of 4 to 5 inches of gravel is that this depth is sufficient to suppress weeds, but you must work carefully to remove existing weeds.
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Use a hoe to scrape off the top layer of weeds and then rake away weeds, leaves, other debris and loose soil.
Try to prevent soil or other organic matter from building up on or in the gravel.
If your roots stick out of the ground, I recommend pulling them out as best you can or using scissors to flush them with soil.
The area of the garden should be at a sufficient level. If your gravel garden area is uneven, you should at least level the soil to remove dips or peaks.
How To Build A Pea Gravel Patio
This would have to be done with the gravel and compensated by going a few inches deeper on the low side and a few inches deeper on the high side.
However, I had areas with large potholes and very high spots that I filled with mostly mountain soil.
Since I had crushed granite left over from the patio tiles, I used paving stones on top.
My entire garden space consists of three levels. The track area has an upper and lower level, with stone steps leading to the lower level. It’s all gravel.
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The upper surface of the bed is mulched instead of gravel. It is sloped more than gravel, so I was worried about the soil slipping onto the gravel.
I placed gravel near the edges on the mulched side to prevent soil erosion and prevent it from spilling into the gravel area.
It was 1 to 2 inches thick and had a band anywhere from 2 to 5 inches wide depending on how steep it was along the edge.
Again, aside from weed prevention, the reason for this depth is that it is the ideal depth for planting plants that easily take hold and root in the ground.
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Stick them to the ground. If the ground is hard, you may need to use a rubber mallet.
Measure 4 inches from the ground and wrap a piece of blue tape around the peg, placing the bottom of the tape at the 4 inch mark.
Since the tape is about 2 inches thick, the top is less than 6 inches, so you need to fill the gravel at least to the bottom of the blue tape, but not over the top of the tape.
Or, if you can’t get to the area through the debris like I did, use a shovel and dig it into the soil.
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Use a nail to level the gravel. After you dig it a few times, you’ll have a better idea of how many more wheels you’ll need before you reach the 4-5 inch mark.
Gravel should be washed. If you don’t know if the gravel is pre-washed, use a garden hose to wash the gravel after each gravel placement.
Whether the dust settles remains to be seen. If you work on a windy day, you’ll appreciate it too.
Place the tiles in the designated locations and place them in the gravel so that they are about half covered with gravel on each side.
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