Unlike flowers that bloom a few times a year and deciduous trees that lose their leaves each winter, rocks can be beautiful throughout the year. From goliath monumental boulders to rock gardens filled with pebbles, there are plenty of ideas for landscaping with stones.
Large, boulder-sized stones can serve as a focal point in a landscape and serve as a piece of natural artwork. Although expensive to obtain and transport, once in place, they require little to no maintenance. Smaller boulders can be found in most home improvement stores. For larger boulders, either contact a local quarry or a special stone and boulder seller.
Small waterfalls, ponds and fountains work well combined with stone landscaping. The rocks serve as a natural container and look very pretty with water running down their sides in the case of a waterfall. Although water elements tend to be expensive, the effect can really elevate an outdoor space. Pumps and other fountain equipment tend to wear out more quickly in humid areas as opposed to arid places. Know that if you decide to keep fish in your pond, such as koi, you will need to keep the pond clean and not choked with debris, such as dead fall leaves.
Smaller stones are used in the construction of rock gardens. Rock gardens can be more informal, with desert plants growing among the rocks, or more formal, like the raked Japanese rock garden. The rocks are good for desert plants because they provide excellent drainage. If you are looking to cut costs, see if there is a quarry near your site, as quarries often sell their scraps inexpensively. Otherwise, head to a home improvement store and get a few bags of small stones or pebbles.
Stone paths can be made of many different types of rocks from slate to simple concrete. Some landscapers prefer ordered, even stones with geometrical edges. Other prefer a more natural look. Some maintenance of the surrounding plant life is required to make sure that the stone path does not get covered up. A stone path over a small stream can lend a particular magic to parts of the landscape, especially if the path leads to a secret alcove. If your land has a slope is some areas, consider using steppers, stones cut to resemble stair steps. These are not only beautiful but highly functional because they make it easier to get up steeper inclines.