How to Landscape Using Gravel & Grass

Overview

Many homeowners stress making the interior of a house beautiful, neglecting the outside appearance. A well-maintained house stands out and is impressive to visitors, home owners and people on the street. Landscaping is not difficult or expensive, and with a few ideas, you can mix grass and gravel to create a functional and decorative exterior that will stand out and attract attention. Many homeowners strive for a lush green lawn, but the color and texture of gravel enhances the green and makes a bold statement.

Step 1

Step out into your yard to get an idea of the space available. Determine how much sunlight hits various areas so you can incorporate grass there. Also decide where you want to include any gate or fence; children play equipment or swings and any gravel pathways leading to the yard. Consider whether you want to remove any existing vegetation or work around it.

Step 2

Draw a plan of your yard on graph paper, and decide what part you want to make grassy, and where you want to add gravel. Ideally, grass should be on sunny areas or partially shaded ones. Consider adding gravel to shaded areas. Pea gravel is a suitable option as it is light in color and small, and makes good pathways or landing spots under swings and slides. Make all the necessary alterations on graph paper until you get the desired landscape, so you can incorporate it in your yard.

Step 3

Using graph paper as a guide, mark areas in your yard for grass and gravel with spray paint or powdered chalk. You can make straight lines or soft curved edges to distinguish the end of a grassy area and the start of the gravel pad.

Step 4

Wear your gloves and remove weeds, rocks and plant debris from the area. Collect them in a wheelbarrow to dispose off. Use a spade to remove 3-inches of soil from the areas where you want to install gravel. Keep in mind that pea gravel can spread easily and will need to be edged so it is contained to a particular spot.

Step 5

Purchase masonry, plastic, metal or wooden edging from your local garden supply center. Also purchase several tons of pea gravel, and semi porous landscape fabric. Use a hand shovel to create a narrow trench around your gravel beds and install your edging material into it. Make sure it is secure and does not wobble.

Step 6

Lay the landscape fabric over the area where you want to add gravel. Make holes in it if you want to add any plants. Add gravel over the fabric, ensuring it is in level with the surrounding area, and rake it so it is even.

Step 7

Loosen the soil over the area where you want to add grass, and install strips of sod over it. Water thoroughly for the first two weeks so the roots establish themselves.

Things You'll Need

  • Graph paper
  • Pencil
  • Eraser
  • Powdered chalk
  • Gloves
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Shovel
  • Edging material
  • Landscape fabric
  • Pea gravel
  • Sod

References

  • thisoldhouse.com: How to Lay a Gravel Path
  • landscapeexpert.co.uk: Alternatives to Grass
  • realestateproarticles.com: Gravel Vs. Grass

Who Can Help

  • gardeningknowhow.com: Tips fof Choosing Lawn Edging
Keywords: diy landscaping, gravel landscaping, grass landscaping

About this Author

Tanya Khan is a freelance author and consultant, having written hundreds of thousands of words for various online and print sources. She has an MBA in Marketing but her passion lies in giving her words wings.