Boasting waterfalls, rocks and natural features, some pools are more decorative than others. Unfortunately, some of these items get occasionally ignored during pool cleanings, causing algae to build up from water splashing or running over them. Once you discover a coating of the green slimy stuff, you'll need to clean it off so it doesn't contaminate your pool.
Remove the rocks from the pool area, if possible. It is better to clean them away from the pool water to avoid contamination.
Place the rocks on a plastic disposable sheet and pressure-wash them to remove most of the gunk. Turn the rocks over and repeat on the other side. Rocks can withstand more pressure that things such as wood, so turn up the dial on the machine to increase the pressure.
Pour straight vinegar over the rocks one by one and scrub with a brush. Keep a watering hose handy to rinse off the vinegar.
Leave the rocks out in the air and sun for a day or two to kill any remaining algae. Turn the rocks over halfway through so both sides can dry.
Return the rocks to their places in the pool area.
Collect moss from the woods or from your garden. Search for healthy green moss and gently pry it from the soil in strips or chunks.
Pour 1 cup buttermilk in a blender. Add a handful of your moss pieces.
Pulse the blender on low for several seconds until you have a lumpy moss-and-buttermilk slurry.
Rub the buttermilk and moss mixture onto clay pots and rocks in the garden. Slather the surfaces with a thick coating.
Set the rocks and pots in deep shade. Too much sun will dry out the surface too quickly and kill the moss.
Mist the moss daily with water until it is well established. The surface of your pots and rocks will produce a pale green bloom which will spread across the surface.
Put on a pair of heavy work gloves. While river rocks are usually smooth, rocks are known to have jagged edges. Roll a wheelbarrow and several buckets close to your garden bed.
Dig a shovel into your garden bed and lift out the river rocks. Transfer the rocks to the wheelbarrow or the buckets. If your river rock layer is not thick, use your hands to cup river rocks and transfer them to the wheelbarrow or buckets so you don't remove too much soil from the garden bed.
Dig a trowel into the soil once most of the river rocks have been removed. This will help you uncover river rocks buried in the soil. Wipe off as much dirt as you can and remove them with your hands.
Use rocks instead of mulch only around plants that have a high drought-resistance. This includes many trees, shrubs and cacti, but excludes many flowers. The drought-resistance of a plant is generally listed on its information tag.
Build a border wall around the plants that you want to mulch with rocks. A border wall prevents rocks from getting spread into undesirable locations, such as driveways.
Layer rocks to a depth of 1 to 2 inches around the base of newly established plants to ensure that they don't receive too much heat and lose too much water at night, which may prevent the plants from growing. Layer rocks around established plants as high as the edge of the border wall to achieve the look that you desire.
Water plants as usual through the rock mulch. Apply the water over the rocks and it sinks down through the rocks and into the soil.
Based on traditional Japanese gardening technique, zen gardens promote tranquility and contemplation. A well-known form is the dry zen garden which uses rocks, gravel and sand to recreate the stillness of water.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil on the stove.
Pour the boiling water into a large bucket.
Pour the hot water over the rocks. It will seep into the weeds; they will turn brown within three days.
Put one gallon of water in a bucket.
Add 1 cup of table salt to the water. Stir with a wooden spoon until the salt dissolves.
Pour the salt water over the rocks. The weeds will shrivel up and die within four to five days. They most likely will not grow back because the salt kills the weeds at the roots.
Go to a site where you can see that a company is remodeling the landscaping and ask if you can have some of the rocks. Sometimes they just might not care because a lot of times they have to haul it out anyways if it is not being reused.
Check with farmers. Over the years they dig up there land and come across different landscaping rocks and really don't want anything to do with most of them. A lot of times if you offer to come out and get them they may be really happy.
Ask your friends and family if they know anyone looking to get rid of there landscaping rocks or looking to sell them for a very cheap price.
Check your local paper for people selling them. A lot of times papers will offer free ad space for cheap items and this is a great area to look for people just looking to get rid of landscaping rocks.
Till the garden area, preferably with a tiller. A tiller easily breaks up the soil and uncovers rocks. Push the tines of the tiller into the soil. Continue breaking up the soil in one area until you reach a depth of 8 to 10 inches. Work in rows to break up the soil in the area completely. Do one row and turn around at the end to work to the opposite end.
Place a garden glove on each hand to protect your hands from the sharp edges of the rocks.
Dig through the soil by hand to find rocks. Remove each rock from the soil. Place the rocks in an outside garbage container or move the rocks to another area of your yard for decoration or drainage, if you prefer
Remove larger rocks with a pointed shovel. Push the point of the shovel underneath the rock. Push the shovel into the soil until the rock starts to lift from the ground. Lift the rock from underneath by hand.