Concrete is one way to transform the look of your entire yard. Whether it's a patio you are craving or a walkway that you need, concrete can be the answer. It is versatile and long-lasting. Once you complete the project, you can rest assured that you won't have to do it again for some time. Before getting started on the project, determine whether you need a permit and contact the proper municipal agency.
Run a rototiller over the grass to loosen it and prepare the soil. The roots will come out of the ground as you dig deeper. Work until the plant pieces are all broken up to ensure that they don't grow back, through the concrete.
Rake the debris to remove it from the area and provide a cleaner base for the concrete.
Measure the area where you will be pouring concrete. Use the measurements to determine how much lumber you need to build a form to hold the concrete in place. This is a barrier with edges to keep the concrete from traveling outside a certain area. If you are making a curved sidewalk, use flexible hardboard siding. For other forms, use 2-by-4 hardwood.
Screw or hammer lumber pieces together to create the form. Lay it down in the desired location. Add stakes every few feet to anchor it in place.
Add steel mesh to the inside of the form to reinforce the concrete.
Mix dry concrete with water in a pail. Follow the instructions on the package for exact measurements. Add water until the mix is pliable and thicker than soup.
Pour the concrete into the form, covering the steel mesh.
Smooth the concrete with a trowel. Dip the tool in water as you work for a smooth, flat finish. Let the concrete dry and harden overnight. Remove the forms once it is dry.