Reno Report - How To Build A Stone Walkway


this past Canada Day long weekend we paid a little much needed attention to the outside of our house. as you can clearly see, our home is situated on a pretty steep slope, which can make walking down the side of our house very risky. because of that area being our access to the backyard, our grass actually doesn't even want to grow there anymore, so in most cases you just slide yourself down a little mud patch. not so fun when with a lawn mower or when balancing a tray of drinks, etc. being the home DIYer's that we are trying to be, we decided we would tackle building our own stone walkway to give us a much better walking path. after some research, reading and a car load of supplies from the always helpful, Home Depot, we finally managed to cross this project off our list and it has made a world of difference.

so, for anyone who is looking to add a little curb appeal, or function to your yard, here is our simple "how-to" for building your own stone walkway.

first start out by deciding on the stones you want to use. we were fortunate that we had been given some leftover concrete paver stones pieces from a project on another house, so we decided to take this opportunity to use those. once you have the stone pieces you wish to use, the next thing to do is to layout your pattern in the way in which you want it to appear when finished. as i mentioned the side walkway for us had little to no grass growing because of all the slipping and sliding, so we decided to arrange our stones 6 inches a part in the hopes of laying some grass seed between the stones and encourage some growth. fingers crossed!

once you have decided on your patten, you then need to mark the stone area. we used a flat edged shovel and cut around the perimeter of the stone creating a guided area to dig within. once you have your outline cut, dig out 6 inches of grass and earth to create an even hole. it is important to ensure you go at least 6 inches deep so that you can create a strong solid base for your stone path. next add a layer of landscape fabric cut to the size of your hole. this fabric is designed to help stop weed growth, encourage proper water drainage and to create a good non-slip base for your gravel fill to sit on. once your landscape fabric is in place, start adding in your gravel stones until you reach 3 inches thick. next add in 2 inches worth of screening (a very fine sand/stone) on top. using a level, or something with a straight edge, move the screening around in the hole to ensure a nice flat and level surface. be sure to consider how you want water to run away from you house and adjust any slightly curves or angles with your stone with that in mind.

once your think your screening is level, using a tamper, compress your sand mixture. this helps to ensure that all the sand and stones have started to settle into all the small cracks and grooves, making a nice even surface for your stone to sit on. once you have finished tamping, add your stone into the hole. if it doesn't sit flat and level to the ground, readjust by adding or moving the screening around. once you are happy with how the stone is sitting fill ing any surrounding cracks or holes with the earth you pulled out. make sure you pack it tightly enough to create a nice seal.

work your way stone by stone down your path until voila, your beautiful walkway is complete! as you can see from our yard we still have a lot on our "to-do" side of the house list, but at least we have one thing crossed off for now! this path now makes it much easier for us to carry working supplies for more projects, or food and drinks down for summer patio parties!


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