5 Different Applications for Gravel

5 Different Applications for Gravel

It’s used to add traction to icy roads in winter and pave the way to areas off the beaten track, but gravel can also serve a variety of purposes in your yard.  If you’re looking for creative ways to utilize this versatile and affordable hardscaping element, here are a few great ideas for installing gravel in your yard.

Patios and Walkways

One of the most common uses for gravel around the home is creating functional patios and walkways.  If cement doesn’t appeal to you, and natural stone pavers are outside your price range, gravel is an ideal hardscaping alternative that delivers utility and visual appeal.  With relatively minimal effort and expense, you can fill in the areas where you want to place walkways and patios with gravel to create an attractive and long-lasting addition to your yard.

Paired with Stone

Gravel offers an appealing way to add hardscaped surfaces around your property, in and of itself, but it also pairs well with other hardscaping elements like decorative rocks, pavers, or boulders, for example.  Whether you want to nestle stepping stones in a bed of gravel for a beautiful aesthetic, or you’re looking to cover a barren hillside with gravel, boulders, and sparse vegetation, you’ll find that gravel pairs exceedingly well with other hardscaping elements to add function and value to your yard.

Planter Beds

It’s not uncommon to add mulch to planter beds to prevent evaporation and water waste.  The main problem with mulch, however, is that it breaks down and must be replaced frequently.  This is where gravel provides a superior solution.

Gravel is ideal for use in planter beds, especially when you want to place flora around the perimeter of your home without compromising the foundation.  It’s also a great option for use with edible gardens, where you want optimal drainage and materials that help to prevent the growth of weeds.  Opt for chunkier gravel to prevent displacement in larger garden areas.

Property Drainage

Even with a sound gutter system, regions that receive a lot of rain may require additional measures to funnel water away from the foundations of the home, or away from the property in general.  This is especially true if grading on your property is an issue.

Gravel provides the solutions you seek, whether you opt to place French drains around the perimeter of your home or you install a permeable driveway.  Keep in mind, the latter will not only help to funnel excessive rainwater or runoff away from the property, but it also holds up well to winter weather conditions that could damage other surfaces, like concrete.

Erosion Control

Any yard that features a slope could succumb to ongoing erosion issues, whether the area is barren, covered in grass, or dotted with trees and bushes.  When used with complementary measures like retaining walls, mesh to reinforce soil, and strategic planting, just for example, gravel can contribute to a winning strategy for erosion control.