Advantages of Adding Mulch to Your Landscaping

Fresh laid mulch can make your gardens and landscaping areas look neat and tidy, but there is much more to mulch than just appearance. Mulch is a landscaping staple for the many advantages it offers. Mulch comes in many forms, including many types of bark or wood mulch, pine straw and other options. Here are some of the advantages of adding mulch to your landscaping besides aesthetics. 

  • Moisture control. Mulch is often used to hold in moisture in the soil. During the hot summers, water is at a premium. Keeping the moisture in the soil saves on irrigation and benefits your plants, trees and shrubs.
  • Preventing erosion. Mulch can help prevent erosion of top soil, especially on slopes and hills, keeping the nutrient-rich soil in place to feed your plantings.
  • Protecting roots. Mulch is used to protect the roots of trees and shrubs. Spreading mulch around the trunks of trees and around large shrubs can benefit the health of these larger plants.
  • Weed control. Laying mulch can prevent weed growth and keep your landscaping neat with low maintenance. Weeds not only detract for the beauty of your landscaping, they steal nutrients from the other plants.
  • During the winter months, mulch can insulate the soil and anything underneath. Often mulch is used above in-ground plumbing or septic areas to prevent freezing.
  • Adds nutrients. Some mulches breakdown over time and add extra nutrients to the soil.

While it is not mandatory to use mulch in landscaping, the benefits are plentiful. To determine the right mulch for your landscaping needs, consult with your local landscape supply store.

Posted on behalf of:
Green Brothers Earth Works
680 Franklin Rd, SE
Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 590-8220

Creative Ways to Use Boulders in Your Landscaping

Boulders are nature’s building blocks, coming in all shapes and sizes, with variances in color. From small boulders that are easily moved to large boulders that weigh hundreds of pounds, each is unique and can make a wonderful addition to your landscaping design. Here are some creative ways to use boulders in your home’s landscaping to add interest and function.

  • Driveway perimeter. Tired of people accidentally driving on your lawn? Large boulders are the perfect perimeter for your driveway to keep vehicles off your lawn. Unlike a fence that will be damaged if it is hit by a vehicle, boulders will stay intact and withstand a bumper hitting them every so often.
  • Garden edging. Small boulders make a great edging for garden areas and borders for your lawn. You can use similar sized boulders or add in different sizes for depth.
  • Creek beds. The most beautiful drainage option is the dry creek bed that offers a natural option to reduce water on your property. Boulders of various sizes can be used to enhance the effect of a natural creek flowing through your yard.
  • Giant boulders are a great option for patio furniture. They can be used as end tables, planters and even chairs. Boulders are wonderful for seating around the fire pit, with no worries of sparks ruining your natural furniture.

There are many ways to incorporate boulders into your landscaping in interesting and unique ways. Boulder come in many options and can vary in color and will last a lifetime. To find the best options, visit a quality quarry that offers many sizes and shapes of boulders for your use.

Posted on behalf of:
Culbreth Stone
1968 US-41
Pelham, TN 37366
(423) 930-8249

Caring for Your Flagstone Patio

Flagstone makes a beautiful patio to enjoy and brings a natural element to your outdoor living space. It can last for decades and is a wonderful choice for creating a lovely patio for your home. Flagstone is also low maintenance, but it is not completely without need for care. Weeds can grow between the pavers and moss can overtake the surface if your pavers are not maintained. To keep your flagstone patio looking beautiful, here are a few tips.

  • Preventing moss. Moss loves to grow on wet rocks and flagstone can be inviting to the green fungi. You can clean moss off your flagstone by scraping it away, but it will come back if you don’t plan for prevention. Dryness and light are your best tools to keep away moss. Keep sprinklers away from your pavers and cut back branches to let sunshine warm your stones to prevent moss growth.
  • Weed prevention. While you can pull the weeds and grass between your pavers or use weed control solutions, you will want to consider having the pavers reset for smaller spaces if you continue having weed growth. A professional paver installer can help reset your flagstone and add preventive fillers to reduce the number of weeds and keep maintenance low for your patio.

If you are only considering adding a flagstone patio, understanding the simple ways to keep it beautiful should be another selling point. Unlike many other patio materials, flagstone is naturally meant to withstand the elements and has already survived for many years in the outdoors. It is a gorgeous addition to any outdoor space and is easy to keep looking wonderful if you know the tricks to keep moss and weeds away.

Posted on behalf of:
Alliance Stone
5420 Campground Rd
Cumming, GA 30040
(404) 759-061

Creative Landscaping Uses for Railroad Ties

Railroad ties are a cost-effective landscaping element that are very versatile and easy to incorporate into your yard. Most railroad ties are very sturdy with approximate dimensions of 7” x 9” x 8’ but can vary slightly. The rough exterior can create a rustic look if desired, or they can be used as covered support for many different projects. Here are some creative ways to use sturdy railroad ties in your landscape design.

Flower Beds or Garden

Want to build an above-ground flower bed or garden? Railroad ties are perfect and easy to use. They can be stack 2-3 high to build an 8’ x 8’ garden bed to plant flowers, herbs or vegetables. Railroad stakes can be used to keep them in place, then fill the box with nutrient-rich soil from your local landscape supplier.

Edging

Railroad ties make a great edging or border for your garden areas if you like the rustic look. They can also be a great border for your driveway to keep vehicles off your lawn.

Retaining Walls

If you are building a retaining wall, railroad ties are hefty and sturdy, making them a good choice for low walls. Railroad ties are excellent building materials that are easier to use for straight walls and usually less expensive than many types of stone or pavers.

Fencing

Railroad ties can make an interesting fence, with posts that can last for decades. They are much thicker than average fencing, creating a unique look that is very sturdy.

Your local landscape supplier with ample space is the place to go for railroad ties. Due to their size, only suppliers with room for these large timbers keep them in stock. Call around your area to find a supplier that can fill your order to use railroad ties for your next landscaping project.

Posted on behalf of:
Green Brothers Earth Works
680 Franklin Rd, SE
Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 590-8220

Protect Your Lawn with Decorative Boulders

Do you have a driveway that borders your lawn? Many homes have this configuration and it can be detrimental to the health of the lawn. Vehicles that back onto the lawn or veer off the driveway can dig in tire tracks and make it hard to maintain healthy grass. While a fencing is one option, if it is hit, it will need repair. Another solution? Use decorative boulders to border your driveway to protect your lawn and add an interesting touch to your landscaping.

Using Boulders for Your Driveway Border

If keeping tires off your lawn has been a challenge, boulders can be an excellent deterrent. They are a natural, beautiful addition to your landscaping, but can stand up to abuse. Boulders do not need to be repainted or repaired if someone hits them; the same may not be true for the offending vehicle. It can ensure that those visiting your home stay off your lawn and remain on the driveway, protecting your lawn.

To add a boulder border to your driveway, visit your local landscape supply store that offers natural stone. You want boulders that are at least 18-inches high, large enough that they cannot easily be drove over without hitting a bumper. You will want to place them no farther than five-feet apart so that vehicles cannot drive between them. Measure the length of your driveway and divide by five for the number of boulders needed for each side. Many suppliers offer delivery, making it easy to get these large rocks to your home.

Not only do boulders look lovely and protect your lawn, they require little maintenance and will last a lifetime. Visit your local landscape supplier and explore the options for making your driveway boulder border.

Posted on behalf of:
Culbreth Stone
1968 US-41
Pelham, TN 37366
(423) 930-8249

Polymer Versus Natural Sand for Pavers

Sand is an important part of any paver project. Whether you are building a patio for your backyard or a walkway to your front door, you need sand to create a solid base and to fill in the cracks between the pavers. While natural sand has been used for this purpose for many decades, another option is now available. Polymer sand can offer the same function for stabilizing pavers and may be able to outperform the natural sand for longevity.

What Is Polymer Sand?

Although there are many different types of polymer sands to choose from, the basic description is a dried, course sand that has had polymers added to it during the manufacturing process. These polymers are water-activated and create a solid mass when water is added. This makes it simple to create solid seams between pavers; just fill in the cracks, sweep away the excess, and sprinkle water on the polymer sand in the cracks. It quickly hardens and adds stability to any paving project.

The benefits of polymer sand versus natural sand is the solid filling for between the pavers. While natural sand can be washed away or allow ants or weeds to travel through it, polymer sand is solid and stays in place. It is better for deterring insects and weeds from your paved surface, making it much easier to maintain your paved area.

If you are planning a paver project, explore the options for polymer sand. It can make your paver surface last longer and easier to maintain, plus it is simple to use. Talk to your local landscape supplier to find the right polymer sand for your needs.

Posted on behalf of:
Alliance Stone
5420 Campground Rd
Cumming, GA 30040
(404) 759-0617

Uses for Natural Sand in Landscaping

Are you planning a project that will require sand? There are many landscaping and home improvement projects that use sand as a material. From creating a play area for the kids to paving a patio with natural stone, sand can be a useful material for your home projects. However, it is important to choose the right sand for your projects. Here are some of the landscaping and other home projects that may require sand and the right sand to buy for the best results.

  • Sand is perfect for helping stabilize pavers and fill the cracks between the stones. It can be poured before the pavers are lain, then swept into cracks to keep pavers in place and reduce weed growth. Granite dust is a good choice for this type of project.
  • Leveling lawns. There are types of grasses that require leveling with the use of sand. Some grasses that benefit from river sand leveling include Zoyzia, Bermuda and Centipede.
  • Sand boxes and playgrounds. For a sand box or sand for around swing sets and slides, white beach sand is preferable. You will want white sand that has been screened to remove impurities.
  • River sand can be used to help improve drainage in soils and gardens.
  • Masonry. Masonry uses sand to create mortar and cement; natural sand can have advantages to manufactured varieties due to the smooth exteriors of granules.

While manufactured sand can have its benefits for some applications, natural sand can be a wise choice for your home projects. If you need sand for a project, visit your local landscape supplier that offers natural sand options.

Posted on behalf of:
Green Brothers Earth Works
680 Franklin Rd, SE
Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 590-8220

How to Turn Your Yard into a Work of Art with Natural Stone

Your outdoor space is your place to relax, entertain and enjoy the sun. You want a place that is inviting and represents your personal style, while adding beauty and value to your home. Natural stone can be used in many ways in your outdoor living space. Not only is stone gorgeous and durable, it can create an artful space that you can enjoy for many years to come. Here are some ways to add natural stone to enhance the beauty of your yard and living space.

  • Flagstone patio. The depth and uniqueness of flagstone can make your patio come to life. You can choose irregularly shaped stone that fits together like a puzzle for a stunning paved patio, or uniform pieces for a modern look.
  • Boulder edging. Boulders are a wonderful way to separate or edge areas. Use large boulders around your patio or garden to create barriers between areas, while adding natural beauty to your yard.
  • Natural stone fire pit or fireplace. An outdoor fire source is a wonderful addition to your outdoor space for evening entertainment. Natural stone is perfect to make your fire pit or fireplace the centerpiece of your patio.
  • Natural stone steps. Slabs of natural stone are perfect for outdoor stair treads, whether you are adding a few steps into a sunken patio or up a hill on your property. Flagstone or ashlar are good choices for creating natural stone steps.

There are many ways to make your yard and patio a work of art with natural stone. Visit your local quarry to checkout the different natural stone options for your next outdoor project.

Posted on behalf of:
Culbreth Stone
1968 US-41
Pelham, TN 37366
(423) 930-8249

Difference Between Fieldstone and Flagstone

If you are considering a natural stone landscaping project, flagstones and fieldstones are likely to pop up in any research you do on the subject. Both are very popular for paving, retaining walls and for structures like fire pits. They both are durable and beautiful, but which is the best for your project? Here is a basic overview of both types of natural stone to help you determine which is the right option for your next landscaping project.

Fieldstone Basics

Simply, fieldstones are rough stones that are often found in fields or other above ground areas. Unlike many stones that are quarried, fieldstones are naturally formed, not cut from large layers of rock. These stones have broken off mountains and cliffs, many from glaciers, floods and other natural occurrences. Their beauty and shape are derived from many years of exposure to the elements.

Fieldstone is wonderful for creating unique, natural stone structures or focal points. They are irregular in shape, so they are better for rock fencing, garden ponds and fire pits, but can be used for a garden path.

Flagstone

Flagstone is a quarried stone, usually limestone or bluestone, cut into flat pavers. These stones can be cut in similar shapes or sizes, and come in a variety of colors, depending on the quarry location. Flagstones can be used for siding, fireplaces and many natural stone surfaces, but are one of the most popular options for natural stone paving. Flagstones are wonderful for patios, walkways and around your pool.

Before your next natural stone project, visit your local quarry that offers both options of natural stone. Your can view the different options available and make the best choice for your project.

Posted on behalf of:
Alliance Stone
5420 Campground Rd
Cumming, GA 30040
(404) 759-0617

Is All Sand the Same?

If you love to tackle do-it-yourself landscaping projects, you know getting the right materials is vital to obtaining the best results. The wrong grass type for your lawn can make it impossible to get the lush lawn you prefer or the incorrect fertilizer can do more harm than good. When a project calls for sand, the same is true. There are different types of sand that are best for certain applications. Knowing the difference can ensure you get the results you desire for your next project that calls for using sand.

Paving Stones

For sand to fill in around and under paving stone, you want a fine dust that will settle and compact quickly. A good choice for this project is granite dust that is easy to sweep into those cracks and will stay in place.

Leveling Lawns

When adding sand to level lawns in grass types that work best in a sandy soil, choose river sand.  Bermuda and Zoysia grasses are two lawns that require sand for the best results when leveling. Make sure to choose a well-screened river sand that will not add large chunks of gravel to your lawn.

Drainage for Soil

If adding sand to improve the drainage in your soil, river sand is best. 

Masonry Work

When adding sand for mortar when performing masonry work, a grittier white sand is a good choice. 

Sand Boxes for Play Areas

For a thick sand box for the kids, use white sand. This is also good for leveling property or landscaping areas.

Knowing the right type of sand to use is important since the consistency varies with the source. Talk to your landscape supplier before ordering sand for your project to ensure you get the right type for your project.

Posted on behalf of:
Green Brothers Earth Works
680 Franklin Rd, SE
Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 590-8220