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

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

3 Projects Made Easier with Paver Blocks

If you are attempting to improve your landscaping or outdoor area with hardscapes, you want to make it as simple as possible. Many DIY projects can go wrong, costing you more in money and time than if you hired a contractor. When it comes to hardscapes, you want a material that is easy to work with to ensure your project turns out the way you hoped. Pre-formed paver blocks are a great option for many hardscapes. Here are three projects that can be made easier with the use of pavers.

  1. Retaining walls. Building a retaining wall is not as easy as it looks. Pavers can help make it a little easier by giving you interlocking pieces that stack together perfectly. Depending on the wall and pressure, some paver retaining walls will not even need mortar.
  2. Patio. Building a new patio can be easy to do right when you use uniform pavers. In most cases, you can use the sand and sweep method to hold them in place. This means no cement or mortar and you can readjust your pavers as needed for design or repairs down the road.
  3. Raised gardens. Want to build raised flower or vegetable gardens in your yard? Paver blocks are perfect for forming square, rectangle or even circular enclosures to fill with soil for planting. For circular gardens, ask your landscape supply store for circular pavers that are curved on the edge.

When starting a new hardscape project using pavers, visit your local landscape supply for advice on purchasing the right pavers for your job. You can also pickup sand, mortar or other supplies you need, all in one stop.

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

Does Your Landscape Supplier Have Everything You Need?

Yard work and gardening can be some of the most rewarding work you can do around the home. How enjoyable that work will be is largely dependent on accessibility of the supplies you need.

A landscape supplier should be able to help you find the right sod or mulch for your landscape, and have it in stock for you. A real bonus is one that will deliver everything to your door. Landscaping supplies can be bulky, and the bigger jobs aren’t going to fit in the average SUV, so you should definitely find a supplier who delivers.

Not everything in your yard can be green and lush, sadly. Some of it has to be paved over for vehicle and foot traffic. Does your local landscape supply company also provide paving materials? What sort of materials fit your application and architectural style? Stone, brick or concrete? Are you planning to install a flagstone patio? Make sure you’ve got a good selection to choose from to complete your project, and expert help in making your selection.

Your choice of sod for the lawn is important too. The amount of traffic, sun, and water your lawn will get has a lot of influence on which kind of sod you’ll need to use on your landscape for a healthy lawn. A supplier in your area will know which works best, and have it in stock.

Find a local landscape supply company who can advise you on what materials are best for your landscape. Expert guidance in choosing the right supplies will save you time and money, and let you spend more of both enjoying and improving your outdoor paradise.

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

5 Ways to Add Beauty to Your Home with Natural Stone

Home design trends come and go, but using natural stone always adds a classic beauty to any home project. Since humans began building homes, stone has been key material due to its durability and strength. Now, natural stone is also valued for the unique beauty it can add to a home, along with its long-lasting qualities. Here are five ideas on how to add the beauty of natural stone to your home.

  1. Stone walkways. Forget boring, industrial concrete for your front walkway. Add dimension to your front walk with natural stones such as flagstones or field stones.
  2. Stunning patio. Blend your patio in with nature by creating a unique flooring made from natural stone. Choose irregular-shaped stones for a natural appearance.
  3. Fire pit or outdoor fireplace. Add beauty and warmth to your backyard with a gorgeous fire feature for those cool nights. A natural stone fire pit or fireplace is a perfect addition to your outdoor living area.
  4. Replace your siding with stone veneer. Have you always wanted to live in a stone cottage? Make your existing home into your dream home by replacing your siding with stone veneer. You will have the look of a stone cottage without the cost of stone walls.
  5. Retaining walls and stone fences. Natural stone is perfect for building retaining walls for erosion control. It can also create an aesthetically pleasing fence for a classic, country appeal.

There are so many options for using natural stone to add to the beauty of your home. Contact your local quarry to learn more about all the stone products available for our home projects.

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

What Type of Soil is Best for Your Project?

The success of any landscaping project that includes live plants most often depends on the soil used. Compare Top Soil, Bio Mix, and Flower Mix.

Know Your Soil – For Great Gardening Results

Experienced farmers and landscapers know one important thing about planting anything: the composition of the soil is paramount to success. Before you can determine the proper amount of moisture, the most compatible climate for plants or specific fertilizers, it’s essential to start with the study of your soil. There are several types of soils. Some are not ideal for gardens. With a little knowledge, it is possible to turn difficult soil situations into a productive soil medium.

Identify Your Soil

Three widely used soils are:

•            Topsoil, is a clean soil that has been sifted to remove rocks, twigs, and other debris.

•            Bio Mix, is most often used in retention ponds or ditches to filter the oils and other petroleum contaminants from streets and asphalt driveways so these contaminants do not reach the rivers and streams.

•            Flower Mix, normally utilize a composition of 50 percent top soil, 25 percent Nutra-Mulch, and another 25 percent granite sand to create a rich natural mix for your favorite flowers.

Each soil type is found in a variety of climates and growing zones. In the U.S. there are a dozen growing zones. Each zone has different composition due to regional climate. In order to determine the best soil for your project, you need to identify your growing zone.

What Type of Soil is best for planting a Young Fruit Tree?

When you purchase a young fruit tree from your local gardener, ask what type of soil is best to ensure the young fruit tree isn’t subjected to shock. Young fruit trees are already “balled” with soil needed for planting. You might need to add a top soil & peat mix to the bed where the tree will be planted.

What Type of Soil is best for planting a Flower Garden?

The type of soil best for planting a flower garden depends entirely on the species of flowers to be grown, but most do best in a flower mix. Azaleas and rhododendron, for example, prefer a more acidic soil. Roses do well in peaty soil. Discuss the soil you plan to use with an expert at the gardening center or an expert landscaper.

What Type of Soil is best for planting a Vegetable Garden?

As with a flower garden, the species of vegetables to be planted determine the type of soil. Potatoes, carrots, celery and tomatoes prefer slightly sandy soil. Asparagus, peppers, and squash do best in peaty soil.

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

Creating a Beautiful Dry Creek Bed for Drainage

If you are tired of watching a small lake form in your yard ever year, it may be time to invest in a drainage solution. One of the most cost effective and aesthetically pleasing options is a dry creek bed. Using natural stone, you can build a meandering creek bed in your yard to divert your excess moisture to a storm drain or pond. Here are some of the basics you need to know.

Start High

You want your creek bed to start where the highest point in your yard is or where you have an obvious source of water run-off. If there is a drainage pipe dumping water onto your yard that is where your creek should begin.

Plan Your Path

The beginning and the end of your creek bed should be predetermined by where the water is coming from and where it needs to go. In between, you have some creative say. A curving creek bed will look more natural than a straight line, so try to give your creek bed some curves.

Choose Your Stone

For the stones, you will want a variety of sizes to create a natural looking creek bed. For the bottom of the bed, you can use smaller river rock like river slicks or surge stone. You will want larger river stones to border your bed and boulders for curves and for hiding the drain pipe that may be the source.

A dry creek bed is a lovely way to add beauty and drainage to your landscaping. To get started creating your new creek bed, contact our local landscape supplier to find the right stones for your project.

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

What to Look for When Buying Gardening Soil

Is your front yard drab compared to the rest of the neighborhood? A garden is a simple way to liven up your yard without those tacky tiki torches and plastic flamingos. 

When starting a garden you should do a little research or consult a professional on what flowers, fruits, or vegetables grow best in your climate. Once you have made your choices, finding the right soil to grow your soon-to-be-beauties is next. Some plants grow best in soil, some in mulch, and some in mixtures of various planting materials. 

Flowers grow differently than most fruits and vegetables so if you plan on doing both, keep in mind they probably have different soil requirements. It is important to find out what works best for your plants so they receive adequate nutrients and water. Planting materials range from mulch to sand and soil to gravel, and finding the right one for your gardening masterpiece can be difficult. Flowers require lots of nutrients so using a soil with added nutrients or nutrient-absorbing properties is ideal. As for fruits and veggies, if they grow well in your climate, then they probably will grow well in your topsoil, but this is not always the case. Of course if you want to see them thrive then putting them in a soil mixture might jumpstart their growth. 

Landscape supply professionals can help point you in the right direction if you are unsure about your dirty decisions. It is also important to check if any of your plants require certain sunlight or shading and plant them accordingly. Landscaping and gardening professionals can help you pull everything together to make your garden the talk of the neighborhood!

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

Choosing the Right Sand for Your Landscaping Project

For many landscaping projects, sand can be a useful and affordable filler that is safe and natural for all environments. Whether you are building a sandbox for your kids to play in or are mixing concrete for a larger project, you want to find high-quality sand to use.  There is a difference in the sand that is available for sale in landscape supply stores, so knowing which grade or type to buy can help improve the quality of your finished project. 

River or White Sand?

The two main types of sand that are of the highest quality are river or white sand. Both are natural alternative to manufactured sand that can be carcinogenic, making it unsafe for using around your home and children. Sand is used as a filler for paving stones, in mortar, as a landscape filler and is mixed in certain soils to create a drier soil for certain plants. 

River and white sand can be bought in bulk from quality landscape supply stores, a more affordable option to buying bagged sand from some retailers of garden supplies. River sand is generally used for concrete and mortar mixing, but also is great for sandboxes, soil applications and as landscape filler. White sand is a premium, fine sand that is preferred for sandboxes, yet is still affordable when bought in bulk. 

Before beginning any landscape project that will require sand, find a local supplier that offers quality, natural sand for bulk purchases. It will enhance the result of your project and ensure that you are not adding carcinogens to your property in the form of manufactured sand.

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