Landscape Materials For Weed Control

There are several landscape materials which can help control the growth of weeds in your gardens and planting areas in your yard. Instead of trying to use chemicals to kill or inhibit the growth of weeds, landscape materials like fabric, mulch and gravel can stop weeds while offering other benefits. However, choosing the right material is important for the health of your plants, as well as for aesthetic appeal. 

Landscape Fabric

While landscape fabric is useful for keeping some weeds at bay, it is usually not used alone. This fabric can be put under soil, mulch or gravel to give additional protection from weeds. It also does not add any aesthetic value beyond keeping weed growth to a minimum. 

Tree Mulch

Mulch is great for gardens, trees, shrubs and planting areas. There are several varieties of tree mulch which offer protection from weed growth while adding an organic element to your planting soil and a naturally beautiful look. Tree mulch will breakdown over time, contributing the top soil in your planting areas. It also is perfect for retaining moisture in the ground, often used to protect tree roots and promote healthy growth. 


Gravel can be used as mulch as well, controlling weed growth while adding aesthetically to your landscape design. However, gravel will not enhance the soil like organic mulches, so it is best used in areas other than gardens or planting areas. Gravel is great for pathways, rock gardens and driveways to keep weeds under control. 

If you are not sure which material will be best to control weeds in your landscaping, talk to your local landscape supplier. They can discuss which materials will work best to add beauty to your home while keeping those nasty weeds at bay. 

Posted on behalf of Clayton Hulen, Green Brothers Earth Works


Adding A Beautiful Garden Path To Your Yard

A garden path can protect your lawn from being trampled while adding dimension and beauty to your yard. Armed with a shovel, rake, edging and some gravel, your landscaping professional can make a pretty garden path in relatively short order that will last for years. A quick conversation with a landscaper, and you can get started on your garden path right away. 

Designing Your Garden Path

Before you head to the store, you need to know how much gravel you will need for your pathway. Map out where your path will start and end, measuring for length. Most pathways should be at least 18 inches wide for a single-person walk. To determine how much area you will need to cover with gravel, multiply the total length by the width of the path. This will give you the area you need. 

Working with your landscaping professional, together you can choose the type of gravel you want to use for the project. Pea gravel is a common choice, and it is fairly inexpensive. You can also use 1/4” minus or decomposed granite as well. You will need enough gravel to cover your total area at least 3 inches deep. Through your landscaper, you’ll also need to purchase edging for your path to keep your gravel in place and possibly some landscape fabric to keep weeds at bay. 

To build your path, the landscaping professional will start by digging down about 3-6 inches for your path. Once complete, then he or she will place your landscape fabric and edging before filling the path with gravel. Last but not least, the gravel will be smoothed and shaped in order to complete your gravel garden path. In just a day, you’ll have a beautiful garden path that will improve your lawn and be used for many years to come!

Posted on behalf of Clayton Hulen, Green Brothers Earth Works



Using Quality Landscaping Materials

Using top quality materials for your landscaping projects can make all the difference between an amateur and professional result. Quality materials will transform the exterior of your home into somewhere that you want to spend as much of your time as possible and will leave friends and family impressed time and time again. Whether you want to update your existing landscape design or give your home a complete transformation, nothing will provide a greater impact than using  high quality stone, gravel, mulch and other landscaping materials to give a great design a great execution. 

Using quality stone and gravel for built up areas such as an outdoor kitchen, to edge a swimming pool or for steps can be visually stunning. Using  top quality for less obvious materials such as soil and mulch can provide you with benefits that go further than the visual effects. These kinds of materials are required to act as a kind of base or foundation for the rest of your landscaping work. Using only the best quality landscaping materials can help to prolong the life of your landcape features and keep everything looking great for years. Going for cheaper versions of these items may be appealing to your wallet at first but you will gradually need to replace things and using cheap, lesser quality materials will cost you in the long run. 

Researching types of landscapng materials that are going to work best in your home has never been easier thanks to the use of the Internet. Most landscape supply companies now have their own websites that not only show you what they have to offer but also provide tips and advice on designing and carrying out your own landscaping project.

Using Gravel For Beautiful Walkways

Walkways through yards often are an afterthought, but really they can tie the whole look of the landscape together. Using gravel is an inexpensive and versatile choice for walkways that can add beauty as well as function. Since gravel can be easily shaped into curves or straight lines, you have many different options when designing your walkways. 

There a few choices to be made before you buy your supplies. You will need to decide the width of your walkways, the design of the path and what type of gravel and edging you will be using. 

–          Width. In general, walkways are between 18” and 48,” going from a very narrow path to a 2-person abreast walkway. Depending on how functional you want your walkway to be and how large your yard is will help you determine the width. 

–          Design. For formal gardens or functional walkways, straight lines are usually used. Informal or casual gardens often lean towards curved paths that beckon guests to meander through the yard. 

–          Gravel and edging. Decorative gravel comes in many colors and types. A nice choice for walkways is a pea or deco pebble that is small and light colored. To keep the gravel in place you will need edging. For straight lines, wood or pavers can work well. For curved paths, shaped cobblestones or even cement curbing can be used. 

Adding gravel walkways through your yard is functionality at its best. The paths seem to bring the landscaping together and give it purpose, while keeping feet off your hard earned grass and plants. Also, by using gravel, you can easily change the design of your walkways in the future as your landscaping changes.

Choosing Between Gravel and Mulch

Gravel and mulch are two popular landscaping materials for covering bare ground, lining gardens and flower beds, and protecting plants.  Each has advantages and disadvantages, and the best one for you project depends on your needs and the look you are trying to achieve.

Mulch is chopped or ground up woody material such as pine bark or cypress while gravel consists of either small, naturally smooth pebbles or crushed rock.  Both gravel and mulch are available in a wide variety of sizes, colors and textures to achieve whatever look you desire.

Gravel and mulch are both excellent choices for ground cover.  They help control erosion, conserve moisture, inhibit weed growth, enhance the visual appeal of your landscaping, protect your shoes and clothes from mud and dirt, and help insulate the ground.

One of the primary advantages of mulch is that it decomposes and adds nutrients and increases the depth of the topsoil.  This makes mulch particularly suited for flowerbeds or any area where a rich layer of topsoil is important.

However, because it decomposes, Mulch often starts to look tired after six months and new mulch must be put down every year to replace the decomposed mulch.  After the first few years, the annual layer of mulch does not have to be as thick as the original layer.

If you do not want to have to mulch every year, gravel may be an excellent alternative.  Gravel does not decompose so it does not add to the topsoil, but it also does not have to be replaced every year.  Gravel has an almost indefinite lifespan and always looks grea