How to use rock and stone in your landscape

So you want to use rock and stone in your landscape. You might be wondering…

  • WHAT are ways to use stone?
  • WHICH types of stone should we use in this region?
  • WHY should we use stone?
  • WHERE should we use stone?
  • WHO is going to it?

Function and Beauty – that’s always the goal with our landscaping. Sometimes you have to settle for one of the two (function OR beauty), but we always want to shoot for both if possible.

Let’s take a look at a few of our favorite ways to incorporate stone at Top Choice Lawn Care.

Patios and Seating Areas

Example 1: My backyard flagstone patio. We filled this space with Adirondack chairs and a nice, moveable metal fire pit.

  • What: Flagstone patio with granite fill and a drainage box.
  • Why: I wanted another gathering place for book clubs, Bible studies, S’mores and more.
  • Where: This was a useless part of the yard that was too shaded to grow turf.

Additional note: you can see at the bottom there is a box drain. This was an area that pooled water. The drain goes under the patio into the greenbelt behind the house.

Example 2: Front yard seating area.

  • What: Flagstone patio with pea gravel fill and planting surrounding.
  • Why: Customer wanted a beautiful area to sit in their front yard. They put a nice bench in the center of the circle. It turned a sparse turf area into an eye-catching functional focal point in the yard.
  • Where: Once again, this is a heavily shaded area with turf that struggled.

Xeriscape and Rock Beds

Example 1: Xeric bed around a pool.

  • What: Texas black gravel with xeric plants and a limestone chop block edging.
  • Why: Hyper water efficient and beautiful.
  • Where: Next to the pool 🙂

Example 2: Granite path with limestone lueders.

  • What: Decomposed granite with sawn limestone lueders along the side yard.
  • Why: Xeric solution to a heavy traffic area.
  • Where: side/backyard pathway.

Paths and Walkways

Example 1: Front yard driveway and walkway extension. Additionally a river rock strip between the driveway and street.

  • What: Texas Black Gravel (Texas Star / Texas Basalt / Lots of names) with sawed limestone lueders.
  • Why: Customer wanted a beautiful and functional formal walkway up to the house. The area between the sidewalk and street was stressed due to heat radiating from the concrete.
  • Where: Self-explanatory.

Example 2: My daughter calls this her “fairy walkway”.

  • What: Limestone walkway
  • Why: We wanted a walkway from the front entrance of the house to the side yard.
  • Where: Front foundation bed around the side of the house.

Example 3: Side yard walkway.

  • What: Brazos river rock with a limestone flagstone walkway.
  • Why: This area had shade and traffic issues so the grass was struggling.
  • Where: Sideyard.

Where grass won’t grow: mud, heat radiation and deep shade solution

Example 1: Between sidewalk and street.

  • What: Brazos rover rock, steel edging, and Texas Black Gravel
  • Why: The area between the sidewalk and street often struggles to hold healthy grass because of the heat radiating off the concrete.
  • Where: Between the sidewalk and street.

Example 2: Side yard

  • What: Colorado river rock.
  • Why: Areas with deep shade can’t grow grass and turn into a muddy mess.
  • Where: Side yard.

Additional Note: If a house is on a slope, often the side yard has drainage and erosion issues. Rock and stone slow water, eliminating erosion issues.

Who’s ready to rock?

Lots of rock and stone projects are great for a weekend DIY. You can get gravel, rocks, and stones for pick up or delivery from a few great local stone suppliers in Austin.

If you’ve got a bigger project (or just want that professional touch), our experienced crews are happy to do the heavy lifting to get your new landscape just right.

Curious about which types of rock we use? You can check out our list of native landscaping products here.

Of course, rock and stone often go hand in hand with beds, plants, and other landscaping. We can help with a lot more projects if you are looking for any of the following:

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