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Landscape Gravel Prices

Landscape gravel has many uses and comes in a variety of sizes and colors to suit a property owner's needs. The gravel may consist of crushed stone or even lava rock and can last for an indefinite period of time. Its long-lasting nature makes it an economical choice for gardeners, landscapers and property owners who want the advantages of an attractive landscape without the hassle of having to replace the material on a regular basis.

Landscape Gravel

  • The average cost for crushed rock gravel or lava rock is $640 for 32 square feet of gravel.
  • The minimum cost that property owners pay for crushed rock gravel or lava rock is $140, which covers 7 square feet of gravel.
  • The maximum cost for crushed rock gravel or lava rock is approximately $1,150 for 70 square feet of gravel.
  • The average cost for 32 square feet of pea gravel or river rock is $700.
  • The minimum cost that property owners pay for pea gravel or river rock is $175, which covers about 7 square feet.
  • The most that property owners pay for pea gravel or river rock is $1,400, which covers the cost of 70 square feet of gravel.

Benefits of Landscape Gravel

Landscaping gravel is a low-maintenance addition to a pathway, garden or space around a water fixture or other permanent landscape decoration. The gravel can also be placed on top of other types of mulch. Water can infiltrate through the small pieces of gravel so that no ponding or pooling of water takes place. The landscape gravel also halts or prevents the growth of weeds. When placed near a pond or another water feature, landscape gravel creates an authentic and aesthetically pleasing finished look.

Types of Landscape Gravel

  • Pebbles are the smallest type of landscape gravel. Some landscapers refer to it as pea gravel, and it comes in polished and unpolished varieties and in many shades. Pebbles are generally pieces around 0.5 inches in diameter.
  • Crushed rock is a medium size of gravel usually measuring around 1.5 inches in diameter. Typically gray in color, this material is sometimes considered to be man-made.
  • Cubed quartz, usually white in color, is another type of landscape gravel which is typically used for decorative purposes.
  • Lava rock is red or reddish brown in color and comes in pieces around 2 inches in diameter. It is lighter in weight than other types of rock and has an abrasive surface.
  • River rock is a highly polished type of gravel and comes in pieces of varying shades that are 2 inches or larger in diameter.
  • Less commonly, small shells may be used as landscape gravel. The shells are usually 1 inch or smaller in diameter and come in a variety of natural shades such as white, yellow, tan and brown.

Where Landscape Gravel Is Used

Pebbles are often used around flower beds to add visual interest and halt or prevent the growth of weeds. Some gardeners even place this type of landscape gravel into the bottom of planters for improved drainage of container plants. Crushed rock may be used as a material for driveways and paths. When the rocks have been pushed too deeply into the soil to provide a solid surface, property owners can simply add another layer of the gravel on top of what was already there. Lava rock, crushed rock that has been colored and shells are often used in place of or in addition to traditional mulch. They keep out the weeds and add color and interest around bushes and flower beds. They may also be used to line a path. River rocks are usually placed around or within water features to improve drainage, act as a path and protect nearby vegetation.

How to Choose the Best Landscaping Gravel

The most important factor in choosing landscaping gravel is where the gravel will be placed. For endurance and strength in heavy use areas such as driveways, crushed rock is a wise choice. For paths that people and pets may traverse, pebbles or river rocks are more gentle on the feet. Some property owners enjoy using two kinds of gravel, such as using larger river rocks along the border of a pond and laying a concentric ring of smaller pebbles around them.

Tips for Maintenance When Using Landscape Gravel

Because landscape gravel does not break down like organic mulch does, any nearby plants may benefit from the addition of liquid fertilizer. Heavy rains or frequent freeze and thaw cycles may cause smaller-sized gravel to shift. Lawn mowers should not be driven across landscape gravel as the mower may throw pieces of gravel into the air and cause injury. The gravel can be repositioned where it belongs by using a garden rake with metal tines.

Considerations for Installing Landscaping Gravel

Most landscape gravel delivery companies will simply unload the gravel into a large pile and leave it up to the home or property owner to put the gravel where it is needed. Home and property owners who prefer to have a landscaper or company employee place the gravel will pay additional fees for this service. Landscape gravel is heavy and may be time consuming to place. If a large quantity of landscape gravel is needed for a property, heavy equipment may need to be brought in; this sort of equipment may cause damage to sod and other landscaping features, so property owners should exercise caution. Landscape gravel should be placed on a level surface; otherwise, heavy rains may wash the gravel away from the area where the property owner wants it to be. If a path or patio of gravel is desired, significant preparation of the soil is needed in order to ensure an aesthetically pleasing finished look and a safe, level area for walking upon.

Last updated on Aug 8, 2014

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