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Landscape Rock Cost Guide

Get free estimates from local Landscaping contractors.

A luscious green yard can only take your home design so far. To amplify their home exteriors and add that immediate wow factor, many homeowners are adding landscaping rocks all around their homes. Whether as a walkway, landscape edge or just a small landscape feature, these rocks are surely turning heads.

See the average landscaping rock prices and then, connect with a local landscaper to help with your next exterior project.

Table of Contents

  1. Landscaping Rock Prices
  2. Landscape Rock Price Factors
  3. Types Of Landscaping Rocks
  4. Landscaping Rock Uses & Colors
  5. Landscape Rock Prices Vs. Alternatives
  6. Landscaping Rock Calculator
  7. Landscape Rock Advantages
  8. Landscape Rock Disadvantages
  9. Landscaping Rock Installation
  10. Find Landscapers

Landscaping Rock Prices

When you head to the nearest department store, you’ll notice that Landscape rock manufacturers charge by the pound, ton or cubic yard. As such, expect the average landscape rock prices below:

Landscape Rock Type

Minimum Cost

Maximum Cost

Decomposed Granite

$1/bag

$4/bag

Crushed Granite

$50/cubic yard

$70/cubic yard

Pea Gravel

$2/bag

$3/bag

River Rocks

$0.05/pound

$0.35/pound

Mexican Beach Pebbles

$20/bag

$30/bag

To simply the math, please see the conversion calculator or refer to the formulas below: 

  • Square Feet Multiplied By Depth = 1 Cubic Foot
  • Cubic Feet Divided By 27 = 1 Cubic Yard
  • Cubic Yards Multiplied By 1.35 = 1 Ton

Landscaping Rock Prices

Landscape Rock Price Factors

Despite the rock prices above, there are certain factors that will affect your landscape rock installation cost. Keep all in mind before you purchase decorative rocks for your yard. 

  1. Type: As you already saw, certain landscape rocks cost more than others. In fact, Mexican beach pebbles is 20 times more than decomposed granite. Therefore, the type of landscape rock you choose will drastically affect the total landscaping cost.
  2. Rock Sizes: All landscape rocks previously mentioned range in size from 0.25” in diameter to 4” in diameter. Larger rocks cost more, but they can cover more ground. Nonetheless, they factor into your landscaping rock price.
  3. Project: You can use decorative rocks for a wide array of projects, some bigger than others. We will jump into specifics later, but you can use landscape rocks for walkways, driveways or playgrounds. Clearly, a driveway project requires more materials than a walkway. Therefore, expect higher costs for larger projects.
  4. Delivery: Most homeowners use landscape rocks for a small landscaping project, a walkway or other minor landscape feature. As such, you won’t need more than a few bags. However, if you’re taking on a bigger project, you may need professional delivery, driving up your total cost.
  5. Location: Certain regions have more pea gravel and others have more granite. In addition, some do not carry Mexican beach pebbles. In addition to delivery, the farther your material has to travel, the higher your landscaping rock price will be.
  6. Installation: More often than not, homeowners install landscape rocks on their own. But, some prefer the professional touch and reach out to local landscapers.
  7. Border: Smaller rocks will require some type of edging to ensure these decorative pieces don’t float away when it rains. The costs are minimal, but expect to pay another $100 to $200 for landscape edging.
  8. Color: All landscape rocks come in various colors and some cost more than others. Standard is gray. Anything else will cost more.

Types Of Landscaping Rocks

We understand that rock prices play a key role in your decision, but costs are only one slice of the pie. There are pros, cons and other specifics you need to know before choosing the right type of landscape rock.

Decomposed Granite 

At first glance, decomposed granite isn't always recognizable as stone at all. It tends to be a red or even tan color that gets packed down quite easily and may look more like dirt. However, it offers all of the benefits of landscape rocks in a small size. One major advantage of decomposed granite is that it can be used in the place of concrete or asphalt for a driveway. Like most types of landscape rock, decomposed granite is sold by the bag or by the cubic yard, which is enough to fill the back of an average pick-up truck.

Crushed Granite Gravel 

In many ways, crushed granite gravel is similar to decomposed granite, but the former variety tends to be chunkier and larger overall. It can still be compacted to make a beautiful pathway, but crushed granite gravel looks slightly more upscale. The colors are similar, and the gravel is available in varying shades of red and beige. Generally, crushed granite gravel is more expensive than its decomposed alternative.

Cost Factors Of Landscaping Rocks

Pea Gravel

Next in size is pea gravel. Just as the name implies, pea gravel is a type of landscape rock that is roughly the size of a green pea, or 0.5” in diameter. Pea gravel tends to be too large for driveways, and it may sink over time if cars are driving over or parked on it. However, it works beautifully for pathways or as a patio surface in an outdoor living space. Pea gravel comes in a variety of colors to match most landscape designs and themes.

River Rocks 

The name river rocks implies that this landscape stone can be used in connection with water and that is absolutely true. River rocks are often used in landscaping when water needs to be drained in a particular location to avoid flooding. They may also be used to reduce maintenance in a certain area of the property, or they could be features that draw in the eye and create a contrast to green grass or shrubs.

Mexican Beach Pebbles 

One of the most expensive types of landscape rocks is Mexican beach pebbles. These rocks are very smooth and look almost polished, as if they had just been picked up from a tropical coastline. They look stunning as pathways or next to pools.

Landscaping Rock Uses & Colors

You can use landscape rocks all over your home exterior. Whether it acts as a border around your home, a pathway, a driveway or pool border, landscape rocks are one of the most versatile options out there. In fact, homeowners are using decorative rocks for: 

  1. Pathways
  2. Walkways
  3. Patios
  4. Playgrounds
  5. Driveways
  6. Water Features
  7. Mulch Replacement
  8. Grass Replacement
  9. Sod Replacement
  10. Flood Prevention
  11. Rock Fillings
  12. Dry Creek Beds
  13. Plant Borders
  14. Garden Borders
  15. Pool Borders
  16. Boulder Borders

Functionality is only part of the pie. Another key is the design. Luckily, you don’t have to sacrifice one for the other with landscape rocks. With its variety of colors, homeowners across the country can find landscaping rocks perfect for their home exteriors. Your options are:

  1. Gray
  2. Brown
  3. White
  4. Blue
  5. Beige
  6. Red
  7. Tan
  8. Gold 

Clearly, you have plenty of options with any type of landscape rock.

Types Of Landscaping Rocks

Landscape Rock Prices Vs. Alternatives

Before you make your final decision, you have to know all your options. Luckily, ImproveNet has researched the average prices for a wide array of landscaping and driveway/pathway alternatives.

Landscaping 

Material

Minimum Cost

Maximum Cost

Crushed Stones

$27/ton

$64/ton

Dry Stack Stones

$5/sf

$60/sf

Stone Steps

$300/tone

$1,050/ton

Turf

$5/sf

$14/sf

Sod

$0.30/sf

$0.75/sf

Grass Pavers

$1/sf

$10/sf

Landscape Timbers

$3/lf

$9/lf

Landscape Fabric

$31

$112

Landscape Boulders

$100/ton

$600/ton

Landscape Gravel

$18/sf

$25/sf

River Stones

$100/ton

$800/ton

Driveways & Pathways

Material

Minimum Cost

Maximum Cost

Asphalt Pavers

$3/sf

$4/sf

Driveway Pavers

$3/sf

$10/sf

Flagstone Pavers

$8/sf

$20/sf

Brick Pavers

$9/sf

$15/sf

Granite Pavers

$9/sf

$15/sf

Concrete Driveways

$4/sf

$15/sf

Brick Driveways

$5/sf

$50/sf

Cement Walkways

$6/sf

$12/sf

Brick Walkways

$8/sf

$18/sf

Stone Walkways

$11/sf

$18/sf

 Landscape Rock Advantages

Landscaping Rock Calculator

With so many manufacturers and home department stores charging different prices per ton, square foot or bag, it’s hard to know how much you need to buy. Thanks to our friends at Westurf, their handy landscaping rock calculator simplifies this dilemma. 

One Ton of Rock Covers:                       

  • 240 square feet or 1” deep
  • 120 square feet or 2” deep
  • 80 square feet or 3” deep
  • 60 square feet or 4” deep
  • 50 square feet or 5” deep
  • 40 square feet or 6” deep
  • 20 square feet or 12” deep

One Cubic Yard of Rock Covers:

  • 300 square feet or 1” deep
  • 150 square feet or 2” deep
  • 100 square feet or 3” deep
  • 75 square feet or 4” deep
  • 50 square feet or 6” deep
  • 25 square feet or 12” deep

Landscape Rock Advantages

We’ve mentioned plenty of pros to all decorative rocks, but there are a few more benefits that prove they’re worth the expense. While planting grass seeds in the ground might be more affordable than having rocks delivered and installed around your property, the final result of the latter will certainly be more attractive.

For those who live in dry climates, landscape rocks are also advantageous because they don't require any watering. Not watering saves you time, but it’s also be an eco-friendly and affordable option in locations where water use is limited or expensive. Finally, landscape rocks can cut down on lawn maintenance costs and time. Whether they’re used for decorative purposes or to stop weeds from growing up, you’ll definitely appreciate how little care your landscape actually needs with landscape rocks.

Landscaping Rock Installation

Landscape Rock Disadvantages

All those benefits don’t come without a few drawbacks. First, unlike grass, landscape rocks absorb heat. Therefore, on a hot summer day, you may not be able to walk along your walkway with bare feet. Furthermore, some pea gravel can even heat up your home if it’s located near the doors.

Also, you have to be very careful trimming or mowing your lawns around landscape rock. If you accidently go over any rocks, you could send them flying into air. As expected, it will surely hurt someone if it makes contact.

Finally, landscape rocks are not really recommended for driveways, as the stones will easily move once you drive over them a few times. The same can be said for soil rocks as well. You have to make sure they stay in place and not seep into the soil. If they do, you won’t be able to replant the area going forward.

Landscaping Rock Installation

While some homeowners are happy to tackle buying and installing landscape rocks on their own, the job is a big one and may end up being harder than you think. In many cases, hiring a landscape professional to deliver and install the landscape rock will be worth the additional expense. The exact price of the installation will depend on all cost factors mentioned above.

Find Landscapers

If you want to drastically update your home exterior, landscape rocks are a terrific and trendy option sweeping the country. With a relatively low material cost, these decorative pieces are calling your name.

If you want to install landscape rocks in your yard or driveway, let us help you get in touch with up to four landscaping pros in your area.

Get free estimates from local landscaping contractors

Last updated on Apr 28, 2017

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