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Pea Gravel Cost

Stones and rocks are used frequently in all sorts of outdoor landscaping designs. Small pieces of gravel can be the ultimate base for a basic and affordable driveway, larger rocks can help divert water, and most varieties can limit the amount of water and maintenance needed when compared to a more traditional grass lawn. One of the most common types of landscaping rocks on the market today is pea gravel. 

The Costs

  • The minimum cost of pea gravel is $30 per ton.
  • Pea gravel costs $55 per ton at maximum.
  • To install pea gravel, it costs from $220 to $365 for 200 square feet of coverage.

Understanding Pea Gravel

Just like the name suggests, pea gravel is a hard stone that resembles the size and shape of a pea. Unlike crushed stone, which is uneven and can have sharp edges, pea gravel is often quite smooth and relatively uniform in shape. This makes it a more decorative and attractive option for all kinds of landscaping projects. Those looking for specific sizes of pea gravel should note that these small stones measure between diameters of 1/4 inch and 1 inch on average. 

This landscaping material is versatile and offers a range of benefits for home and property owners:

  • Rather than pouring concrete, installing paving stones or putting down sod grass that requires extensive maintenance, pea gravel is affordable and simple as ground cover.
  • Pea gravel is beneficial in warm climates where water use may be expensive or limited because it doesn't require watering like grass does.
  • Pea gravel can help drain standing water to prevent erosion, which is a big bonus in locations that get a lot of sudden rain.
  • Used around everything from swimming pool decks to paving stones, pea gravel is a great decorative element that comes in a variety of colors and can enhance the look of just about any outdoor living space.

Various Types of Pea Gravel

Pea gravel may be the name given to small, round stones, but there is more than one type of pea gravel on the market. Along with the size variations, pea gravel can vary significantly in color. Gray may be the standard color used for most landscaping projects, but property owners can also find pea gravel in shades of blue, red or beige. Pea gravel is primarily used in landscaping, but it can also be used in aquariums. Ordinary pea gravel works fine for this purpose, but some fish owners prefer to buy specialty gravel from a pet store.

Pea Gravel for Driveways

One of the most common uses for pea gravel is for driveways to a home or even a business. Pea gravel can make a rough driveway a little smoother for cars to use, and it can also prevent cars from getting stuck in muddy areas after a heavy rain. In order for the pea gravel to be most effective, however, it needs to be installed at least six inches deep and then compacted so that car tires won't sink into it when parked or moving.

Pea Gravel for Walking Pathways

In order to clearly mark a section of a garden or a backyard as a pathway, pea gravel can be the perfect tool. Along with being incredibly practical, pea gravel walkways are very pleasing to look at and use. These walkways can also be a smart way to eliminate weed growth where people most commonly step, and they can cut down on the amount of maintenance needed in particular areas. Similarly, pea gravel can be used between paving stones that form a walkway. This makes installing the paving stones much easier, and it is a very common option leading up to the front door of a traditional home. Pea gravel walkways can be a clever way to demarcate gardening areas, and they allow individuals to walk through the rows of flowers or vegetables without worrying about stepping on anything important.

Pea Gravel for Weed Prevention

For many property owners, the primary purpose of using pea gravel is to prevent weed growth and the maintenance that comes along with it. A layer of 4 inches of pea gravel can generally eliminate weeds poking up through the surface. Using pea gravel as weed growth prevention is suitable for most landscaping projects, but it is also beneficial when used in outdoor living spaces. Tables, chairs and other outdoor furniture can go right on top of the pea gravel, and the whole flooring area will require almost zero maintenance in the future.

Pea Gravel for Playgrounds

Families with children often turn to pea gravel for playground areas. Otherwise, a rainy afternoon could turn a charming play area into a messy mud pit. Having a layer of pea gravel means that rain is drained quickly and kids can get back outside just an hour or so after the rain has passed. Because pea gravel is rounded and less edged than crushed stone, it is also safer for children to play on.

Determining How Much Pea Gravel is Needed

Once a property owner had determined that pea gravel is the best option for their landscaping or decorative project, they will need to figure out how much pea gravel is needed. For an accurate number, a pea gravel materials calculator is helpful. Homeowners will need to know the following information to calculate amounts and cost:

  • Width of the area to be covered
  • Length of the area that needs to be covered
  • Depth of the pea gravel layer that is preferred

Pea gravel is an appealing landscaping material with a number of uses in outdoor spaces. Property owners should keep in mind that pea gravel is heavy and is often purchased by the ton, so delivery and installation is a big job often requiring professional assistance.

    Last updated on Jan 21, 2016

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