An important part of every landscape is the way that we take people from one point to another. If a concept in design is that the gardener should purposely lead visitors through the garden, then paths are a key tool in accomplishing this task.

They not only serve a utilitarian role but they are also part of the overall aesthetics of your landscape. Materials used should reflect the dominant design concept, i.e. formal or informal, of the rest of your garden. The major types of materials used for garden paths and patios  would include:

  1. Bricks - These are manufactured blocks of various forms of clay materials. They usually have squared off corners and may be baked to increase their hardness.

  2. Concrete or Blacktop - These are commonly used in sidewalks and at many larger horticultural gardens.

  3. Gravel - Commonly used in English style gardens, gravel provides a soft feeling along with the characteristic sound as feet travel through.

  4. Mulch - Wood chips and other mulch type materials may be used in informal gardens and especially in woodland situations.

  5. Pavers - These are differentiated from bricks in that they are usually larger in width and not as thick. Commonly available sizes are 12 inches by 12 inches and 2 inches thick.

  6. Stones - These are similar to pavers but are actually made directly from stone such as shale or sandstone. They have irregular dimensions and must be carefully fitted together.

  7. Turf - Nice, green grass is, perhaps, the most common type of garden path.

  8. Wood - Slatted planks or other wood may also be used for path materials.

Visit our image galleries for pictures of a wide array of different hardscape features for the landscape. Our intent is to give you some ideas about the variety of options available in each of the categories we cover. Some are the standard type while others may be unique or unusual. There will be features you might want to copy and others that you may want to avoid. Good luck!



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