Laying a gravel path in your garden

There is any number of ways to pimp the garden. One, which has the added advantage of adding an extra security layer, is the gravel path. The security comes from the noise of footfall. A gravel path is also relatively easy to lay and fairly economical.

Mark out the line of the path with sand or a line and cut away any turf and topsoil to a depth of approximately 100-150mm (4-6 inches). Tamp the soil down firmly and fix any soft edges with 100-150mm deep timber battens, pegged at regular intervals. A curved path will need flexible edging, pegged into place to retain turf or flower beds.

Cast concrete is another possible edging, being more decorative and durable, though care must be taken when laying to keep levels even.

Now fill the bottom third with a hardcore base of loose stone or coarse gravel, topped with a layer of sand and a coarse gravel that needs tamping flat. At this juncture, apply weed killer from a watering can fitted with a rose to prevent washing the base away.

Finally, spread the gravel of choice – pea, beach pebble, green basalt or chippings of flint, granite, and stone – over the base before raking, rolling, and smoothing to produce an even, firm path with a level just below the top of the edging. Maintain the path with regular applications of weed killer, raking and rolling, and it will look good for years.

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