Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A Low Maintenance Garden With Decorative Gravel

A Low Maintenance Garden With Decorative Gravel
By David A Robinson

Creating a low maintenance garden with decorative gravel is easy to do. Gravel is available in a dizzying array of colours and sizes that can fit into almost anyone's garden plans. Gravel is quite inexpensive and easy to use. It requires a minimum of maintenance and always looks great.

Decorative gravel can be bought in colours ranging from gold to white, black to red, cream to brown, and purple to green, any shade of grey, and practically any other colour in between. You can get small gravel sizes of 8 millimetres through to large sizes of 75 millimetres. This article offers you five different ways to have a low maintenance garden with decorative gravel.

1. Use gravel around plants and flowers. This will add visual appeal to your flower beds. You can choose decorative gravel in a colour that enhances and contrasts the colour of each group of flowers or plants.

Gravel around flowers doesn't just look good. It will help to avoid soil erosion as well as helping to control the weeds. Gravel around plants and flowers will also help to retain the moisture in the soil, which is very useful on a hot day in summer.

2. The edges of ponds and pools can greatly benefit from decorative gravel. Don't fall into the usual trap of making it all evenly ringed around the pool or pond. That looks unnatural. Vary the area amounts in places making it a more random layering. Use different colours and sizes to vary it even more, and possibly even include pebbles or sand, as well as larger rocks and stones.

3. A waterfall area can be truly enhanced through the use of decorative gravel. It needs to be used in conjunction with natural looking rocks and stones. The gravel can be used to fill in areas between the larger items giving the whole effect a much more rounded-off appearance.

4. Perhaps the most obvious use of decorative gravel is in a main path through your garden. For a path you are probably best to choose one colour and texture and stick to it, though using patterns or mosaics is quite possible too. A path is likely to take a lot of gravel to fill. As a rough guide, expect to need around one tonne of gravel for each five metres of path that's one metre wide and 100 millimetres in depth.

5. A large area of lawn with nothing to break up the monotony is not making the best use of your garden. Lawns need regular mowing. For the best low maintenance lawn, break the area up by creating winding decorative gravel walkways through it. These needn't be too wide, just enough for someone to walk over. You can be very creative here for a most pleasing effect using different colours and patterns.

Having a low maintenance garden with decorative gravel makes sense from so many perspectives. It will look great with just a minimum of planning and thought. There isn't very much work involved in creating it. It is fairly inexpensive, and you can cut down the regular maintenance work required by half if you do it properly. That has to be worth considering.

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