When most homeowners think of landscaping they typically think of plants and greenery and lush lawns. But incorporating rocks into the landscape is another great way to create visual interest with a low-maintenance twist.
If you are considering this approach, you might be wondering how to landscape with rocks. That’s why we’ve rounded up a few ideas to consider.
Landscaping with Mulch vs. Rocks
One of the ways in which homeowners incorporate rocks into their landscape is by replacing traditional mulch with small landscaping stones or pebbles in areas such as plant beds, along fences, or even around pools or ponds. As with anything, there are pros and cons to this approach. The biggest factor to consider will be what type of plant material (if any) you are installing.
The fact is, some plant material is going to perform better in mulch. For one, as natural mulch breaks down, it adds nutrients that plants need to thrive. Some research has also shown that mulch can nearly double how fast trees and plants will grow.
However, many plants—particularly those that are native to the area—can perform just fine in rock, even though it doesn’t provide any aid to soil health (or plant growth). Stone is also low maintenance (you almost never need to replace rocks, unlike mulch) and is the lower cost option because it’s a one-time expense. In areas around pools or ponds, rock is also ideal because it won’t be blown around or tracked into the water.
Landscaping with Boulders
When it comes to how to landscape with rocks, incorporating larger rocks—such as boulders—is another great way to add visual interest to your property. Boulders do not need to be watered, trimmed, or cared for in any way also making them a very low-maintenance landscape option that still looks great.
Of course, it’s not as simple as just plunking a big boulder down in the middle of your property. Large rocks must still be incorporated into the landscape in a meaningful (almost artistic) fashion. This might include strategic placement in a plant bed to use up space without a lot of plant material that needs care.
It could also mean using large stones to build a rock wall somewhere on your property. This may even double in purpose as a retaining wall if you’re dealing with erosion or runoff, making it both functional and aesthetic.
How Much are Landscaping Rocks?
The cost of landscaping rocks can really run the gamut. The exact rock that you choose to use will be the biggest variable in the cost as it will depend upon how easy the stone is to acquire. It is hard to post a cost due to the variation of different rock, availability and add-on costs. Are they being delivered or installed. If you are considering using landscape rocks, consult a professional for a custom quote.
However, there’s no question that rocks can be a cost-effective choice—particularly in the long run. Unlike plant material or mulch, it never needs to be replaced. It also won’t need to be cared for and maintained. That means it can help you reduce ongoing landscape maintenance costs.
Working with a Pro
If you’re trying to figure out how much landscaping rock do I need?…or, how can I use landscaping rocks on my property?…or the answers to any other questions…then you might want to consider working with a professional. In order to get the most out of your investment in landscaping rocks, you want to be sure that they are installed well on your property the first time around. This will help deliver the most possible value and give you a low-maintenance and cost-effective finished product that looks fantastic.