May 25, 2017

How To Use Boulders In Your Landscape

Most of us don’t think of using boulders unless we’re building a retaining wall to control erosion, or creating a boundary around a pool or other area.

But boulders aren’t just utilitarian. They’re also striking, attractive additions to your landscape.

If you’re a gardener, use boulders to build flowerbeds, or simply as focal points in your landscape. Their natural shapes and colors blend beautifully with bright blossoms, ornamental grasses, shrubs, trees, and foliage plants.

Arrange them to make a “pocket garden,” which is a small, level planting spot, or to form a terrace, a series of flat steps for planting fruit trees, roses, bulbs, or other ornamentals.

If you’re already using landscape timbers or railroad ties in your landscape, it’s a good idea to replace them with boulders when the time comes. Wood can rot, causing timber walls to become unstable and even dangerous, if they fail. Some timbers also contain arsenic, which can leach into your soil to unsafe levels. Railroad ties may leach creosote into the ground. Boulders are natural, environmentally friendly alternatives.

Boulders lend themselves to all kinds of theme gardens, too. Combine them with red pebbles or gravel and plant cacti for a Southwestern theme. Prefer a rock garden? Sink several boulders slightly into the ground, fill the area between them with good quality planting soil, and fill in with mosses, ferns, and other low-maintenance plants for an Alpine garden.

To create a Zen garden, mark off a spot in your yard, and fill it with small pebbles, gravel, or sand. Add one or more boulders as focal points, and hardscaping elements such as a bench. Dwarf trees and plants are also options. Use a rake to create designs in your gravel or sand, and you’ve got an ideal spot for meditation and relaxation.

Remember, too, that boulders can give your landscaping a sense of scale. They set off prized trees, shrubs, and other plantings.

Want to make your home easier for visitors to find? A handsome boulder etched with your house number, and placed at the end of your driveway, will help. If you prefer, plaques attached to the boulder are another way to display your address.

Come in and visit us at Vining Stone, and see all the top-quality landscaping products we offer. Our employees take pride in giving you top-notch customer service, and we work hard to match your needs with the best materials. Give us a call at 770-252-6336, or stop by and see us at 211 Stewart Road in Sharpsburg. From boulders to pebbles, we’ve got you covered!