Jump to content

Nominations for Tractor of the Month
Garden Tractors and Parts on eBay



Photo
- - - - -

Questions about rock/gravel to replace grass


  • Please log in to reply
6 replies to this topic

#1 Tobal OFFLINE  

Tobal

    Member

  • Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Member No: 4710
  • 3 Thanks
  • 64 posts
  • Location: Amarillo Texas

Posted August 18, 2011 - 11:35 PM

house.JPG

I have an area (hilighted area) that is between the street and my sidewalk it's around 15 to 18 ft wide and 180 ft long. I'd like to take the grass out and replace it with some kind of rock, and add some low maintainence plants that don't need to be watered and can grow in the rock. I'll also have some old horse drawn implements in this area. I'm thinking I put these on a platform of cross ties.

My questions are how much should I excavate? 6 inches? I'll probably have to have that done. I can use some of the dirt in my back yard to level where my shop is going. Is it expensive to have dirt excavated? Then do i need to put down a lawn fabric before the rock? I can spread the rock myself so all i need them to do is drop it off.

Water runs down the sidewalk with a stroong current / if we ever get hard rains. I've seen rock washed away before. Is that an oddity or does it depend on the rock you choose?

Thanks for any thoughts or input

#2 KennyP ONLINE  

KennyP

    FORDoholic

  • Super Moderator
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 2253
  • 28,419 Thanks
  • 39,669 posts
  • Location: Collinsville, Oklahoma

Posted August 19, 2011 - 04:19 AM

I think I would talk to someone with landscaping experience on this. You have lots of trees in that area and you don't want to disturb their root system too much, it could kill them. Maybe someone here has that experience.

#3 Tobal OFFLINE  

Tobal

    Member

  • Member
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Member No: 4710
  • 3 Thanks
  • 64 posts
  • Location: Amarillo Texas

Posted August 20, 2011 - 02:45 PM

Yea I'm not opposed to having some kind of foliage around the trees if needed. These are the things I'd like to know.

#4 KennyP ONLINE  

KennyP

    FORDoholic

  • Super Moderator
  • Staff
  • -GTt Supporter-
  • Contributor
  • Member No: 2253
  • 28,419 Thanks
  • 39,669 posts
  • Location: Collinsville, Oklahoma

Posted August 20, 2011 - 07:54 PM

Might be easier to talk to a local landscaping/nursery company. They should be able to tell you about the trees and root system.

#5 mikebramel OFFLINE  

mikebramel

    Ron Paul

  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 82
  • 176 Thanks
  • 1,009 posts
  • Location: Milwaukee

Posted August 20, 2011 - 10:16 PM

Posted Image
  • DB1 said thank you

#6 Reverend Blair OFFLINE  

Reverend Blair

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 1659
  • 501 Thanks
  • 952 posts
  • Location: Winnipeg

Posted September 04, 2011 - 11:42 AM

I'm late to the party on this one, but this looks like a cool project.

To work around the trees you can hand-dig, being careful not to disturb the roots and keep the excavation as shallow as possible around the trees. I'd have a real tendency to put raised flower beds around them instead though. Higher maintenance, but it looks better. A lot of it depends on the tree though. A well-established tree usually has a root system about as large as the tree's canopy, so chopping off a couple of roots is something you can generally get away with.

For the gravel beds, I recommend digging down four to six inches, spraying with a good herbicide, laying down a thick landscape tarp, and filling with the stone of your choice. I'm on a river-wash kick right now, but there are plenty of options. If you can get some large rocks (right up to boulder-size) to act as a highlight, it always looks good.

As for cost, it varies a lot with place and season and I have no clue about the rates in Texas. Most places give free estimates though. You might want to consider renting equipment too, if you're comfortable running it. Just keep in mind that you'll be paying by the hour or day, so don't put it off once the equipment is at your place.

#7 JD DANNELS OFFLINE  

JD DANNELS

    Tractorholic

  • Senior Member
  • Member No: 2011
  • 3,786 Thanks
  • 3,907 posts
  • Location: Newton.Ia

Posted September 08, 2011 - 08:39 AM

Mike's picture is great, and gives a good example of what can be done. I'm about 700 miles north of you so what works here may not work in your climate. With all the talk of wild fires in Texas, a nicely landscaped fire break is making a lot of sense.

You seem to have pretty good sod. You could go to a rental store and rent a sod cutter. It will cut the sod about 3-4" deep.
You can probably sell the sod to offest the rental cost. once the sod is removed you could simply run a tiler over the area to loosen it up(I'm assuming bedrock is not near the surface) not always the case in Texas. Here in Iowa you would need a barrier under the rock to keep the grass from growing up through it. As for the trees, they are a valuable asset ,and I know if you see a nice tree in a yard in Texas someone put a lot of work into caring for and nurturing it. I don't know what species they are so don't know what the rootball would look like? You can be pretty sure that the dripline(spread of the foliage) will give you a good indication of the root spread. You might want to ring the root spread area with landscaping block(or something simular) so as not to disturb the roots?
You mention water rushing down the sidewalk. unprotected stone would likely wash away. Again you might want to look at a landscaping block(or something simular) border to turn the water and keep your rock in place?

I see your in Amarillo, that's a big enough City, there should be a couple Landscape Supply yards there. I would reccomend you go to them and tell them what you want to do. I'm sure they will give you good advice on your options and what materials and plants are available and will work in your climate. They are there to sell product, and would think advise would be part of the sale.

I am making some assumptions, based on building fences around homes in San Antonio and Austin back in 1984.
Not a good assumption since the soil can change dramatically. I remember one job where we had to jackhammmer limestone to set posts in one location and another a few miles away and could dig through 10" sandstone with hand diggers, and a few miles further was digging black gumbo that hand diggers bounced like you were digging in rubber tires had to fill the holes with water and muck them out. your several hundred miles from those cities so I don't know your soil.

Edited by JD DANNELS, September 08, 2011 - 09:13 AM.





Top