How to Landscape with Rocks – Care for Your Yard

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( — January 15, 2019) — When it comes to landscaping, using rocks for their aesthetic value requires much consideration. If you are researching how to landscape with rocks, then you need to be aware of the challenges that they can cause. Rock or gravel mulch can cause problems if you plan to use a lawnmower, and it can even affect landscape drainage and the quality of the soil. However, when done correctly, with the proper lining of the bed and correct placement of the rocks, you can avoid such shortcomings and reap all the benefits.

Steps on How to Landscape with Rocks:

1. Site Preparation

This is a very crucial stage. You start with removing weeds, grass and any plants that are placed under the rock. If not, these will still grow through, and they also affect how much you can dig below to get the rocks at level ground with the rest of the surface. You can remove the unwanted plants by uprooting them or using a herbicide. Make sure you take the appropriate precautions with the herbicides both when using and planting other plants in the area. If you have to level the rocks with the landscape or paved area, dig up to 3 inches deep.

2. Lay the Geotextiles

Geotextiles are fabrics used in landscaping which serve several purposes. First, they prevent the rocks from sinking back in the soil and the weeds from growing. They, however, allow air and water to seep through the rocks to the soil. When laying them, ensure you have a 6-inch trench around the perimeter of the bed and push the fabric in the trench to have it held and prevent it from pulling up. You should also overlap the fabrics and use U-shaped garden staples for further anchorage down.

3. Placing the Fabric Around Plants

If you are placing the rocks around plants, the fabrics have to make an allowance for the plants or future ones. To this end, make a large X cut in the sport where the plants will be and fold the flaps so that they do not rest on the stem of the plants. In the case of trees or larger plants, you need to cut around the plants. In both scenarios, you will have to watch out for weeds and pull them out whenever they surface. If left, they can easily spread and damage the fabric.

4. Lay the Rocks

Once you are done with the fabrics and plants, your final step is laying the rocks. Different rocks are used for different purposes. The small rocks like gravel are used for areas with no plants while large rocks serve in any area. Dark rocks will absorb heat and can be uncomfortable in hot seasons while the light colored ones reflect the light. Have the rocks spread evenly for about 2-3 inches thick — this is especially important if you’re laying rocks around pools. After some time the layer will require maintenance usually raking and replacement of rocks that have been carried away.


If you are interested in how to landscape with rocks, this guide will take you through the whole process; from preparing the bed to laying the rocks. There are a number of choices you have to make regarding the location of the bed, type and size of the rocks as well as whether the bed will be with or without plants.