Landscaping your yard with decorative rock is a great way to add color and texture to your lawn and other vegetation. Here are some recommendations to help you as you plan and install a decorative rock garden and ground covering in your landscape.

Order the Right Amount For Coverage

When you install a new layer of decorative rock in your yard, it is important that you arrange for enough that it will cover the soil sufficiently so that the soil or landscape fabric does not peek through gaps in the rock. And insufficient rock can also make it easier for weeds to grow. 

The amount of decorative rock you need to cover an area in your yard depends on the type of rock and its size and appearance. Traditionally, the larger the rock size, the deeper you will need to layer it over your soil area. For example, if you are installing pea gravel that is approximately one-half inch or less in diameter, you should look at laying the stone at a depth of two inches. For larger rock and crushed gravel that range in size from one-half inch to an inch across in size, plan to install the rock at a thickness of three inches or more. Rock that is larger than an inch, such as river rock, volcanic rock, and granite chunks, you will need to order enough that it can cover a depth of at least four inches.

Talk to your decorative rock supplier to get help calculating how many cubic yards you need for your project.  For small projects, look at ordering the rock by the bag, but for large projects it is usually more affordable to buy it in bulk on pallets or by truckload. Also ask about delivery options for your rock order to make your work less.

Understand the Qualities of Rock Mulch

By installing rock in your landscaped areas, you can help reduce your landscaping's water consumption and keep down weeds, but keep in mind rock mulch has different qualities than any other type of landscape mulch. For example, wood chip mulch breaks down through decomposition over time, and each year, you will need to replenish it to keep your mulch layers consistent. Rock as a mulch does not decompose, so it eliminates the need to replenish it each spring. So, even though decorative rock has a higher price, you save money by not having to order replacement.

Keep in mind that if you plan to place decorative rock mulch around vegetation in your landscaping, the rock absorbs and reflects heat upward onto your vegetation. This can require you to water your plants a bit more to keep them from drying out. 

For more information on decorative rock, contact a local landscaping supplier.