Does Your Yard Have a Landscaping Theme?

5 Reasons To Add Rocks To Your Landscaping

by Dan Mckinney

When it comes to landscaping, many people focus so much on the plants that they forget the mineral kingdom. Yet rocks can provide a strikingly beautiful and highly useful element to your landscape design.

1. Better Drainage

In areas of the yard where moisture tends to pool and collect, drainage issues need to be addressed. Trying to cover bare soil in these areas with bark mulch doesn't work well because the mulch simply floats away. Heavy stones both stay in place and help water drain through and into the soil quickly. Rock mulch is excellent for use in rain gardens or underneath roof gutter downspouts.

2. Long Life

Rock mulch doesn't need to be replaced every year like organic mulches, since it doesn't decompose. In fact, when properly installed in a lined and edged bed, rock mulch can last many years, if not decades, without any type of replenishment. The rocks will also maintain their color and lovely appearance, although they may need to be washed off with a sharp spray of water occasionally to remove dust and dirt.

3. Reduced Maintenance

Very little maintenance is ever required when it comes to caring for rocks in the landscape, especially compared to the constant weeding needed in bare beds. The main issues are leaves, which may settle on the rock bed. These can be cleared out with careful surface sweeping or the use of a leaf blower. If weeds invade the bed, then treatment with a full spectrum herbicide will solve the problem. 

4.  Heat Management

Dark-colored rocks absorb heat down into the soil and can make part of the yard warmer, which is a good thing if you are in a cool or mild climate and like to grow warmth-loving plants such as certain succulents. Lighter colored rocks reflect the heat, which can keep the surface of the yard -- a lovely thing to do around patios and outdoor seating areas.

5. Versatile Uses

A rock mulch can be used in many parts of your landscaping. It's suitable for use in rain gardens or desert-style planting beds. You can use it as a decorative cover for bare soil, or to fill in the spaces around paving stones. Rock mulch can even be used to create a pathway or patio if you prefer it to other types of paving. 

Contact a local landscape rock delivery service like Portland Sand & Gravel Co Inc if you are ready to add some natural hardscaping to your landscape design.