A budget-friendly DIY & lifestyle blog

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Budget Friendly Landscaping: DIY Pea Gravel Pathway

For those of you that don't live in typically sunny locales, do you ever start looking over your shoulder when you've had a few sunny days in a row?  Like, the rain is your stalker and you have nowhere to hide?  No?  Just me?

Well, it's been absolutely beautiful since last Saturday.  We had a nice visit from my parents and put work on hold aside from hanging Luke's new swing which is a nice twist on the classic tire swing.  It is absolutely perfect for younger kids.  

But, as soon as my parents left on Sunday the break was over - we busted out the hedge trimmers and lawn mower and it's been non-stop ever since.  With sunshine in the forecast for a few days in a row I decided to tackle the eyesore outside.  A week or so ago we moved our power from overhead to underground and the electrical company who ran the line underground left us with a 75 foot long trench right smack dab in the middle of our yard.

Pretty, no?

After I got over the initial shock of the big dirt river flowing through our yard I realized that this was a total blessing in disguise.  I've been planning to put in a meandering pea gravel walkway in this very area and with it already dug up, all the hard work was done!  It also gave me a good excuse to  get this project done sooner rather than later. (I'm sure the hubs probably would have wanted to put it off.)

A few months back, I was searching for some budget friendly landscaping designs and I came across these incredibly helpful tips which made me realize that a pea gravel path would be the biggest bang for our buck.  I really love how natural it looks and how little upkeep it would be.  And when I happened upon this AMAZING garden from Trädgårdsflow (a Swedish blog) I was sold!

I could spend all day in this garden.

Once I had the okay from Josh and a few sunny days in my future, I drove to Home Depot and picked up my supplies for our 55 foot long meandering pathway, while Josh picked up a load of pea gravel from our local landscaping rock store.

And 114 dollars later (minus the gravel) I was mapping out the pathway and digging the trench. I tried to keep the path about 3 feet wide.  Thankfully we have sandy soil which made the digging part easy, but the loose sand did make it difficult to keep the trench clear and the width exact. 

Once the lawn trim was in place, I leveled out the ground both inside and outside the pathway.

With the ground level, I started to lay the landscaping fabric.  It was a bit windy so I worked in small batches...lay fabric, spread rock, lay fabric, spread rock.

With the rock in place it was starting to look more like a pathway.  I spread the grass seed and gave everything a good soak.

Right now it's all just shades of brown and it's hard to see the difference between the brown soil and the brown pea gravel, but once our grass starts to grow it's going to look pretty damn good, still not as good as Trädgårdsflow.  That garden seriously has it going on.

After two days of hard work, I think I'll take a break from any manual labor for a little while.  This lady needs some of that Lemon Sugar Scrub and a hot tub.  Hmm, Mother's Day IS coming up.  A girl can dream...


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