August 2013, Author: Joya Mitrano
Hardscapes are everywhere from sidewalks to boardwalks. Hardscaping is a type of landscaping that uses wood, stone, or nonliving material to cover the surface of the ground. Hardscaping has three main benefits. First, it can prevent erosion. Erosion can lead to dangerous mudslides, so it is important to avoid erosion, especially if living on a hill. Second, it can enhance safety. Installing a sidewalk on uneven ground can prevent sprained ankles, and injuries from falling on bumpy ground. Lastly, hardscapes can bring improvement to the landscape of a house and curb appeal. Hardscaping can be immensely beneficial to a yard, preventing erosion, restoring safety, and enhancing curb appeal achieved through basic materials such as, wood and stone.
The first step to think about, when installing a hardscape is the material. Each material has different advantages. The most popular hardscaping materials include concrete, brick, stone, and wood. Concrete, by far the pop star of hardscaping, is cheap, durable, and flexible. It can mold into any shape, and also can be dyed into any color.
It is used from patio floors, and walkways, to driveways, and retaining walls. Next is brick. Brick gives a classic look, however it is slightly more expensive than concrete. Stone is usually used for patio floors, because there is a wide variety of choices to choose from, such as flagstone, sandstone, slate, limestone, or quartzite. Wood is used for fences and decks, usually treated to withstand rain, snow, ice, whatever mother nature has to offer. The hard part is choosing your material, and limiting the combination to two or three materials per project (McGrath).
The next step is implementing hardscapes into the landscape. The simplicity of a hardscape surface, like a rock wall or patio, is perfect to balance out the organic, complex, natural plants and foliage. The successful contrast makes a well designed outdoor space and garden. Hardscapes like a birdbath, or statue should complement the flowers and plants around it, not detract from them. Larger hardscapes like a waterfall can replace retaining walls, and keep the natural ambiance of a garden (McGrath). Hardscaping involves hard, and sturdy material, but it is a rather delicate business, finding the balance between living and nonliving objects. Expert hardscapers can assist in this balancing act. One of the best inMorristown, Curb Appeal Design, can assist in this process. Start exploring the hardscaping opportunities and feel free to discuss your ideas for home and landscape improvement with Curb Appeal Design’s contractors.
McGrath, Jane. How Hardscaping Works. How Stuff Works. N.p. n.d. Web. 29 July 20
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