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Walkways & Paths

An attractive walkway to your front door or garden path through your yard can add distinction and value to your property. Visitors often form their first impression of your house from the condition of your walks. If they are cracked and damaged, even a beautiful interior may fail to reverse a bad first image. Well laid out paths invite visitors to explore your garden and lead them on the journey you have chosen for their enjoyment.

Your walkway’s location and intended use, and the style of your house and garden can help you decide which design and construction materials are most appropriate; here are some sugestions to help you choose:

  • Generally, the closer to the house, the more formal the walkway should be. Walks to the front door should be smooth enough to shovel off any snow (in northern climates) and to accommodate deliveries. Informal paths, including stepping stones, are good choices for more remote areas. Look at the architectural style of your house and its exterior siding and choose walkway materials that complement it in texture and color.
  • Solid walks constructed from concrete or asphalt will last for many years and stand up to all kinds of weather. They usually need to be installed by a professional, as they require pouring special mixes of cement or hot tar into preset form boards. Asphalt walks are best for areas where there is high vehicle or foot traffic but they lack the texture needed to successfully complement most single family homes.
  • For an authentic antique look, nothing beats the beautiful earthy colored tones of real brick, which can be laid in a variety of interesting patterns. Less expensive brick like pavers are also available in a wide range of colors. Their uniformity makes them especially easy to install.
  • Stone is another very popular choice for walkways. Fieldstone‘s irregular size and shape makes it a little less formal looking than blue stone, which can be cut with a circular saw into uniform rectangles and squares. Both of these can be set in mortar or laid on a base of crushed stones and sand. These stones will last longer if they have good drainage. They can be simply placed on the ground as stepping stones, but over time they will deteriorate.
  • Many people like the look of concrete blocks which have been colored and tumbled to smooth their edges so that they resemble cobble stones. These sturdy blocks can be mixed and matched to create patterns rich in texture. Since they are strong enough for driveways, they are especially suitable where large areas need to be harmoniously paved.
  • Paths made from loose materials such as wood chips, pine needles and gravel are easy and inexpensive to make, but they are difficult to shovel and will need to be replenished on a regular basis. They are best for back or side yard spaces.

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