My front walkway: patio stones & grass

We finished the construction on our home in late summer of 2010 and even though we had hoped to finish the landscaping before winter it just wasn’t realistic considering all of the things we still needed to finish indoors.

Spring arrived and we were anxious to get going, when the snow melted we had load after load of dirt delivered not only to level the yard but also raise the front walkway a few feet to meet the stairs.   It rained for over a month, and dirt became mud…lots of mud, not only outside but in the house as well (yuck), still we remained determined.

A friend who works at Home Depot called to tell me about patio stones which were going to be reduced for 50% off.  That’s when I came up with the design for our front walkway.  I wanted something that would match our house (red brick colonial), and of course be budget friendly but most of all I wanted a look that would be soft:  My front yard hides my weeping field, which means no planting of  trees or large bushes, and has a long 60 foot driveway.   If I decided to do a traditional paved driveway with a uni-stone/concrete walkway and a simple grassed yard, it would make for a very hard and harsh landscape (not to mention boring).

Lack of a proper front porch also prompted the idea of making the walkway larger and into a sort of informal patio area.

After raising and compacting the area with fill and topping it off with some topsoil we rolled out the grass.  Next we laid out a few stones to determined how far apart we wanted them and armed with an edger, a level, measuring tape, sand, and a bottle of chalk we got to work.

Usind chalk, I outlined the patio stone. Once I removed the stone it was easy to cut out the grass with my edger.

It’s important to use sand under the stones to keep them from sinking into the dirt. After spreading it out, use a scrap piece of lumber (I used a 2 x 6) to compact the sand. Next make sure it’s level, add more sand where needed.

Several hours later we were finished and when we added a row of formal boxwoods and other complimentary plants, we had the soft ‘scaping we were going for.

The end results: Formal front walkway or Informal Front Patio? (both!)

The 101:  Patio stones are not just for backyard!  Be willing to get creative and flexible with landscaping and it can save you thousands. 

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3 thoughts on “My front walkway: patio stones & grass

    • Thank you -and yes, we mow right over them! I am so happy it turned out… it’s very different than what most other homes in our area have done -and I guarantee it cost us way less! It was a great solution to avoid adding more hardscape to our front yard. Good luck with your spring projects: This year we plan on focusing on the backyard and adding a fire pit area!

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