Even the people who never considered themselves handy around the house have picked up a few DIY projects during quarantine. If you are someone who is already into small projects around the house, by now you are probably running out of ideas. Having a garden and a backyard is always a great luxury, but especially when your time outdoors is so limited. It makes sense to put in some extra effort into the space you get so much use out of.
The thing with gardens is: they are often more beautiful and scenic the less we interfere. However, you still want to keep things in line so it would be allowed to thrive. One of the great options for a garden project is doing a DIY garden path. Paths add to both the functionality and the aesthetics of your backyard. They are not that difficult to create yourself and can really boost your curb appeal. Lastly, they add a bit of structure and organization to your garden space. If these sounds like a project for you, here are our most beautiful DIY garden path ideas.
Before we provide you with the ideas to transform your outdoor space, you should check if you have all that you will need. Obviously, there are different paths you can go down when picking the right material for your backyard, so the tools will differ too. In general, it is good to have:
- drywall saw
You also want to protect yourself with some gear. Wear gloves on your hands to ensure you can get a good grip on things and avoid injuries. You should also wear clothes you don’t mind ripping or staining. Furthermore, spending long hours in the sun without protection poses different kinds of danger. Whether it’s heat stroke or sunburn you want to avoid, you’d do well to equip yourself with a hat and sunglasses. Finally, really lather on the sunscreen. Make sure you also drink enough water during the day to avoid dehydration.
If you are fond of DIY projects, you’ll probably have a lot of this gear already. If not, you can order lots online, but your local home improvement store will also carry these things. Once you’re done and don’t want the equipment creating clutter in your shed or garage, there are plenty of options for storing tools in a decent and safe unit. They will be kept safe and out of your way until you need them again.
DIY Garden Path Ideas
Mulch and Gravel Paths
Creating a mulch or gravel path is one of the simplest DIY garden path ideas. Besides being pretty easy to use, they are also quite affordable. They don’t require a lot of heavy lifting and allow for different kinds of garden path designs.
All you need to do is clear up the sod, roll out the landscape fabric in the path shape you want and then cover it with mulch or gravel. Both materials can be quite diverse. You can choose between coarse bark, decorative mulch, washed stones and crushed gravel. The design itself can be casual and meandering or very formal and carefully edged. A winding path is easy, relaxed and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance.
Mulch Pro Tip
There are three most common types of mulch you can use for a DIY garden path: wood chips, cocoa bean and cypress bark. They are very easy to haul and spread, but since they are organic, you will need to freshen them up about every two years. You should also be careful not to use them if this area of your garden has poor drainage. There is nothing worse than a perpetually soggy path.
Gravel Pro Tip
Gravel is a bit more lasting than mulch and is particularly good if you want a firmer surface for your DIY garden path. There are also three basic kinds: crushed gravel, crushed limestone and pea rock. Crushed stone is great because it won’t get kicked into the yard, and it provides you with a firmer surface. It isn’t very practical if you’ll have to shovel snow off it as it will then end up all over your yard.
A Stepping Stone Path
Stepping stone paths require a bit more structure, but are still an incredibly easy idea for a DIY garden path. Using your trowel, dig up and remove the sod. Organize the stones in the design you want leaving space between them. Because there is distance between each stone, you don’t have to worry about leveling them, although you can use sand to do that. If it’s a shorter path, you’ll even be able to handpick the stones for it.
Alternatively, instead of going to a landscape supplier or a quarry to get the stones, you can go to your local home improvement center and get some patio blocks for your garden path. You’ll treat them the same way you would stones, and they come in a wide variety of sizes, colors, textures and even patterns.
A Stone + Plant Path
This DIY garden path idea is a version of the stepping stone path with some added pizzazz. Use large stones like flagstones to form the path design. Again, no need to worry about being precise, as you want there to be space between the stones. In order to connect the stones to one another (and obscure any possible flaws), you’ll plant a low growing perennial plant. The key to doing this successfully is to pick a plant that won’t be ruined by foot traffic and will grow between the stones. Some of your options are creeping thyme, sedum, dymondia, chamomile, jewel mint of Corsica, etc. You should choose this plant based on the conditions it would get once it’s planted.
The last of the most beautiful DIY garden path ideas is a salvaged brick path. It will add a bit of nice color to your garden while also being environment-friendly. In addition, its worn-in look will give your backyard a nice air of coziness. In order to lay it, you’ll need to get rid of sod, set plastic edging along the inside, line it with sand and then set the bricks in the sand, leaving about an inch between them.
So there you have it – some of the most beautiful DIY garden path ideas out there. Whether you decide to go with something as simple as a winding gravel path or a more effortful stone and plant path, your garden will both gain some aesthetic appeal, as well as additional functionality.
About The Author: Ruby Tandor is a DIY-er extraordinaire. She usually blogs about home renovations, DIY projects and relocations. She lives in Boston with her partner and their two cats.
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