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HomeBuildHow To Put A Stone Patio Down

How To Put A Stone Patio Down

Prepare The Setting Bed

How To Lay Patio Stones
  • 4.1 – Stretch a string over the surface to determine the final height of the paving. For a large area, include a slight slope to aid water drainage.
  • 4.2 – Spread the crushed gravel or stone dust to a thickness of 5/8″ to 1″. This thickness will be reduced by about 40% after tamping the pavers.
  • 4.3 – Level out the setting bed. This can be done using two rigid 1″ diameter pipes and a straight plank.
  • 4.4 – Move the pipes along as needed to level the entire surface.
  • 4.5 – Fill the marks left by the pipes.

Establish A Slight Slope

Set up a string line across the center of the patio in the direction you want the water to drain. Tie the stringline to stakes driven at each end of the patio so it stretches in the best drainage direction. Use a line level to adjust the string until it’s level. Then lower one end of the string 1 in. for every 10 ft. of length to establish a sloped reference line. Youll use this string to gauge the depth of the hole as you dig, and to set the slope of the compacted base.

In Between Luxe And Simple:

Finally, if youre looking to install a patio somewhere in-between low-budget and luxe, be mindful of ways you can achieve a high-end finish without over-investing in details:

  • Choose high-end materials that you can install yourself opt for smaller pavers and stones vs. giant, heavy materials.
  • Install a wood burning oven for cooking, instead of running gas lines for a grill.
  • Purchase furniture instead of designing built-in seating
  • Use solar lights instead of running new electrical components

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Even Out Your Surface

To avoid any stones sitting or settling higher than others, you’ll need to even out your base layer. A tamper tool comes in handy for small areas. Larger projects such as driveways may require you to use a plate compactor.

Also, consider that in some cases you might want to add a gentle slope to your patio to provide drainage away from your home and avoid the pooling of rain water.

The Character Of The Stone Makes This Patio

Easier Paver Patio Base That Will Save Your Back

Stone Options:

Stone varies greatly in color and texture. Visit a number of stone suppliers to see what’s available in your area and to check prices. We chose 3- or 4-in. thick stone intended for building walls, but any relatively flat stone that’s 2 to 4 in. thick will work. Because stone is sold by the ton , a thinner stone like flagstone would have been more economical, but it wasn’t available in the tumbled finish we wanted. If you use thinner stone, don’t tamp it with the compactor. It will crack. The stone dealer will tell you approximately how many square feet a ton of each type of stone covers. Order at least 15 percent extra to allow more selection when you’re looking for just the right shape.

Clay Pavers:

Concrete pavers are the most economical choice for paving patios. They are available in many sizes and colors. Traditional clay pavers have truer brick color and cost a bit more. Concrete pavers are available at home centers and landscape retailers, but you’ll probably have to find a brickyard to buy clay pavers. You’ll need about 4-1/2 bricks for every square foot, assuming an average sized 4 x 8-in. brick. It’s difficult to figure the exact amount of brick needed for an irregularly shaped patio like this, so order about 15 percent extra.

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Learn How To Hardscape

We understand that no matter how beautiful hardscape is to look at, its intimidating to install. Thats why we publish DIY tips, tricks, and step-by-step tutorials at and host a live DIY seminar every month during the summer at one of our manufacturing or distribution facilities.

If you have any questions, please visit our Paving Stone Display at our Manufacturing Facility in Rickreall, OR. Or, give our team of hardscape experts a call at 503-623-9084.

Lock The Bricks With Sand

Spread sand over the bricks, then sweep across the patio surface with a push broom to work the sand into the cracks. Sweep in multiple directions to reach all cracks, adding sand as you go until the cracks are filled. Gently spray the patio with a garden hose to settle the sand in the cracks. Spread and sweep more sand into the cracks, and spray again, until the cracks are completely filled and the sand is settled.

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Crushed Stone Patio Among The Trees

Crushed stone is laid down and tamped into a perfect square within the grass. You can create little corner areas by just adding a few patio stones for a hard surface. This is a very easy design to create with the straight edges. To keep the stones in place you could incorporation a simple brick edging or even flexible rubber edging used in gardens.

Perfectly squared crushed stone patio

Does My French Drain Need An Outlet

How to Lay down a Stepping stone Patio

A properly designed French drain system does not require an outlet. The water will simply soak into the soil as it flows along the perforated pipe. In fact, a French drain doesnt require an inlet on just one end either. You can construct the drain to accept water along its length, and disperse it underground.

Read Also: What To Do With Cracked Concrete Patio

How To Install A Crushed Stone Path

A crushed stone path can add a rustic charm to your garden. It is also cheaper and easier than many of the alternatives. It is a job that you should be able to manage on your own with a basic set of DIY skills and experience. This will save you even more cash over having a tradesman doing it. Crushed stone is generally cheaper and easier to install than a cement base. Without the necessity to spend hundreds of dollars on landscaping experts, a crushed stone path or patio can still look just as good as anything else.

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Edging material

Step 1 Plan and Outline Your Crushed Stone Path

Before you decide where to locate the path, be sure that there are no cables or plumbing installed under the ground in that area. To confirm this, you may want to contact your utility companies before starting work. When you have established where the path is going to go, you will be ready to mark an outline of it in the ground. You can use wooden stakes with string tautly tied between them to mark the boundaries of the path. Alternatively, you can use spray paint or something similar.

Step 2 Dig Out the Area

Step 3 Apply the Crushed Stone and Sand

Step 4 Apply Pavers and Sand

Paving Stones: Diy A Paver Patio In 6 Easy Steps

Paving stones are a great way to spruce up your home’s outdoor areas. Here’s how to use them.

Enhance your home’s curb appeal with paving stones.

Paving stones are a powerful tool you can use to create unique and beautiful areas in your home’s outdoor spaces. Available in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and materials, they’re a relatively simple way to add extra style to your front or back yard.

For instance, paving stones are great for sprucing up patios, walkways and firepit areas. They offer a good range of design aesthetics, too. Are you partial to natural stones? Perhaps you prefer uniform patio stones? Maybe traditional cobblestones or shaped concrete blocks are more your speed. Whatever direction you go, there are pavers available for creating pathways, patios, borders and even driveways.

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If you’re considering a paving-stone project like that, then you’ve come to the right place. This guide lays out what you need to know to use pavers well. We’ll also provide guidance about how to select the right ones and we’ll give pointers on how to install your paving stones properly, too. Do it right and your designs will last for years to come.

Some types of paving stones can be used to create striking driveways.

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Ready To Order Supplies

7. Setting the Pavers:

After all the prep work is done start placing your pavers in the sand, using your straight edge as a guide. Butt the pavers close together. There should still be a thin joint line between the pavers that will be filled with sand later. Use a straight edge to ensure Paver are level. Use a rubber mallet to knock down any high pavers. Add more Diamond Sand and reset any low pavers. If you were diligent leveling the sand, you should only have a minimal amount of leveling at this stage.

8. Laying pavers over an existing slab:

First mortar your soldier pavers around the edge, keeping a consistent ½ joint. Then, lay a ½ of Diamond Sand in the field. It is imperative to lay a sand bed down to create a buffer between the pavers and the concrete slab. Pavers rubbing against concrete will eventually wear down and/or crack. This will also smooth out any imperfections the slab may have had. Laying pavers over an existing driveway is not recommended, no matter the size.

9. Brick Distribution:

If you are installing more than 1 pallet it is a good practice to pull Brick from several different pallets as you work through your project. If there are slight color variations, this practice will help to minimize any noticeable difference.

10. Cutting pavers:

11. Concrete Restraining Edge:

12. Laying pavers over an existing slab:


Lay The Concrete Pavers

Installing patio pavers is not as tough as you think

Cut your spacer down to the size you have planned for your joint width.

In the photo above, my metal bars are diagonal because I needed to slope my patio in two directions. I thought it would make it easier this way, but I ended up pulling them out and keeping them straight. It was easy enough to follow the slope lines with the strings.

Lay one the first spacer down, and use a squaring tool to lay down a crossing spacer. Then carefully place your first concrete paver against the two spacers.

Repeat, using the spacers to lay more concrete pavers. Remember, you can walk on these as you lay them.

My metal bars are lying diagonally in the photo above because I needed to slope my patio in two directions.

I thought it would make it easier this way, but I ended up pulling them out and keeping them straight. It was easy enough to follow the slope lines with the strings.

Lay one the first spacer down, and use a squaring tool to lay down a crossing spacer. Then go ahead and carefully place your first concrete paver against the two spacers.

Repeat using the spacers to lay more pavers. Remember, you can walk on these as you lay them.

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Without Further Ado Heres How To Install A Pea Stone Patio

I listed affiliate links to all the supplies I used at the end of the post. Read more about affiliate links here.

1 | CLEAR THE GRASS. My son Peter and I did this a month ago by renting a sod cutter. You can read about the process here. It was a pretty hefty job but the sod cutter made the bare ground perfectly even and ready for the pea stone.

2 | INSTALL EDGING. This is a biggie when using gravel in landscapingcontain it with a border of some kind. Our driveway parking area has a pressure treated wood border that works great if you are installing a squared off design.

This is what Thom Filicias gorgeous lakehouse firepit has around it.

Cobblestones make a beautiful border

I wanted to use them, but at $3-5 per stone they were out of my price range. Our patio is rounded, so I went with black powder coated metal edging that can be curved. I was a little leery of metal edging at first because its not all that aesthetically pleasing in and of itself, but look at the difference it makes between the patio and the gardens!!

Here is a closeup of both two pieces joined, and the stakes driven through the edging into the ground.

Once the gardens are filled with plantings and mulch Im hoping the metal will disappear, but in the meantime its pleasing to the eye to have all the pea stone contained.

3 | INSTALL LANDSCAPE FABRIC. After the edging is installed, but before the pea stone comes into play, I strongly suggest you install a weed barrier.

Puzzle Together The Flagstone

Start by grabbing the larger stones and placing them around the perimeter of the patio. You want to use the larger stones on the outside because smaller stones will move and shift with time. Large stones will lock the smaller stones toward the center in place.

Then, start adding the rest of the stones to the center, working toward the middle of the patio. Cutting the stones is time-consuming and dusty, so spend a few minutes trying to puzzle them together, so you have to make as few cuts as possible.

Heres a quick tip: The tighter and more consistent you try to make the seems, the longer its going to take because youll have to make waaaay more cuts. If you dont mind bigger gaps, youll save a ton of labor, and you can get by with fewer stones to save some cash.

To cut the stones, you can use anything with a diamond blade on it. You see me using an angle grinder in the video, but there is a much easier way to cut the stones, which is to use a concrete saw with a larger diamond blade, as I demonstrate here.

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How To Install Patio Pavers

This article was co-authored by Scott Johnson. Scott Johnson is the Owner and Lead Design Consultant for Concrete Creations, Inc., an award-winning landscape and design company based in the San Diego, California metro area. He has over 30 years of experience in the pool and landscape construction industry and specializes in large estate outdoor environment construction projects. His work has been featured in San Diego Home & Garden Magazine and on Pool Kings TV Show. He earned a BS degree in Construction Management with an emphasis in Architecture and CAD design from Northern Arizona University.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 12 testimonials and 94% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 532,592 times.

Installing a patio in your yard can transform an ordinary outdoor space into a wonderful gathering area. Using pavers to create your patio is economical and allows you to build an endless variety of shapes, sizes and colors. It will take work on your part to install a patio made of pavers, but you can easily do it yourself from start to finish.

Not Compacting The Base

How to Install a Natural Stone Patio – Do It Yourself

Before laying bedding sand or pavers, your gravel base needs to be flat and firm, without any bellies or rises of more than 1/8. You accomplish this kind of precision by properly compacting your base and your pavers. If you fail to compact, youll experience sunken or raised pavers. In other words, a bumpy, uneven base will produce bumpy, uneven pavers.

The best practice is to compact your gravel base, in both directions, with a steel tamper or a plate compactor 2 at a time until youve achieved the right thickness. Youll want to use a steel tamper for small projects and a gas plate compactor for more extensive patios, driveways, and walkways.

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An Outdoor Gathering Place

Creating a patio of your own means that you’ll be able to spend more time in your backyard. You can start with a small area and gradually improve it with addtions such as a water feature, hot tub, or even a heated enclosure so you can enjoy it in cooler weather as well. A backyard patio will serve as a place for family and friends to gather. Always a good thing.

Gather with family on your loose material patio!

D Flagstone Patio Site Preparation

Flagstone patio site preparation is where we cover all the things required to get the site ready for the sub base. Let’s go over a few things before we get dirty.

At this stage you should have a permit , your utilities marked, and your excavation area marked with landscape marking paint. You are ready to dig.

Cutting a perimeter

I always found it helpful before excavating the main area to prepare the perimeters first. This includes cutting your edges with a sharp edging tool or a good square nosed shovel.

This prevents damage to bordering lawns and other features. Heavy equipment like bobcats and excavators can easily tear lawns or damage walkways, driveways, or other features.

Having the perimeters already cut down the depth of a shovel blade and cleaned out will prevent this damage. This step may take me half an hour or 2 hours, but it has saved me thousands of dollars over the years.

If you are installing edging, don’t forget to excavate wider than the planned surface area as the base will have to support whatever edging you install.

How far down should I dig?

The industry has developed guidelines according to climate zones around the world that tell us how far down to go.

Let’s say you are in Alaska and you need an 8 inch gravel base while someone in southern England needs a 2 inch gravel base.

Remember that these are only guidelines.

Dig down as far as is needed.

Once you remove the topsoil , you will usually be into clay or hard packed dirt.

Leveling and Staking

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