Garden Paving Slabs: What You Need to Know

Adding garden paving slabs and garden pavers to your garden is a great way to enhance the look and feel of your creations. The mixture of stone and concrete, made by the hands of humanity, meshes well with the beauty of plants produced by nature.

The benefits of garden paving are enormous. The aesthetic benefits are obvious but no less important – you can frame and highlight the features of your garden that you like, perhaps providing visitors with a path to wander through your landscape. The other benefits are functional – you can provide a path for you to walk through or wheelbarrow through or move materials through that will not get muddy or dirty in any way, preserving the beauty and order of your garden.

Types of Garden Paving Slabs

Every garden paving slab is different, as they come in a variety of sizes and thicknesses. The first major choice you need to make is on the material of the paving slab. Concrete paving slabs are a very popular option, as they are cheaper than others, last long, and look great besides. Others pay extra to get natural stone paving slabs, giving their garden a natural look in the process. There are many different types of stone, from sandstone pavers and bluestone pavers to granite pavers and marble, each with its own benefits and design possibilities.

Before you select the material of paving slab, find out the specific properties of the type you’ve picked, as they all will react differently to the elements. While some may lose their fade and their finish over time, others will look ‘new’ longer. Whether or not this is a good thing depends on the look you want for your project. A weathered, aged look could look great in some places but terrible in others, while a new installation can look weird in other projects. It all depends on the specifics of your application.

Garden slabs also come in a variety of colors depending on the needs you have for your garden, landscape, or other hardscape features. There are different finishes you can select as well, from rough to smooth, depending on the look you want to portray. In addition, some paving slabs can be made with imprints or etchings, either stock or custom. As you can see, there are a ton of things to consider when purchasing these slabs. You will have many options whether you pick concrete or natural stone slabs, so ultimately it will be up to you to make the choice

Whatever your tastes, pick the type of slabs that best fit your needs for the garden’s traffic, looks, and design requirements. No matter what you pick, however, you largely won’t go wrong.

Installing Garden Paving Slabs

Installing paving slabs is similar to installing other hardscape materials like paving stones and concrete flags. Many homeowners will benefit from getting these slabs professionally installed, especially if the install area is troublesome in some way. Other homeowners should be able to install them by themselves, however, for only a little work and expense. More information on installing pavers can be found here.

Some garden paving slabs are installed like concrete pavers, as they are made to interlock and be compacted close together. These should be installed on an aggregate and sand base like concrete pavers or natural stone pavers would be. Others however could be installed with large gaps in between, gaps to be filled with grass or dirt of some kind. Still others could be installed like stepping stones, with very little connection and much material lying between each slab. The choice is up to you.

When installing them in your garden, consider the possibilities for expanding their use to other parts of your yard. For instance, using them in your driveway, backyard patio, walkway, pool deck, and other areas may be a great way to spread your designs further, while also maximizing the efficiency and lowering the cost of installing the hardscaping overall.

Note that these slabs can be very big. This is great for installation, as it requires fewer brick to cover a certain area. However, moving these heavy slabs can be challenging for one person, so assistance may be required to safely manipulate the material.

Maintenance of these slabs, if they are installed correctly, is quite easy, as they will last many years without serious work. Periodic sealing can help keep them looking new for a long time, and a slab can be easily replaced if it is cracked or stained. Sweeping and washing down with water can help prevent stains and dirt from marring the surface, though sometimes that look may be desired depending on the project.

Garden Paving Slabs Ideas

If you are inclined towards design, you can certainly design your garden paving area yourself. However, you may also hire a contractor or designer to design the ideal project for your space. Here are some general ideas to spur your creativity and get you started:

You have many options about the pattern of hardscaping you lay down. Ultimately the pattern options available to you will depend on the sizes and shapes of the paving slabs you select. You can pick more regular patterns, based on regular shapes, or you can pick irregular patterns made up of a variety of shapes or paving slabs that are themselves cut irregularly.

A walkway is a great way to lead guests through your garden. If you’d like, use an irregular pattern and put bigger landscape pavers in places where you want people to ‘stop and smell the roses’ – in other words, places where you’d like people to stop and admire your handiwork.

You could also consider using garden paving slabs as patio slabs in the middle of your garden. It’s easy to make a fire pit or barbecue too, and even add a waterfall in the area, to complete the look and provide you with a great place to gather and relax.

You could also use the paving slabs as a border between different areas of your garden. This can serve both an aesthetic and a functional purpose.

Garden Paving Slabs Price

The price you’ll pay for the product will depend on a number of factors, most notably if you buy concrete or natural stone pavers, among many other factors that have been well documented on other parts of this website. If concrete is poured to form slabs on site, the price will be still lower, though this will probably require professional installation unless you have experience working with concrete.

10 Great Garden Paving Ideas

Adding concrete pavers, cement pavers, brick pavers, or other hardscape materials to your garden is a great choice. However, you may be overwhelmed with all the options and design possibilities. Here are some things to consider when planning your next garden paving project.

Note that this site also contains many other articles detailing paver design ideas as well as ideas concerning other project types. Here is a brief listing of the articles that you might find helpful for more inspiration:

8 Wonderful Patio Ideas

Ideas for Using 24 x 24 Concrete Pavers

10 Cheap Paving Ideas

12 Front Yard Walkways Ideas

10 DIY Patio Ideas

Now, on to the ten ideas!

Ten Garden Paving Ideas

1) The type of material you choose is very important. Price, quality, and durability will vary depending on the material, brand, and manufacturer. We here at Concrete Pavers Guide recommend garden paving stones for your next project for many reasons that can be found all throughout this site. Just to mention one, concrete paver installations stand up well to the use and abuse that they can be subjected with. The garden paving stone is a very durable critter. Freezing and thawing cycles, for instance, can cause havoc with normal garden paving slabs made out of concrete or some other solid material, as they provide no protection against cracks or fissures. Pavers, on the other hand, will rise and fall with the freezing and thawing with no cracking or structural damage to the installation. More information on this article can be found all throughout this site – it is called the Concrete Pavers Guide after all!

2) One of the best garden paving ideas is installing a walkway through your garden or landscape. You can tailor this walkway to fit the dimensions of your garden, and you can use it to provide a walking path for your visitors through your front or backyard creation. They thus serve a dual use, which all great home improvement project should – aesthetics and function (looks and use).

3) Be aware of all the color options available for your pavers, as you will surely be able to find a combination that complements your landscape features nicely. It would be quite beautiful, for example, to have flowers with a color that matches that of your paving stone project. You can choose from single colors or double and triple color blends.

4) Create a backyard patio that centers within your landscape. Your scene will thus frame your beautiful patio, and the two will nicely complement each other. Imagine entertaining friends and family in your own backyard paradise! A paver patio is one of my favorite projects, as it adds so much to a yard.

5) Garden paving is often a good DIY project for those with little experience, as many of these installations need to be purely functional. You can then practice installing pavers or other materials without fear of marring your front walkway, driveway, or back patio. After you’ve gained facility in installing pavers, you can then move on to tackling projects with more aesthetic restrictions and needed skills.

6) If you are on a budget, you may want to consider other options for materials for concrete pavers. They are expensive, and so is the labor and time required to install them properly. You may choose to obtain garden paving slabs, despite the problems listed above. If the slab is small, you may see less cracking over time. However, your design options will be limited, especially if you create a walkway or patio out of these small slabs.

7) Don’t forget the idea of enclosing your patio and/or your garden. An enclosed patio is a great way to increase the ways and time you can use your patio and enjoy your backyard landscape and garden.

8) Landscape pavers can be used in many ways, ways that are only limited by your creativity. For instance, you can use them to edge different areas of your garden or landscape. You can also use them to build retaining walls; retaining wall pavers can be in the same color and style as the pavers you use for other projects around your yard. You can use other materials, such as landscape timbers, for your wall, or you can just use the plain poured concrete wall as well.

9) Adding structures to your backyard – such as statues or fountains – is a great way to increase the class and elegance of your home and garden. You can buy them preformed, of course, or you can find concrete molds for sale and make them yourself – as long as you feel proficient with pouring concrete!

10) Finally, consider using pavers to raise a particular area out of the ground. This can be done to create a raised paver patio, for instance. Building a paver patio doesn’t have to be hard, either, even if you are raising it, though most people will want to hire a contractor for the work.

If you have any other garden paving ideas, or other questions or comments, leave them below!