Ready to explore garden path and stepping stone ideas for your yard? These photos come from home gardens with walkways made from stone, brick, hypertufa, and concrete pavers.
If you would like more ideas for using stones in the garden (plus crafting with them), also see Garden Stone Craft Projects and How to Make Hypertufa Pots.
Garden Paths and Stepping Stones
“If you are in a bad mood go for a walk.~Hippocrates
If you are still in a bad mood go for another walk.”
I became a little obsessed with garden path design last summer while I was trying to figure out possibilities for my own back garden.
The pathway right now is grass and, with the very sandy soil, I know whatever I try will probably sink into the ground over a few years. I can verify this because, when digging garden beds, I have found bricks and pavers buried down below the surface: little patios and walkways that have gradually lowered into the sand!
So, for me, a stone pathway might be an unexpected short-term investment, but I do love them.
I took these next photos on garden tours and there are plenty of good ideas, most that you could do yourself without needing to hire a crew.
Related: Weeds on a brick patio? Here’s how to get rid of them.
These first few gardens have curvy pathways made from low cost materials.
When I was starting my current garden (from a bare lawn), I spent a ridiculous amount of time debating curves or straight lines and ultimately went with the most practical solution for the space (straight lines).
I’m guessing landscape designers also debate this topic. There’s no right or wrong but it does make for very different gardens.
This first garden is an incredible gem. The whole thing was so photogenic. The owner does a wonder job with plant colors and textures.
This next garden shows two ideas I like. The simple, curved concrete pavers, plus the stones used to create raised beds which double as a retaining wall.
Engraved Stepping Stones
Here’s the enchanted garden stone. I’m wondering if you could use a Dremel tool to engrave something like this?
Leaf-Shaped Stepping Stones
This is a fun idea for homemade leaf-shaped stepping stones.
You can make these giant leaf walkway steps in an afternoon. This has a good introduction to DIY hypertufa (including recipe) and concrete garden containers and art.
You can also make your stepping stones like this one:
Fossil Imprint Stepping Stone tutorial
Circle of Stones
I photographed this stone maze years ago in a country garden. They used the heavily-shaded area under the trees (where nothing much grows) to create this little work of art.
This circular design is in my garden. I discovered the bricks buried in the garden.
This is an easy way to dress up a mulch pathway: add some stepping stones. You can save money by using standard stepping stones with the more expensive mosaic ones sprinkled in between.
Here’s an idea: pour some concrete and then inset some decorative details.
Checkerboard Herb Garden
Checkers, anyone? I love how the paving stones are placed in a checkerboard pattern with various herbs and ground covers planted in the open spots. It’s a smart way to fill an area while reducing the opportunity for weeds.
Stepping Stone With Edging
Here’s another glimpse of the garden I showed you at the start (the one with the curvy brick pathway). The contrasting colours of the plants were just breathtaking.
And how cool are those garden art tulips?
This next idea solves a common problem: how to prevent grass from growing against flower beds. They lined the edge of the bed with pavers at grass-level which makes mowing much easier and eliminates the need for trimming.
This next one solves the grade problem by lining the edge of the path with stones.
These colorful stones definitely add interest to this path.
It’s a good idea to design the project based on the available materials rather than the other way around.
I like the combination of materials used for this next one:
Here a giant hypertufa leaf is set amongst the patio stones.
And finally, when it comes to arranging a pathway, consider flower power. Here the flagstones are cut and arranged to form giant flowers. There are lots of possibilities.
May your pathways take you just where you need to be.
~Melissa the Empress of Dirt ♛
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