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  • Writer's pictureMark Shepherd

Concrete Pavers - Simplicity & Elegance

With styles ranging from the ordinary to the ornate, pavers bring style and structure to your hardscape projects.

When you are deciding on a paving material for your landscape and other exterior spaces, it cand depend greatly on what your needs are overall. If you need to cover a lot of area, if you need very tightly-fit pieces, if you want something that is easy to maintain - these are all handled well by using interlocking pre-cast pavers.

In the majority of paver applications, the base material is compacted crushed rock, as opposed to concrete slabs. It takes the place of a slab, though the correct steps must be taken to achieve full structural integrity. The spaces between the pavers is minimal - around 1/8 of an inch - which is filled in with sand (either regular sand or a hardening polymer sand). And the edges are secured using hidden strips of plastic or metal pinned to the ground with steel spikes.

Patterns are another consideration. Most paver product lines have options for various mixed patterns. This gives a much more interesting look which more closely imitates the look of real stone. Some patterns are more complicated and seemingly random while others have more obvious alternating rhythms. For a large swath like a driveway or a patio it is often best to have a continuous border framing it in.

The selection of color can help to make a given paver variety fit in visually with your surroundings. Here the tan & red mix of these Columbia Slate pavers paired well with the color of the existing decking and wall blocks. Gray colored pavers, like the ones shown above, are often made to have slightly mixed tones from piece to piece, also giving it a more natural appearance.

Maintenance is less complicated than many natural stone installations. The surfaces can be pressure washed to great effect, but be sure to sweep new sand into the joints. Otherwise the pavers will eventually be undermined from the lack of friction the sand provides.

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