Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Landscaping Tips

The following are recommendations and tips from Greely Sand & Gravel.  Of course, there are many other websites that offer great ideas for do-it-yourself projects, but these are just a few to help you get started on your do-it-yourself project.

Want to do your do-it-yourself project but don’t have the tools to get it done We offer an convenient all-in-one Lawn & Garden Tool Rental Kit.  It has a lawn roller, commercial grade wheel barrow, tamper, various types of shovels, leveling rake, and much more.  Perfect for sodding a new lawn, installing interlocking,

Greely’s Topdressing Soil

Topdressing a lawn: Add 1/2″-3/4″ of Topdressing Soil to an old or sparce lawn and then rake the soil through the blades of the grass.  Adding seed to the new soil will help make your lawn more full.  But don’t add too much soil for it can smother the lawn, so keep it to a minimum. Want more topdressing tips?

Gardens & flower beds: When adding to existing gardens and flower beds, 2″-3″ is recommended.  For increased effectiveness, blend the new soil in to the existing soil.  When making a new garden or flower bed, a 6″-12″ depth is recommended depending on the type of plants you will be planting.

Screened Topsoil

For seeding or sodding:  For a new lawn, a good base of 4″-6″ of screened topsoil is recommended. When redoing an old lawn perhaps only a 2″-3″ new layer of screened topsoil is needed.

Mushroom Compost

Flower beds & gardens: Add 1″-2″ of mushroom compost on top of flower beds or gardens and then blend the mushroom compost in to the existing soil.  The mushroom compost is very high in nitrogen, so it is highly recommended to blend the mushroom compost in to the existing soil and to not leave it on top of the beds or allow it to rest against plants.

Mulch

For new flower beds:  Apply 3″ of mulch to prevent weed growth yet still allow water to access the soil.

For older flower beds: Apply approximately 1″ to refresh the mulch every year or alternating year, depending on the effectiveness of the mulch.

Coloured Riverwash Stone

When calculating depth, be sure to get full coverage.  For example, go with a minimum depth of 2″ for the sizes 3/8″-5/8″ and 7/8″-1″.  For the 1 1/2″ size Riverwash Stone, go with a depth of 3″.  And for 2″-5″, we recommend calculating at a 7″ depth.  It is also recommended to add a weed barrier or GeoTextile first before placing the Riverwash Stone to ensure weeds are restricted.

Stone walkways: If you’re thinking of using the 3/8″-5/8″ Riverwash Stone, the smaller sized stone may provide more of a sugary feel under your feet.  However, if you want to place outdoor patio furniture on the stone, the smaller size will allow the outdoor patio furniture to slide in to the stone.  Where as the 7/8″-1″ Riverwash Stone can provide a more stable feel under the feet but it may not be as effective with outdoor patio furniture.

Renfrew River Rock

For the 1″-4″ Renfrew River Rock, we recommend calculating depth at a minimum of 5″ for full coverage.

Crushed Stone & Stone Dust

Under patio stones and interlocking: Add 4″-6″ of 7/8″ crushed stone for a base and then compact it with a hand or machine tamper.  What is more beneficial is compacting the crushed stone in lifts, which means that you would add 2″-3″ of 7/8″ crushed stone and then compact it.  Then add the next 2″-3″ layer of 7/8″ crushed stone and compact it.  This will allow for increased compaction.  Then add a 1″-2″ layer of stone dust for levelling purposes for the patio stones or interlocking.  The other option is to use 1″-2″ of concrete sand instead of stone dust since the concrete sand does not compact, allows for easier levelling, and provides good drainage.

Driveways:  Top up old driveways with 7/8″ crushed stone which provides structure and compacts.

Pathways: Use 7/8″ crushed stone to create a sturdy path.

Under sheds:  A 4″-6″ base of 7/8″ crushed stone compacted with a hand or machine tamper.  The other option is to use 7/8″ clear stone instead of 7/8″ crushed stone.  But first, refer to installation instructions for your shed.

Under hot tub pads: A 4″-6″ base of stone dust is recommended.  What is more beneficial is compacting the stone dust in lifts, which means that you would add 2″-3″ of stone dust and then compact it.  Then add the next 2″-3″ layer of stone dust and compact it.  This will allow for increased compaction.  But first, refer to installation instructions for your hot tub.

Clear Stone

Under sheds:  A 4″-6″ base using 7/8″ clear stone.  The other option is to use 7/8″ crushed stone instead of 7/8″ clear stone.

Washed Brick Sand

Used under pool liners:  A 4″ base of washed brick sand provides a smooth surface for the pool liner to rest on.

Washed Concrete Sand

Under patio stones & interlocking: Add 4″-6″ of 7/8″ crushed stone for a base and then compact it with a hand or machine tamper.  What is more beneficial is compacting the stone in lifts, which means that you would add a 2″-3″ layer of 7/8″ crushed stone and then compact it.  Then add the next 2″-3″ layer of 7/8″ crushed stone and compact it.  This will allow for increased compaction.  Then add a 1″-2″ layer of concrete sand for levelling purposes.  The concrete sand does not compact, allows for easier levelling, and provides good drainage.  The other option is to add a 1″-2″ layer of stone dust

Ottawa Playground Sand & Playground Stone

The recommended depth for a safe playground is 12″ of Ottawa Playground Sand or Playground Stone.

Cedar Weave, Fiberweave, & Fibertop

The recommended depth for a safe playground is 12″ of compacted Cedar Weave, Fiberweave, or Fibertop.  It is best to compact the playground mulch in lifts which means adding a 3″-4″ layer and then compacting it with a hand or machine tamper, followed by another layer of 3″-4″, and so on.  Therefore, due to compaction it is recommended to add an additional 20% to the calculated volume.