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It’s About Time

September 29, 2011

I’m finally getting around to putting in an official path between my raised beds in my kitchen garden.  The tattered landscape fabric had been screaming at me to get on it for a while now.

Yikes!  I will first be needing to re-lay some fabric for future weed control.  Not a weed to be seen in the path, so it’s definitely done its job this summer even without a protecting cover.

tattered landscape fabric

One of the main reasons why I’ve put this project off, is that I just couldn’t figure out what material I wanted to use for the walkways.  Pretty much anything that was incredible was way out of budget or not practical.  I wanted to use a material that is very natural looking as well as maintenance free.  And the cheap pavers I could afford, really didn’t fit the look I was going for. 

I fell in love with this wood stump path idea from Domesticated Nomad.  Very, very cool looking. 

Wood path in garden

Image from Domesticated Nomad

But I had a lot of questions about using this material.  What kind of wood did I need to use – I assume something rot resistant-ish?  Did the wood need to be dried or sealed?  And also is this safe, they look like they’d get super slick when wet?  Would it last very long or pop loose a lot?  Etc…..etc…..etc.  As I researched for answers I just didn’t get a good sense that this was practical for me.  Looked like a lot of work for an uncertain outcome. 

Then on DigginFood, I caught a glimpse of a kitchen garden that had paths made from small rock chips and I was surprised at how much I loved that look.  I think gravel has been somewhat overdone in today’s landscapes, but this was such a small chip and looked as if the garden had been created around this natural element.  I loved its simple look and how it really turned the focus towards the plants. 

DeLancy kitchen garden - gravel path

Image from DigginFood

This then led me to the website of the above garden designer Fresh Digs, where I found more inspiration with the use of small gravel.  (This is the dude’s front yard…drooling).

Image from FreshDigs

I did a shout out to @FreshDigs on Twitter letting them know I loved the look and asked what size of rock and how deep of a layer they used.  On the same day I got a response that quarter-inch minus was the way to go.  This will pack down some so rock isn’t tracked all over the place, but still not looks like man-made concrete.

Just so happens that there is a local quarry business with product nearby and a Dad with a dump truck, which makes this solutions pretty much a no brainer.  Dad, Sally (my parent’s doodle) and I finally went and got a load of quarter-inch minus this week.

Here’s my pile.  I’m sure you can guess what I’ll be doing this weekend.  I’m also sure I’ll be doing lots of shoulder stretches in my yoga practice next week, as shovel-scooping tends to be so unkind to my body.  🙂

pile of 1/4" minus

I’ll be sure to post updates.  Anyone with a shovel feel free to join me…I know you think it looks like fun!

Have any fall outdoor projects you are finishing?

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