How to Remove Pea Gravel

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Pea gravel, a mixture of 3/8- to 3/4-inch rocks that have been crushed and rounded, is commonly used as a landscaping tool. The gravel doesn't need to be watered and is easy to maintain. People use it to build paths, fill empty spaces and even mulch flower beds. But gravel is long lasting, and can overstay its welcome. If you've decided to remove pea gravel in favor of planting flowers or a lawn, gather your supplies and get ready for some hard work.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Gloves
  • Wheel barrow
  • Choose a good day for your project. Temperate weather will make for an easier work environment, but rain will turn the dirt into mud and complicate your task. Ask friends and family members to help, to spread the workload and make the project move more quickly.

  • Slide the shovel into the pea gravel and pick it up to dig up the pea gravel and transport it into the wheel barrow. Once your wheel barrow is full, dump the pea gravel in a designated storage area. Although it's hard, manual labor, getting rid of pea gravel requires digging it out. Shovel the pea gravel until you near the soil level.

  • Use the shovel to mix the last inch of pea gravel into the soil; because the rocks of pea gravel are so small, they can be mixed into the soil without damaging a plant's or tree's ability to grow there.

Tips & Warnings

  • Consider mixing larger stones or crushed stone/dust into your pea gravel to stabilize it rather than removing it.
  • Save pea gravel for future uses in stone walls, roofing projects or concrete walkways.
  • Pea gravel rocks can be sharp, and will get hot in sunlight. Always wear gloves to protect your hands.

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