Decorative Landscape Rock Types


Landscaping with rock can add elegance and contrast to landscaping projects. Many types of rock provide function to yards and gardens and are also pleasant to look at. Depending on the project, certain types of rock are better served for achieving conclusive results. For more information about what type of rock to use for your particular project, contact a local supplier.

River Rock

  • River rock stones are generally smooth and multi-toned. These stones are gathered from river beds where they were worn smooth by river water. This rock type is ideal for projects involving river replication or layouts involving water. Use larger size river rock in gardens to create artistic designs or to outline gravel paths. River rock can vary in size from 1 to 8 inches.

Lava Rock

  • Lava rock is a porous, lightweight ground cover rock. Colors range from a bright, brick red to gray and black. You can use this natural ground cover to accent walkways and gardens; it gives striking contrast to tree wells due to its color. Lava rock is also used as a pond liner to encourage quick plant establishment. Due to its ability to subdue plant growth, you can use lava rock to stop weed growth in decorative gardens or lay it under porches and decks to keep the area clear of plants.

Pea Gravel

  • Pea gravel comes in smooth and jagged varieties. Choose the type of pea gravel carefully; gravel for a children's playground should be smooth instead of jagged to prevent injury and discomfort to hands and feet. Pea gravel also works well as a garden mulch, allowing water to pass through to plant roots without ever forming an impermeable layer.

Sonoma Gold

  • Sonoma gold rock is a coarse rock with a gold or ginger color which works well for landscapes that boast a desert look because the rock is light in color and resembles a dusty desert. This rock type works well for landscapes that do not have a lot of vegetation and helps to accent the plants that are present.

Crushed Limestone

  • Crushed limestone is good for packing. Driveways and parking areas benefit from the use of this gravel type. Crushed limestone also holds up well in walkways or paths where stepping stones or blocks are used. The packing nature of the stone keeps stepping stones secure in the gravel path.

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