The Best Rocks for a Driveway

Gravel is one type of rock used to create residential driveways.
Gravel is one type of rock used to create residential driveways. (Image: Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Building a driveway is an undertaking that involves a little work for a major complement to your landscape. By definition, a driveway is a private strip of roadway that serves as an access way to your home and property. It may be constructed out of a variety of materials and within any design scheme that will help define the mood and atmosphere of your home’s architecture. Rocks are commonly used to create driveways and offer an affordable option with nearly endless decoration possibilities. Many different types of driveway-acceptable rocks exist, resulting in a variety of driveway projects you can do without hiring a landscape professional or gardener.

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Crushed Rock

Crushed rock is also called road metal. Used since antiquity, first as weapons then as a roadway building material, crushed rock is a manufactured byproduct that begins by mining ore, which is then processed by crushing devices that render the ore and make jagged edges or chippings. Crushed rock is different from gravel, which is made by weathering and erosion processes. Limestone and dolemite are two of the largest supplies of crushed rock on Earth. This type of rock is popular due to its ability to shed water with proper yard drainage and because the rocks can be paved over easily in the future if needed.

Gravel

Unlike manufactured crushed rock, gravel is made through weathering and erosion by natural elements, which produces a smooth edge. Like its crushed rock counterpart, gravel can be used in a driveway due to its ability to shed water with adequate yard drainage. You can also easily pave over gravel if you decide to construct a paved driveway. Gravel is less expensive than crushed rock or any other stone material.

Cobblestone

Cobblestone, while expensive, is a strong and long-lasting option for a driveway. For centuries, it has been used to build streets and roads, far outlasting concrete or asphalt. Due to its high cost, most homeowners will opt to use cobblestone as an apron on asphalt because the use of the cobblestone still increases the overall property value of the home. Sandstone and limestone varieties of cobblestone are available; however, granite cobblestone is the most common.

Lava Rock

Lava rock is unique in shape and texture, allowing for water drainage in the way it soaks up water like a sponge due to its porous nature. Lightweight and easy to install and manage, lava rock is abundant in Hawaii and is an eco-friendly alternative to concrete and asphalt. However, lava rock can be somewhat expensive compared to other hard-scaping options such as gravel or crushed stone.

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