Transform your backyard with one of these amazing pea gravel patio ideas! Turn your space into an outdoor living area with a fire pit, cozy seating, or even a play area!
Pea gravel is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to add a patio to your backyard. But you can't just dump a truckload of pebbles on the ground and call it good! I've rounded up some of the best pea gravel patio ideas I could find, in the hopes that one of them will inspire you to give your yard a makeover!
Why Choose Pea Gravel?
Why would you use pea gravel over pavers or concrete? Here are some of the reasons why I chose a loose bed of gravel instead of a solid solution for my backyard makeover.
Pea gravel is much cheaper than a similarly sized patio made of pavers. I used concrete pavers for a border to keep the gravel from escaping into the lawn, and that single line of blocks cost more than an entire truckload of gravel!
I recommend getting a truckload of pea gravel delivered to your home rather than dealing with individual bags from the big box store. It's MUCH cheaper, and there's usually a larger selection of colors to choose from. A dump cart like this one makes this back-breaking work much easier!
Pavers require a perfectly flat and level surface. That means digging out the yard and adding multiple layers of landscaping fabric, crushed stone and paver sand, checking to make sure each layer is level. Then there's edging and cutting the pavers to fit and all that nonsense!
Concrete is even more labor intensive! You'll need to mix the concrete in a wheelbarrow or rent a mixer, build a form to the desired shape of the patio, pour the concrete and smooth out the top. Then keep your fingers crossed that no air bubbles or cracks form while it dries!
Pea gravel is much easier in comparison. A border is recommended to keep the pebbles in place, but you can use wood or larger rocks for a different look. Then all you do is dump in the gravel!
Tamping down the first layer keeps it compacted and prevents it from shifting underfoot.
Concrete, whether in slab or paver form, doesn't allow rainwater to drain away into the soil below. If it's close to the house and hasn't been leveled properly, you could send all that water straight towards your foundation!
In comparison, pea gravel allows rainwater to reach the roots of plants and trees that may be growing nearby. If you fill your patio with the recommended 2-3 inches of gravel, it won't mix with the soil underneath and you won't have a mud pit on your hands after a storm!
Ready to be inspired? Check out these amazing pea gravel patio ideas and get started on your own backyard oasis this weekend!
Turn a neglected corner of the backyard into a beautiful pea gravel patio seating area in a single weekend! This tutorial walks you through each step, from digging out the proper depth and adding a paver border, to tamping down the stones so they don't escape the space.