There are tons of options when it comes to installing a garden path in your own backyard. You can opt for a simple gravel trail, paving stones, crazy paving, or a combination of two or three of these options. Fortunately, the method for installing each of these paving options is essentially the same.

Today’s blog post walks you through your very own DIY garden path installation.

Firstly, work out exactly where you want your path to lead from and to. Take into account areas of high use, like the well-trod path to the shed or hosepipe. Natural walkways like this generally make a really sensible place to lay any new path.

You can use string, rope, spray paint or even the garden hose to plot out your path.

Once you’ve got the initial position in place, calculate how much material you will need. Whether its gravel, paving, brick, or whatever else you’ve decided upon, it’s important to make sure you have enough of everything you’re going to need before you get started.

Do take advantage of expert advice here. The store selling your material should be able to give you a good estimate based on your measurements. Always remember to factor in a little waste contingency too – you never know how smooth your installation is going to run.

Just as we advised in our previous post on installing fence panels, remember to check that you won’t end up digging anything up that will cause serious disruption. Check for electrical wiring, pipe work (if you’re digging deep), and any pet remains from long-forgotten treasured pets.

Time to dig!

Now it’s time for the hard work to begin. Figure out how deep your path needs to be, taking into account the area around it, and the depth of the material you’ve chosen. Remember that paving slabs can be pretty thick, and gravel paths need a decent covering to make sure they look brilliant. Also remember to account for the thick layer of sand you need to lay down before your path material is positioned.

Level surface

Now you need a really good surface on which to lay your path. Make sure you pat it all down very firmly and that the ground is at least a little damp.

Next, it’s time for the first layer. Working methodically, spread a decent layer of sand out in sections to ensure even coverage. Make sure this is then patted down firmly as well before moving on to the next section.

Path time

Now comes the exciting part. After all that hard work, it’s time to lay down your material. If you’re using paving, make sure you position the outside edges first – then fill in 

the gaps. You may need to cut paving to size. If you’re trying to create an intricate pattern of paving, it’s well worth spending time researching installation methods. Ours is just a beginner’s guide!

Final touches

Make sure your new path is firmly compacted down. Many people opt for compactor hire for this job – this is the bit that’s well worth doing right. Finally, fill in all the gaps with sand – a little like grouting. Brush away any excess and Bob’s your uncle.

So, there you have it, now all you need is some beautiful edging and a few carefully placed planters from us and your garden will be the envy of all your neighbours!