My house has an old pebble path that runs around about half of it. I am looking for the best way to extend the path in the same style.
The existing pebble path is made from packed dirt (which has a lot of clay where I live), that slopes gently away from the house. This seems to be effective for carrying heavy rain from around the house without ever becoming muddy/waterlogged, even after a week of rain. Weeds occasionally grow through, but are easily dealt with using glyphosate. The path is edged with bricks. The house is in a temperate climate (Sydney, so no freezing) and dates from about 1890. The house exhibits a lot of cracking due to movement in the clay soil so I want to ensure the path drains quickly.
Some of the less public areas used to have an asphalt covering, but most of this was recently destroyed when I had some sewer pipes replaced. The asphalt is not attractive and so I want to extend the pebble path to match.
I have had a look on the interweb for suggestions, but none suggest packed dirt as a base. Some suggest coarse aggregate (blue metal) as a base, but I think this will just hold water that runs off the house and is trapped behind the edge of the adjoining lawn. I also like that when pebbles are pushed away from the existing path that the dirt underneath is neither uncomfortable, no looks like a building site.
So I am planning to lay the path like this:
- Break up the exiting lumpy surface. (Rotary hoe looks a bit too big for this, any other suggestions?)
- Lay string to ensure the new path will fall away from the house and be flat.
- Flatten and compact the dirt using a motorised compactor.
- Install bricks as edging.
- Lay pebbles about 10mm thick.
Will it work? Why? Why not?