As the cost of living goes up, creative cost-cutting methods need to match it step by step. In non-essential aspects of our life, such as landscaping and home improvement, this creativity is essential to maintaining financial security. That is why a flagstone pathway is a perfect solution to both an attention-starved yard and a shoestring budget while being a great DIY project that everyone can get involved with. The following four reasons are just some of the many benefits of completing your own flagstone pathway.
1. FLAGSTONES ARE SUSTAINABLE
For years, the quintessential American yard has featured one thing: grass. However, anyone who has ever had their own grass lawn knows that keeping that lawn thriving is no cheap deal. Between seeding or installing sod, running an irrigation system, cutting the grass, edging the grass, keeping weeds out, feeding the grass, and watering the grass, that perfect piece of greenery can end up costing a pretty penny. Flagstone is the exact opposite. While the initial cost is usually greater than installing a lawn, flagstone pays off in the long run. Aside from the occasional unruly weed popping up, flagstones are maintenance-free, and they never lose their good looks. They will not wither, die, brown, or get eaten, they demand no water or other natural resources, and they require no investment in expensive maintenance tools or landscaping companies.
2. FLAGSTONES ARE VERSATILE
The beauty of flagstones is that they can fill such a large variety of roles. If a cheap alternative to a sidewalk is needed, simply place straight-edged pieces of flagstone where the concrete would be poured, and watch the new walkway jump to life. If your garden needs stepping stones to define a trail that will not harm the sensitive vegetation, flagstone has it covered. How about a patio for barbecuing, or a homemade labyrinth? The possibilities of flagstone are only defined by the imagination of its user.
3. FLAGSTONE INSTALLATION TAKES VERY LITTLE TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE OR TOOLS
A huge cost in most other landscape installations is labor. Not many people can just figure out how to build concrete forms or install sod. Flagstone is intuitive and requires nothing but the flagstone itself, a shovel, a wheelbarrow, and some heavy lifting. The only thing to remember when installing flagstones is that each one should be firmly set in the ground and at the same level as the stones around it to prevent tripping hazards. A few wheelbarrows full of wet sand can help greatly with setting the flagstones so that they are secure. Additionally, giving the pathway a slight slope will assist with water drainage, especially in areas with lots of rain. Aside from these few considerations, though, it is ultimately up to the installer to decide the details of his or her own design.
4. FLAGSTONE INSTALLATION IS ARTISTIC AND FUN
One of the reasons that flagstones have caught on as such an excellent landscaping option is that the work itself is far more entertaining than most other home improvement tasks. This is especially true if the person doing the work enjoys being artistic; flagstones come in a huge variety of shapes and sizes, and making all of those shapes fit together is a feeling much akin to solving a puzzle, except that this puzzle has more than one solution. It is highly recommended that all the flagstones be laid out in the exact place they are desired before anybody tries to set them. This can save a lot of unnecessary work down the road. Flagstone installation is also something that family and friends usually get excited to participate in, and if enough people are involved on a job, the project can be finished on a weekend or even a day.
The cost of a water bill alone should be enough to convince most people to think twice about installing a lawn. When making any home improvement, strive for something creative, something that can be looked back on as both a fond memory and a job well done. Flagstones are the perfect example of a unique home improvement that everyone can afford, build, and maintain, all while saving money, making a better home, and having fun.