Rocks — published on April 9, 2008

Landscaping with Rocks

Driving down a country lane our first glimpse of a stone wall along the edge of a field evokes the rustic the beauty of an era that has past into history. The thought of the toil it took to remove these plow breaking rocks from the field are not our first thought as we offer appreciation to the form and beauty that these stacked stone walls offer.

These stone walls, representive of the challenges of an earlier life, are now appreciated in a different sort of way.

You can say that rocks are an icon of order and timelessness. Something that serves as an anchor for anyone looking for an historical link.

So it’s only natural that a new rock would be invented. One so light weight and durable that it could become another common element in today’s landscape. All because an appreciation for this material and technology to make realistic copies.

A single large rock can make a very dramatic statement but also be rather costly. That is until artificial rocks came along.

Now these light weigh, pre-cast rocks are creating a niche of their own. Copied from real rocks they have the presence of real rocks without the cost. Often used to hid unsightly elements, they have gained popularity as a complimentary form for lawn and garden landscapes.

Professionals frequently use them as lightweight substitutes for the real thing when called on to hid an unsightly utility or provide landscape accent.

From Stonehenge to recent times, we’ve had an appreciation for the timeless qualities of rock. And in recent years we have taken to it with even greater enthusiasm.

If you’ve looked at new housing development you may have noticed this growing popularity of rock in outdoor décor, now a common natural element in residential landscaping and building. In some circles it has grown more popular than brick for home designs.

Skillful stone masons are finding plenty of work for other projects as well. Add that to the fact that many DIY are trying their hand at weekend projects only reinforces the notion that stone is a wonderful material for home and garden.

An ever growing selection of lawnscaping materials has added new possibilities to outdoor décor. With a greater variety of choices lawns are taking on a new look, one that carries with it beauty throughout the year and reduces the need for heavy maintenance and chemicals – pluses in an environmentally challenged world.

Larger houses on smaller lots also call for different thinking, complimentary soft forms like juniper, boxwood and viburnum group well with rocks and garden sculpture. If this is your situation, there are resources that can help you make the right choices for region and local conditions. Take the time to identify plants that will thrive in your area to ensure success.