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Garden Path

I am hoping to lay a path down the garden, it won't be long, maybe 15 feet. I'm trying to decide what material to use. Idealy I want something that:

  • Not slippery when wet
  • Not muddy
  • Sustainable
  • Long lived
  • Doesn't hurt when walked bare foot (gravel is out).
  • Low cost

Can anyone suggest anything? I'd like to avoid paving slabs if I can, but they are looking increasingly like the least worst option.



Slate shale (they call it scalpings round here) with a weed-suppressing membrane underneath.

Somewhere I have pics of the one I did. I'll see if I can find them.


Reclaimed bricks tick all those boxes.
Can be very labour intensive to do a proper job, but if you like the 'rustic look', could be laid quickly.
wellington womble

Do they not grow endless weeds? Our block paved driveway did.

Do they not grow endless weeds? Our block paved driveway did.

I'd say yes, in a similar way to the small stretch of old quarry tile path we have. I laid it on a bed of sand and every year the dandelions appear.


Wood chips. I used to use all my chips from the workshop for paths and they pretty much did all you ask. Only snag for you would be that you need to keep them coming but if you know of any wood workers or turners they often struggle to get rid of their chips.


Do they not grow endless weeds? Our block paved driveway did.

Depends how you lay and joint them.
Yes block paving with sanded joints will eventually succumb to weeds.
I meant bricks as in house bricks. Laid on a proper base with 10mm joints and mortar pointing there should be no weeds. Or just chuck em on the ground and go for the rustic look.
Graham Hyde

I know what you mean about the look of paving slab pathways but can you do a 'stepping stone' effect with a shaped concrete paver rather than the usual square? Can look softer when set into grass or even into a bed of pea gravel.
Be careful of using 'common' bricks as pathways as they sometimes fracture and crumble in frosty conditions when used as paths.
I don't know if 'common' is still used as a class of brick in the UK....maybe called 'house bricks' now,.... don't know.

They're still common. Yes bricks should be suitable for below ground use / frost resistant, which most facing bricks are. Done right they should be ok for a decade or two. Will not last as long as (concrete)block paviors tho.

Used/surplus block paviors can be picked up v. cheap on ebay.

Slabs and shingle are a good combo.
2-4 inch gaps between slabs - will need occasional weeding, but easy to lay - no cutting or jointing and no worry about falls and drainage.
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