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4 Common Landscaping Problems and how to Avoid them

From small patios to large terraces, landscaping can completely transform an outdoor space making it more attractive and usable. 

To provide you with some pointers, here’s 4 common landscaping problems and how to solve them.

A landscaping project is an investment and something you want to ensure is built to last. Whether you opt for a professional to carry out the work or you have the skills to do it yourself, it’s essential that necessary steps are taken to prevent any issues further down the line. 

1. Butt Jointing 

This is a landscaping method where paving stones are effectively ‘butted’ next to each other, leaving no joint space. This technique is sometimes used to create a more minimalistic look but leaves no room for grout between the stones and can lead to a multitude of issues further down the line. 

Butt jointed paving can sometimes cause delamination, where the stone surface begins to chip and flake away. Whilst this can occur when other paving methods are used, butt jointing usually accelerates the process. 

Another common problem faced with butt jointed paving is spalling. This is when paving slabs begin to erode because of close contact with adjacent stones. 

To avoid this, it’s recommended that you leave a gap of at least a few millimeters, depending on the stones and layout you want to accomplish. 

2. Spot Bedding 
Sometimes used as a technique to save time, spot bedding is where paving stones are laid on dollops of mortar instead of a full, flat bedding layer. Whilst saving time in the short term, this paving method can lead to a whole host of issues further down the line. 

When laid on an uneven surface, the voids below the slabs make it easier for them to fracture and split under a heavy load. The dollops of mortar often set at different rates, causing individual slabs to rock and come loose. 

Surface water can also accumulate in any voids which may lead to subsidence over time.This method can also cause reflective staining, which is when unsightly stains appear on the surface of the slabs. 

To avoid these issues, it’s recommended that you lay paving on a full, flat bed so the slabs have the stability and security they need. 

Image Credit: Ortis Deley Via Twitter

3. Drainage Problems 

If your garden is often left with large puddles that take days to disappear, then you’ll need to look into your drainage before laying new landscaping. Getting this solved beforehand will ensure that your paving is built to last. 

Drainage issues are common and can be caused by a range of factors from your garden being below the water table to an uneven surface. You’ll need to take some time to figure out where the issue is coming from and get your garden prepared.

A flat surface is essential for any landscaping project, otherwise cracks and misplacement may occur further down the line. Surface water may also settle, causing puddles and unsightly stains.

As every garden is different, to correct any drainage issues, we recommend speaking to an expert who can diagnose the issue and implement a solution. 

Image Credit: Houzz.com

4. Green Staining 

Once the paving is laid, aftercare is key if stains and build-ups are to be avoided. There are a number of causes for green staining which can all be easily avoided with the right maintenance. 

These stains can build up in shaded areas where excess water is blocked from the sun and is unable to dry. They can also be caused by fallen leaves and debris sitting on the surface forming a build-up of moss and mould underneath. 

To avoid this, be sure to sweep your paving regularly with a soft bristled brush. This will help ensure that any debris is cleared and wet patches are spread across the surface, enabling them to dry. Be sure to concentrate on any damp or shaded areas as this is where any staining tends to thrive. 

If green staining has already occurred then there are cleaning solutions available, just always be sure to check that the formula isn’t too abrasive for your particular stone.

Image Credit: Mossout.com

Learn more 
If you’d like any further advice on landscaping and how to choose the best stone for your garden, we’d be happy to help. Take a look at our range here or call us on 0116 380 0545.