Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Installing a Decomposed Granite Path

A decomposed granite path or track fines is popularly known as an informal pathway. This is highly advantageous because of its smooth form and good permeability thereby making the water penetrate the soil underneath it. It is also easy to install and at low cost. Decomposed granite path is highly appropriate on garden surfaces or as topsoil.
Decomposed granite path may be commonly popular but it has its disadvantage too. For instance, if your floors are made of hardwood wearing your shoes inside the house may cause scratch or scrape the floor leaving an ugly mark that may not be easy to remove. Decomposed granite path may sometimes turn to puddle when it is constantly wet and may be prone to erosion especially if the path is on the hillside.
Putting up decomposed granite path is not hard as long as you know a technique in installing it properly to make it solid and lasting. A basic knowledge and skills on carpentry and a nearby access to a water supply plus a roller is important.
The first step is to know where to put your path. Provide header boards along the edge of the pathway. It must be two inches wide and four inches deep in dimension. The wood should be pressure treated as it is going to be used in the ground. Use two by four for straight runs or one by four board for curved runs. This is to contain the decomposed granite.
Dig up the intended pathway for the header board layout. The depth should be one inch. This will make the decomposed granite path into three inches deep for the surface with one inch of soil. Brace yourself on this part as this is the hard part in putting the decomposed granite path. Start installing the header boards and provide an anchor using a wooden stake or anything functional to your purpose. A distance of four feet in between will be sufficient enough.
In filling up the area between the header boards make an estimate of how much decomposed granite path you will need. Be ready with your calculator and paper and pencil to make the computation quick and easy. By multiplying the measure of length and width of your paths you will get the square footage and by dividing it by four the answer will give you the cubic feet. This is how much decomposed granite you need in filling up the pathway. If the materials you need are sold by cubic yard all you have to do is divide the cubic feet by 27 to get the result in cubic yards.
There are several colors to choose from of decomposed granite. Grey and gold colors are the popular ones but you can shop around and find the right color you want for your decomposed granite path.
Now we will start filling up the area between the header boards with the decomposed granite. Be careful in doing lest you will commit the most frequent mistakes made by some people. In putting up a decomposed granite path it must be done in thin layers. The material must be totally soaked in water after it is layered by 1 ½ inch thick. Let the moistened decomposed granite path sit for eight hours before you start to compact it with heavy roller or a vibrating plat compactor. Apply another 1 ½ inch thick layer of decomposed granite then let it sit for another eight hours and do all over the heavy compact. Since the granite has been compressed a third layer must be added to make the decomposed granite path swill out with the top of the header board.
Your job is finished. Despite the hard labor you have done a well made decomposed granite path is accomplished. This kind of path is almost maintenance free and it did not burn a hole in your wallet.

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