Build your own rock garden

Rohinton Gatta

Rohinton Gatta


Want to create a beautiful zen garden with nearly zero maintenance? With some careful planning, preparation and the right selection of materials you can have yourself a relaxing, beautiful rock garden.


You’ll want to clear away any weeds, grass or plants in the area you plan to put your new rock garden. Leaving them behind will allow weeds and grass to push up through the stones. 


Mark the edges of your bed with paint. Next you’ll want to level that area. When leveling consider the height of the bed you’re creating. Do you want it level with your lawn? Raised slightly or sloping downward like a riverbed. Once leveling is complete lay a weed barrier to make your maintenance easier in the future. 


Choose a variety of different sized and textured stone to add visual interest to your rock garden. You’ll want a stone ground cover as well and there are many to choose from. River rock, lava rock, brick chips or pea gravel will all provide a different look for your new rock garden.

When selecting larger stones the size shape, and texture will all add interest to your design. Don’t discount manufactured stones or paving stones when selecting your mix. Many man-made stones are very attractive and organic in appearance. Also consider including paving or flagstones for a low relief element to your design. 

You’ll likely want to move some stones around to find a pleasing arrangement. Keep in mind if you’re selecting very large stones they can be difficult to move but will create a visual focal point. 


Installing an edge to your garden bed will prevent weeds and grass from growing into it and help keep any looser smaller rocks contained. 


Choose plants that don’t clash with your rocks, are low maintenance and suitable to your climate. Consider using junipers, Hens and Chicks, creeping thyme, Blue Fescue Grass or Ajuga to name a few. Your local garden store will be able to help you select the best varieties for your serene garden bed. 

A rock garden can be a beautiful addition to any landscape design. For help selecting materials visit one of our locations across Southern Ontario

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