When deciding to add a hardscape structure to your home, there are many things that need to be considered.
Not the least of which is the type of material you want to use. There are a multitude of materials that can be used in hardscaping. Each has its own benefits and drawbacks. Here are just a few.
Slate is an extremely low maintenance and durable option for hardscaping. It has low water absorption which means it is resistant to frost damage and breakage due to freezing. It is also fire resistant. While most slate comes in various shades of grey, there are more exotic shades out there. Slate is slippery when wet, so it is not ideal for an uncovered patio or the area around a pool.
Flagstone comes in a variety of shades of red, blue, and buff. It is resistant to heat absorption, so it is a good material to use in any outdoor area you may be barefoot in. However, it is easily damaged and therefore high maintenance.
Brick is capable of withstanding heavy traffic so it is a good option if you enjoy having large parties or barbeques in your yard. Keep in mind that not all bricks are created equal. Some are more fire resistant or water resistant than others. Pay attention to where the bricks will be and what activities will be taking place in that area so you can be sure to get the best type of brick for your needs.
Concrete is one of the most durable materials, as evidenced by its use to build most buildings today. It’s fire resistant, low maintenance and can be poured into any shape. While the color options of concrete are fairly limited, it can also be stamped to mimic other popular building materials such as wood, flagstone, and tile.
Ultimately, the most important aspect of the decision making process is that, in the end, your new hardscape structure makes your yard a more fun and beautiful place to spend your time.