Your choice of paving material can be the single most important decision you make when it comes to your PA backyard landscaping. Like the greenery of your yard, your paving materials add color, style and texture to your outdoor living areas. Yet, unlike plants and trees which form the backdrop to your home in Pennsylvania, paved areas receive heavy traffic and more frequent interaction with your family and guests. Hence the need for making your choice of paving material a conscientious one.
Longevity of Natural Stone vs Concrete Alternatives
One of the decision you’ll need to make is whether to opt for natural quarried stone, or a composite alternative material. Natural stone is a rich, characterful option, but not without its faults. These faults include potential spalling due to environmental exposure, lack of availability and non-uniform structural integrity. Here are some alternatives that are aesthetically attractive, while being more durable, less expensive and readily available.
Pavers made of composite materials offer a uniformity of structure that natural stone does not have. This makes it more reliable in areas that receive heavy loads, such as driveways or outdoor kitchens fitted with heavy cooking equipment. The precision casting of concrete pavers allows them to lock tightly in place, further enhancing the strength of the surface. Furthermore, when for whatever reason a paver needs to be replaced, it is an easier process when you use composite concrete pavers.
The Look & Feel of Natural Stone
Many concrete pavers are designed to replicate the appearance of natural stone and can bring out the beauty of greenery, flower beds, patio furnishings, pool areas and outdoor kitchen or fireplace areas. Perhaps more importantly, these alternatives are safer as they are slip resistant, and manufactured to withstand the harsh winters of Pennsylvania.
Related: Landscape Design Essentials
Variety & Freedom of Choice
The great range of paving materials makes shopping and designing fun, but the number of choices can also be a bit overwhelming. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages, and some are better suited than others to particular uses and locations. By understanding and exploring your options, you’ll be able to make the right choice.
Unilock offers an excellent range of concrete products, including pavers. Below are just a few options that we recommend.
A minimalistic, modern design, Artline pavers offer beautiful, subtle colors and a style that makes a patio, path or fireplace area a focal point in the landscape. This product line offers a clean minimalist style that can make an excellent contribution to modern or zen themed backyards.
Thornbury is a richly textured paver that is an ideal substitute for flagstone. In combination with the subtly blended colors, Thornbury is virtually indistinguishable from natural stone. With a random look and feel, the texture and appearance works well in any range of uses, from driveways and patios to walkways.
Richcliff pavers exude elegance and the charm of natural bluestone. Available in the colors Dawn Mist (a cool gray and blue blend) and Pebble Taupe (a blend of warm browns), as well as a combination of the two, Richcliff offers the randomized appearance and relaxed feel of stone without any of the drawbacks.