5 Practical Uses of River Rock for Your Landscaping

River Rock
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Decorating your lawn gives you a more comprehensive range of options than working with indoor spaces. This is because you can combine plenty of organic and composite elements to create a beautiful design. Every building material from timber, rock, and sand comes in different variations with unique effects on your landscaping’s overall look.

River rock is a versatile organic material that comes in a colourful range of grays, browns, and beiges. Besides its diverse palette, it can have great applications to different landscaping installations that can breathe life into your lawn’s design.

The Many Practical Uses of River Rock

River rock is commonly found on beaches, stream beds, and – quite obviously – riverbeds. They’re refined through smoothing and polishing to remove moisture to give them a round-like shape. Since they’re generally small at around two inches in diameter, they’re an excellent material to use for landscaping projects, both large and small.

In this article, we’ll share five practical uses of river rock on your landscaping design.

1) Accents to Rock Gardens

Rock gardens generally highlight large pieces of stone arranged creatively. This creates an organic contrast against other elements in your lawn, like plants and flowers. Instead of having a freestanding arrangement of stone in your yard, you can apply river rocks as the base of these micro-boulders. These will make great visual complements to highlight the dynamic layers of your landscaping design.

2) Materials for Walking Paths

Creating a path along your lawn is an excellent way to create focal points visually while providing a functional pathway to and from your house. Since river rocks aren’t as coarse as sand, they don’t stick and scatter when encountering rain or wet footwear. Although they don’t offer the rigid stability of tiles or pavers, river rocks create a more relaxing environment in your lawn through the assortment of small, round stone pieces.

3) Addition for Better Water Drainage

River rock offers better drainage for water to pass through. Because of this, you won’t have issues with water running over and flooding areas you want to protect in your lawn. It’s why pavers, concrete, and asphalt have functional advantages over a porous collection of materials like pebbles and small rocks. With river rock, you can control the natural and artificial flow of water from seeping into other areas of your lawn.

4) Mulch for Flower Beds

Garden beds can look and feel bland, even with an assortment of colourful flowers on top. Thankfully, adding a layer of river rock provides a functional and aesthetic advantage to your crops. Unlike organic mulches like wood chips and shredded bark, rock mulch offers a cleaner look while maintaining soil moisture and reducing evaporation rates. Additionally, river rock adds a layer of protection against the sun by retaining and reflecting heat.

5) Highlights for Ponds and Fountains

Since river rocks come from bodies of water, it’s only natural that they will complement your lawn’s water-based attractions. They’ll make great additions to poolscapes, fountains, ponds, and anything in between!


All landscaping materials have their own quirks, which is why it will be tricky to know which materials work best with your proposed design. Although something might look great on paper, its installation and long-term maintenance may be more trouble than its initial aesthetic use. For this reason, it’s necessary to get a professional second opinion from the right landscaping experts.

Knowing how to handle the intricacies of every building material is a landscaping expert's job. At HML Construction, our team is adept at using the proper tools to execute your landscaping vision. If you're looking for a capable landscaping company in Edmonton, AB, to beautify your outdoors, contact us today at (780) 460-2088.

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