Paving stones or interlocking brick as they are often called look beautiful when installed properly. They really add value to your landscaping in Calgary. Preparation is everything, so take your time and prepare to sweat a bit. It is very important to thoroughly plan where your paving stones are going to go on your property. Will they be impeding on anything of importance such as roots from surrounding trees ? You can use marking paint or even a garden hose to get an idea of how your paving stones are going to look. The great thing about spraying marking paint on dirt is that it is easily erased with a kick of your foot. So, you can play around with curves and angles to see what kind of look best suites you and your property. It is important to remember that the more curves or angles you will have in your paving stone walkway or patio the more cuts you will have to make. Cuts take time and also take more bricks or paving stones. As well, if you need precise cuts then you’ll want to rent a concrete saw with a diamond blade. The hand held gas powered variety works well but for straighter cuts try the upright electric or gas. Either of these are available at your local landscaping tool rental store in Calgary.
When you excavate your area you can count on a fair bit of material coming out of the excavation. You can use this material for fill under decks, or if it is good soil it could be used in flower beds, otherwise you may have to haul it out. If the paving stones will only be used for walking on you only need to excavate about 4-6″ if the will be used for parking a vehicle on it is best to excavate 8-12″. Always excavate 6″ wider or so than you intend your paving stones to be, this will give you room to work when installing the base.
Adding the paving stone base
¾” Crush gravel or road crush as it is commonly called is the same material used to build a highway. This will be your base along with sand later for your paving stones. Add a few inches of gravel at a time, wet lightly with garden hose, and tamp with a gas powered vibrating plate tamper. Leave the gravel base short of your desired height about 2 inches or so to allow for the sand layer you will be adding next. Add the sand base next using standard play sand, add enough sand to bring you to the level you want your paving stones to be at. As you see in the video, they use pipes to screed the sand. This is an excellent method to ensure the sand is perfectly graded and ready for pavers. You can plastic pvc pipe or steel pipes. Only screed one section at a time using to pipes as seen in the video. For proper drainage leave your pavers above the surrounding ground about an inch so that water does not pool in the low spots on the paving stones.
Lay your paving stones
You can begin in one corner or one end of your project and start laying paving stones by offsetting their seams. There are a number of different patterns you can use and you can also use different paving stone borders or soldier courses. Click here to see paving stone patterns, and soldier courses. For angled cuts you can use a large yard stick or straight edge to run across the pavers and drawing a pencil line across the top. Remove the paving stones to cut and replace them after cutting. Walk along your installed paving stones to install the others, never stepping on the sand or disturbing your finished grade.
Paving Stones Brochure