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Want To Go Xeriscape? Start With Some Rocky Additions

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Are you looking for an easy way to transition your thirsty yard to a less water-intensive and more earth-friendly style? Rocks are one of the surest and simplest ways to do so. They come in many shapes, sizes and colors and give you an immediate entry point into the world of xeriscape landscape design. If you're not sure where to begin with rocks, here are 5 simple ways to start incorporating them on any budget. 

Start a Rock Garden. Try replacing a section of well-lit greenery with an attractive rock garden. A few small boulders (which are usually placed in odd-numbered groupings) can be combined with low-growing plants (like portaluca) or climbing plants (like morning glory) to provide color. 

Replace Mulch. One of the simplest and most obvious ways to add rock to your yard is to replace mulch, wood chips or other bases you use around plants and flower gardens. Rocks provide a more durable and long-lasting garden base and help highlight your flowers by providing a nice contrast color. 

Create a Stream. A fake dry riverbed creates an interesting focal point in any yard. You can even use it to divert runoff water to a more useful part of the yard or to add drainage in problem areas. You can complement your fake stream with great architectural features like a rock grotto or a small bridge. 

Start Pathways. Adding a walkway or path to your yard serves two purposes: it lets you landscape a portion of space with hardscaping and it helps add to the functionality and accessibility of your overall yard. Blend new paths into your existing yard theme by choosing an appropriate rock and pattern. Flagstones, for example, add a natural randomness that's more casual than square pavers. Pea gravel or pebbles form solid but warm and inviting walkways. If your pathways don't have a logical destination, add one with a bubbling fountain, birdbath or a set of bistro chairs and table. 

Add to Your Entertainment Space. The right boulders can serve as an enhancement to your outdoor entertaining spaces. A well-shaped boulder can serve as overflow seating or a surface to use for decorative features like color pots. Gravel can be laid beyond the existing patio or deck to add functional space for entertaining or to decorate with containers. Or use large (and fire-resistant) river rock as a base for an outdoor fire pit or fireplace.  

As you can see, rocks and boulders serve many different purposes and solve many landscaping problems. Whether you can incorporate just one or two of these ideas or you can go all-out with your stone additions, the result will be a lower-maintenance, water-saving and still beautiful yard. Visit http://bourgetbros.com for more information.