You work hard to keep weeds and grass out of your raised garden beds, so why let them take over the paths? Clear pathways make it easier to access and work in your garden, while also preventing the spread of weeds into the beds themselves. Concrete patio pavers are a simple and inexpensive way to create these permanent paths.
Go the Distance
The distance between garden beds and the width of your paths is up to you, but there are some things you will want to keep in mind. If you use a garden cart, wheelbarrow, or wheeled garden seat, make sure your paths are large enough to easily accommodate these tools.
Two feet is the minimum distance you should consider, since this gives you enough room to move between the beds. Three feet is even better, since this will allow you to bring in the above tools. For gardeners that also use wheelchairs, 3 feet is the absolute minimum. Keep in mind, as your garden thrives the plants will spill over the sides of the bed and lessen the width of your paths somewhat.
Keeping your paths weed-free requires a well-made base, so begin by digging deep. Remove the top 7 inches of soil from the paths, along with any sod or weeds. Line the paths with a layer of landscape fabric, following by a 4-inch thick layer of gravel. The combination of fabric and gravel will beat the weeds, provide a sturdy base, and allow for drainage.
Make sure the gravel is level, and then cover it with a 1 inch thick layer of paver sand. The sand will also require thorough leveling before you can proceed.
Your paths are now ready for the pavers. When setting the concrete pavers in place, leave a 1/4-inch space between each stone. It's best to plan out the path layout so you only use whole pavers, but if you need to cut some to fit, you can using either a chisel or a table saw equipped with a masonry blade. Just make sure you wear safety glasses and cut carefully.
Once the pavers are in place, fill in the joints between them with more sand. Sweep off the excess sand and your paths are ready for use. As long as you replenish the sand in the joints periodically, your paver garden paths will remain weed-free and in good repair. For more information, contact companies like Sterling Landscape.