Bluestone is used by contractors in numerous projects, from the stairways of grand buildings to simple patios. Bluestone is a quite versatile material which has many uses, such as constructing patios, walkways, stair treads, walls, decorative boulders, natural steps, and other landscape features. In fact, bluestone is the first choice for constructing beautiful patios, which often comes in neatly sawn rectangles. Moreover, to give a rustic look to the landscape, broken or irregular edged bluestone gives an incredibly natural look.
If you are also planning to add bluestone to your property, you too can create a marvelous gathering space or patio with a little endurance and patience. Laying a long-lasting patio is much about the base underneath it and the layout above. Here we have listed steps of how to lay a simple path or patio using stand-up or cleaved bluestone.
- Measure the perimeter and sketch the layout
First, you need to determine the length and width of the stone path. Purchase the material and stone only after taking the exact area measurements. You need to take care of the drainage, so create proper base grade and slope by using a laser level. You can also mark high and low areas to serve as a guide for excavation and fill. If you already have any stone installed, break it using a sledgehammer and remove the debris from the project site.
- Prepare Base
The second step is to excavate the area inside the edge lines by digging, leveling, and making the soil compact. Make sure that the base is about 7 inches below the finished surface. Moisten the base with water and compact it with a hand or power tamper. Now fill the layers to form a firm 3″ thick compacted gravel base. Make use of road bond for the base to make it compact and seasoned. On the top of the gravel base, spread, and level a 1″ layer of concrete sand. A layer of “fines” or stone dust provides a bed to lay the stone. Moreover, place either metal or concrete edging to keep the material stable.
- Lay Bluestone
Now comes, the actual laying step. In case, you are setting the stone in a particular pattern, make sure to determine how to lay that pattern in advance. If you want to lay the stone in a straight line, set up a guideline along one edge of the walkway. Once you established your pattern, place each stone into the setting bed and use a rubber mallet to make it contact with the sand. It is important to use a masonry line to check that stones are in a level and there is a consistent gap between them to achieve the perfect look.
- Fill Joints
You can make use of a chisel and mallet to remove protrusions. To prevent your stone from breaking beyond the intended area, cut off just a 1/2 inch. Make use of a scrap piece to fill gaps by fracturing it to have a usable form and size. To fill the joints, unload sand onto the walkway by using a sweeper brush and settle it into the joints with the help of water.
Effectively laying bluestone requires a little patience and skills. It is important to pay attention to each and every step to achieve the desired outcome. Bluestone is versatile and has unmatched look which makes it easy to tailor to the customer’s wants and needs. Follow these steps to give your patio or landscape a breathtaking look.