seeking garden path ideas
I am currently digging the grass out of an area about 60 feet long and roughly 3-4 feet wide. I am a physically weak person with "spaghetti arms", so this will take me a few days. There are established, mulched gardens on either side of this future path. I'd like to keep the weeds to a minimum and have a nice, walkable material to cover the path. I am also going to pound in some of those Gardener's Supply connectable slats that define the path.
Money is an issue and there is absolutely no way I could ever afford things like flagstones, or anything like concrete pavers. What do you think of using some colored mulch, like the black or red variety? The mulch in the adjacent gardens is cypress bark, turning silver, so I'd like a contrasting color for impact. I've heard that the colored mulches can be bad for plants because they are often made with home renovation wood that is then spray painted and may have old lead paint or other chemicals in it. Is it safe for a walkway with plants on either side?
I MIGHT be able to afford some super cheap pebbles or gravel. I've heard that using pebbles on a path can be a bad idea because tree leaves and "helicopters" and such get in and it's a pain to get them out. Is this your experience?
Am not asking for a pity party, but I'll be doing all this by myself and don't want to make any huge planning or monetary pitfalls, since I'd like this path to be pretty permanent and not require a whole lot of maintenance.
Please write with any suggestions!
Thank you, Libby