Replace Cracked concrete patio and walkways

PauleneAugust 28, 2013

I have a cracked patio and walkways surrounding a 1962 ranch house in Orange and was thinking about breaking up the patio and walkways and adding rock to make them more interesting. In otherwords, go with the cracks and make them a design element. The cement is very slippery when wet! So I want to solve that issue, too.

The house is on a slab, which seems ok, but the patios were huge slabs without reinforcement or stress joints.
Or, I could go with large architectural cement pavers and stone for a more modern look....

Is this even possible and would there be a drainage issue??
Thank you.

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    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 11:31AM
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"Or, I could go with large architectural cement pavers and stone for a more modern look....

Is this even possible and would there be a drainage issue??"

"Large pavers and stone" is so vague that I can't tell for certain what that look is. There are lots of different large pavers and lots of different stone and forms of stone. I also can't picture the situation from the verbal description alone. Why don't you add some pictures that show the problem paving relative to the house? And sure, there could be drainage issues (depending on how you do things) so that's another reason why you should show how the paved areas relate to the structure.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 2:39PM
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deviant-deziner(Oh zone)

Sounds like you have an 'urbanite' project on your hands.
That's arch-i-speak for the product known as recycled cracked concrete.

I think you have a variety of creative options that will give completely different looks.

1. - If you choose to work with your existing cracked concrete in place you can use a dry lay or a wet set technique of laying colored pebbles in between the cracks- this give a more rustic hand-made look. For great inspirational images google the work of Jeffery Bale. ( his blog is quite wonderful too ) Fine Gardening Magazine interviewed him several years ago and he provided a "How to" article for them which is as wonderful as he is .

The second option is to saw cut the existing concrete into manageable square or rectangle sizes and refit them into a grid like pattern. This will render a fairly modern look. You can then fill in between them with groundcover plants or pebbles or tumbled glass or tumbles terracotta .
Take note that depending on how thick your original concrete was poured that these newly cut squares or rectangles are going to weigh a sh!t load.
A 3x3 foot section could potentially weight close to 200 lbs.
If you go with this method I would definitely have a massage therapist lined up at the end of the project.

If the concrete is too slippery as you mentioned you have a couple of options to roughen it up : sandblast or acid wash. Both techniques will change the color a bit .

As far as drainage goes - I really don't like to give any advice on these forums because one really needs to see the site to fully understand what one is up against. There are just too many variables when dealing with drainage to take into account to provide you with accurate and sound advice.

If you decide to take a modern approach to cutting the concrete check out the work of Shirley Watts and her 'blue garden'. Another example of a designer who is wonderfully creative and produces works of art form the landscape. -

... and one last bit of inspiration from another landscape designer who sculpts gardens ..check out the photo site of David Feix. He has done some very exciting work with coloring concrete slabs and installing colored Indonesian pebbles in between the colored slabs. link -

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 3:31PM
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duplicate post (who knows why??) deleted.

This post was edited by Yardvaark on Fri, Aug 30, 13 at 12:45

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 11:32PM
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