Proper install for flagstone steps & walkway?
We are having a 3' wide natural cleft PA Bluestone walkway in a random pattern installed. We are also installing a stoop for our back door and a few steps in the walkway to adjust for the elevation between our home and the street.
Want to make sure the contractors we are evaluating are doing this installation properly.
We are looking at dry-laid for the walkway since we are in Zone 6 and do get freeze-thaw weather. We have two steps we need to incorporate into the walkway as well as a back stoop. One contractor is recommending a poured concrete base for the steps and stoop. Another contractor is saying that is a costly way to do it and would build the steps and stoop using masonry block, fill it with stone, and then lay flagstone treads over it. Are both of these methods acceptable?
Walkway - Is there a proper method for install? Different contractors are quoting different methods. What is optional or overkill and what is necessary?
Should the soil be tampered prior to installing base stone?
Landscaping fabric - Necessary?
Landscape edging - Necessary?
Base stone - how much? Is 4" of crushed rock tampered every 2" acceptable? What is a good amount?
Granite Sand - 1". Is that enough? Should the sand be tampered?
1.5" Flagstone (2" for the treads)
Fill joints with Polymeric Sand
Is there anything I am missing or should be asking?
Any input would be appreciated.