When landscaping your garden, an ideal way to really open it up and eliminate bare wet areas is to lay a solid and long lasting pathway. Boral explains, in 8 simple steps, how to lay a smooth concrete garden pathway.
- It is critical to creating the shape of your pathway. For straight paths this can be achieved by using a brickies string line tied to wooden pegs, or for curved paths a garden hose can be used.
- Remove grass and excavate to a minimum depth of 125mm to prepare the pathway. For pathways that run close to homes a slight fall should be allowed for so that water can run away.
- Situate wooden pegs at regular intervals along the path and attach timber formwork to them. Pegs should be situated on the outside of the path and be lower than the timber.
The formwork defines the final height and shape of the pathway. Steel reinforcement mesh may also be necessary.
- If the path is on an uneven or clay base the likelihood of the concrete cracking is reduced by laying a firm base for it to rest on. Place a 50mm layer of sand or road base, forming an even bedding for concrete.
- Mix the concrete, following instructions, and pour it inside the formwork. Spread and compact the concrete as you go.
Use a smooth straight piece of timber to level concrete. With the leading edge slightly raised, pull the timber back along the formwork, using a side to side sawing motion.
Finish by lightly tapping the outside edges of the formwork with a hammer. This will vibrate the concrete in against formwork.
- Once the concrete path is firm to the touch, finish the surface using either a wooden float if a non slip finish is desired, or for a smooth finish use a steel trowel.
Use a steel edging tool to finish off the edges, providing a chip free professional finish.
- Ensure that nobody walks on the concrete for at least 24 hours once finished.
- Cure the concrete by keeping it moist over a period of seven days. Curing ensures that the concrete reaches its full strength and durability.
Visit the Boral website for helpful diagrams, further information and to find out about its concrete mixing products.