River rock is one of the most beautiful and versatile landscaping materials. It can work just as well in natural, rustic landscapes as it does in modern, clean landscapes. You can mix river rocks with other materials to create great color and texture effects. Still, using rocks in your landscape is a less common skill than placing plants. You might find it hard to incorporate river rocks in a way you’re happy with. We’re here to help. Here are seven landscaping tips for river rock that you can use to create the landscape you want.

1. Edge Gardens

That line between the flower bed and the grass can be hard to maintain. Grass tries to creep up into the beds. That is unless you have something there to stop it. River rock is a great choice to line beds and reduce their maintenance needs and add texture. They look more natural and less ordered than other materials you might use to edge gardens, like interlocking.

2. Alternate Textures

Do you use mulch in the garden? Mulch adds a lot of intricate texture, and so do fern-like plants, mosses, and bushes. Medium and large river rocks are smooth and bring a whole different character of texture to your space. They are a great choice to alternate with all those features with more intricate textures. Small river rocks have a more detailed texture themselves, so they work well with smoother materials and plants.

3. Create Streams

River rock is the most natural choice for stream beds. Whether long or short, river rocks make your personal river or stream more authentic and easier to maintain. We specialize in water features, so we can help you choose the best size, type and color or river rock to make your stream look just right.

Don’t forget that you can add rock streams or riverbeds to gardens and lawns without adding water. These dry streams look lovely and help you use less water in your landscaping.

4. Choose the Right Size

River rocks are available in a range of sizes, each of which has a different effect. Smaller rocks are more common as background features. You’d use them as you’d use mulch, but around hardscaping features more commonly than around plants. Larger rocks are more like features themselves. Place them where you’d place plants.

5. Add Near Annuals

Is your front yard beautiful all year round? You can make it so with river rocks. They don’t change with the seasons and can take over being the centrepiece of your space when plants are dormant or when your annuals have died.

front yard river rock flower garden

6. Create Pathways

Pathways made with large river rocks look charming and natural, especially when compared with concrete pathways or those made with interlocking. To make the pathway a little more accessible for those with mobility issues, you can Make the path out of flagstone and add small river rock around each stone.

7. Combine Wood and Stone

Stone and wood pair well together, as they both provide neutral color and texture. Large river rocks look great lining wooden decks or beneath wooden trellises.

There are many more ways to use river rocks in your landscape. Get professional advice from the experts at Chuck’s Landscaping.