Build A Stone Walkway In A Day DIY

Over the past year my yard has sunk about six inches lower than my driveway thanks to sodium bentonite.  Considering that my yard is constantly buzzing with kids, this could be dangerous if someone rolled an ankle shooting hoops or playing kickball.

The other day while my little minions and I were working on the garden I decided we should remedy the situation.  See how far it had sunk?  Time to build a raised walkway.

Mom's little helpers

The first problem to tackle was raising the sprinkler head to be even with the driveway.  Considering it’s attached to an entire underground system, I wanted to be careful and not break it.  That could be a very expensive mistake!

sunken sprinkler head

So, I was off to my local Home Depot to ask the folks there what I needed.  They suggested a riser adapter to attached to the ground pipes and then reattach to the existing sprinkler head.  Make sure you’ve dismantled it first so you know if you need male or female pieces. It worked perfect.  See below.

raising a sprinker head

Next we hauled in gravel to fill in the low spots. The plan was to extend the garden and build a flagstone walkway along the edge of the driveway, giving visitors a place to step when parking there.  I’ve always felt that my yard was nothing but right angles and wanted to soften the lines, so I used a rope to help visualize where I wanted the walkway and garden to go.

string in yard

After a layer of gravel to fill in the low spot, sand was added as a base for the walkway stones. Note how I kept the new sprinkler head uncovered. Good garden soil was also placed for the future garden.

base of stone walkway

Next was a trip to the rock store. All of these were only $14!  Don’t forget to bring gloves or your hands will get torn up.

SUV with stones

I used these long stones to edge the walkway.  If you don’t have a strong wall to hold the stones in, the walkway will fall apart.

base for walkway

Do you like playing Tetris?  Laying the stones to fit can feel a lot like that!  I also had to work around the newly raised sprinkler head.

begin laying stones

Since the water from the sprinkler is needed for the garden, but  would wash out the sand and cause the stones to shift I found this locking sand.  It works like mortar once you wet it down.  (You can find it at your local home improvement store.)

perma sand

Definitely looks better than the sunken yard!

finished walkway