• In this video, This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook explains how to lay a bluestone patio.


    1 Spread several inches of pack material across patio area.
    2 Rake the pack material smooth, then tamp with a plate compactor.
    3 Mix seven parts stone dust with one part Portland cement; add just enough water to hydrate the mixture.
    4 Spread enough cement mixture to set three or four stones.
    5 Set stones onto the 4-inch-thick cement setting base and tap them down with rubber mallet.
    6 Continue spreading the cement setting base and setting stones, making sure to slope the patio away from the house.
    • Difficulty: Hard
      Moving heavy slabs of stone is never easy.
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      Video Directory

      Selected Topic/Section

      Tools List

      • plate compactor
        Plate compactor,
        rental item used to tamp pack material
      • mallet
        Rubber mallet,
        for pounding bluestone into setting base
      • four-foot level
        4-foot level,
        used to level bluestone slabs
      • pointing trowel
        Pointed trowel,
        for smoothing cement setting base
      • wheelbarrow
        for mixing stone dust and cement
      • trenching shovel
        for moving cement and pack material
      • metal garden rake
        for smoothing pack material

      Shopping List

      1. Bluestone

      2. Pack material, crushed stone

      used to create stable base for patio

      3. Stone dust and Portland cement,

      mixed together to create setting base for bluestone

      4. Wood stakes and mason's string,

      used to create layout lines for bluestone