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


    1. Lay out garden hoses to represent the shape of the 3-foot-wide path.
    2. Use shovel and edger to cut alongside the hoses to mark the walkway onto the ground; remove hoses when done.
    3. Dig out 4 to 6 inches of topsoil from within the pathway area.
    4. Cut any roots you encounter with loppers.
    5. Install steel edging along the edges of path; tap in spikes to secure the edging.
    6. Cut slots into 2x4 spreaders to span the path and hold the steel edging in position.
    7. Line the excavated pathway with landscape fabric.
    8. Cover the landscape fabric with 4 to 6 inches of pea gravel.
    9. Smooth the gravel with a garden rake.
    • Difficulty: Moderate to hard
      depending on the hardness of the soil
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      Video Directory

      Selected Topic/Section

      Tools List

      • pointed shovel
        Shovel, used to cut outline of path into the ground
      • edger
        Edger, used to cut outline of path into the ground
      • 100-foot tape measure
        Tape measure
      • hammer
      • metal garden rake
        Garden rake,
        used to smooth gravel
      • hand saw
        used to cut groove into edge of 2x4 stretchers

      Shopping List

      1. 2x4,
      used as a spreader to span steel edging

      2. Steel edging and spikes

      3. Pea gravel

      4. Garden hoses,
      used to layout path