Most people will have concrete included in their landscaped garden somewhere. It may be the driveway, a patio, pathway or even a flowerbed. Concrete is a very versatile substance and, if laid properly, is incredibly durable. It can also be molded into different shapes, styles and finishes, as well as painted or stained to create just the right look in your garden.
Once you have decided to have an area concreted you will need to identify the best contractor to use locally. If you live in the Birmingham area you may wish to use the services of Outdoor Construction Services LLC; they have an excellent reputation and a well-designed website – outdoor.construction. No matter where you live you should be able to find a contractor which has positive feedback and can help you.
Preparing the Site
As with most jobs the vital stage is the preparation. You may opt to do this yourself and simply ask the contractor to supply the concrete and pump it into position. If this is the case then you will need to know how to prepare the site:
- Mark the area you wish to concrete. This should be done accurately and, ideally, with some tape to ensure you are always working in the right area.
- Access is essential, you will need to access it and the concrete contractor will need to park his truck relatively close before bringing his pipe to the location. You may need to check on the length of pipe your contractor has to plan the best access option. Having an access option will also allow you to minimize the dirt and mess carried across the garden and potentially into the house.
- You will then need to dig the specified area. It will need to be dug to a specified dept all the way across and you must get to raw earth; any old concrete, rocks or stones will need to be removed. It is possible to complete this stage by hand, although, if it is a large area you may prefer to hire digging equipment, such as a mini digger to assist you in shifting the soil. You will also need to consider where the soil and rubble you remove is going to go. Do you have somewhere else in your garden to put it or do you need a skip?
- Next after the area has been dug you will need to create a good sub base. This is usually made with small stones and pebbles and it is usually recommended to be at least four inches thick, you can go thicker if you know the area will be used extensively by vehicles. This stage must be done properly to ensure the concrete sets properly and any frost does not cause the concrete to lift in the future.
- Finally, your area will need to be ‘formed’. This means creating the boundary which the concrete needs to stay within. This is usually made out of wood and can be removed once the concrete has set fully. The forming should also include an allowance for natural draining, if necessary.
You are now ready for your concrete contractor to pour your concrete into place and watch your garden or driveway to be transformed!