Coming up with stone landscaping ideas is not as hard as you might imagine. Think for a moment about how stone actually works on a natural landscape and you have a starting point on which to start creating on your own.
In the wilderness, stone is the foundational element for every landscape. The argumentative may try to counter this statement by claiming that soil is the foundational element—until they realize that all soil is really crushed stone that has been ground into clay, dirt, or sand over millions of years.
That being said, an understanding of rock as the literal foundation of the earth itself can help us come up with some amazing stone landscaping ideas when we realize that aesthetic foundations on a landscape are just as important as functional foundations.
By this we mean that by adding just a few carefully chosen and well-placed rocks to any scene is guaranteed to add an unconscious sense of strength, power, and balanced design no matter what type of home architecture or landscape design you have.
Let’s begin by looking at something very simple to illustrate this point. Say you have a single family, single story home with a façade that is symmetrical and truly beautiful in its proportional simplicity. Your front porch is well constructed and has endured the test of the last 50+ years without cracking.
However, the essentially linear design of your home’s façade and porch basically present a view consisting of straight lines and angles. If your front yard is already average in size, this creates a sense of constriction when the home is viewed straight on from the street.
By applying a very simple and time-proven stone landscaping idea to the area immediately in front of your porch, we can initiate a new landscape geometry that will progressively expand into your front yard without deviating from the basic principles of your home design.
This technique involves building a structure similar to the ones used in flower beds, where a small containment wall is erected in front of the home and the porch. Instead of filling this area only with flowers and plants, we can create a great deal of geometry with gravel, hand-sized stones, and even a few large ones before later adding the plants.
The key to making this structure truly advantageous to your landscape lies in bending the boundary wall’s linear design into a contoured shape that roughly parallels the front walls and porch of your home but also expands it out into the landscape.
Simple stone landscaping ideas like this illustrate the practicality of an old cliché, “everything starts small.” By beginning with a simple modification of a basic structure, ornamenting it with rocks that add diversity and dimension, and enlarging the sense of presence the home occupies on the Houston landscape we can then continue this expansive theme throughout the front yard.
By the time other elements of the yard have been accented with decorative stonework, the entire property looks enlarged in terms of both size and interest. Similar stone landscaping ideas can be developed along very simple lines that expand like geometry into the infinite realm of creativity and sheer imagination.