Small Front Yard Walkway

by Bonnie
(Ontario, Canada)




We have a small front yard, about 29 feet from the public sidewalk. We live in a upscale neighborhood of old brick Victorians, but our home is more of a cottage look board and batten with one walkway up the front to the door.

We'd like to change the walk to a curved one and add one to our drive way. Any suggestions as to how to make low maintenance but pretty?

Answer

Hi Bonnie,
I love Victorian homes.

Just to clarify, are you looking for a suggestion for a low maintenance material for the walkway? If so, what color is your house? If not, please explain further.

You can respond by clicking on the "Comments" below.

Thanks,
Susan

Comments for Small Front Yard Walkway

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old stone house
by: Anonymous

We have a small front yard full of wood chips & perennials. With 2 small kids I need something with low maintenance. I would like to put some type of walkway as right now we have square patio stones.....

thank you
E. Holman
Walkerton, Ont

ANSWER
I'm not sure what kind of square patio stone you have, but you have many options for a walkway.
1. Bluestone stepping stones - these can be set in mulch or lawn.
2. Loose stone such as pea gravel or river rock. I would edge this with steel edging to hold the stones in place. This is economical, but will need some maintenance as the stones will have to be replenished.
3. A typical structured walkway. There are many materials you can use...concrete, pavers, bluestone, or brick. Pavers are dry laid, while the bluestone or brick can be dry laid or set in concrete.
Take a look at my page:
Walkway Designs

Susan

Walkway Ideas
by: Susan

Hi Bonnie,
As far as walkway ideas go, nothing is great when it comes to shoveling snow, unless you use concrete. However, this can crack over time and repairs never look just right.

I would consider real brick or pavers.

The brick would be a contrast to your house colors and is a traditional type of material. It can look old fashioned. Pine Hall brick makes a nice one called rumbled which has a few different shadings of color in it. I like brick since it's a natural material, and Pine Hall brick is extremely hard and durable. I would dry lay it.

Tumbled pavers are another option. You could use a gray color, but a blend with different shades. You could even add in a few taupe colored ones for a very blended look. Many companies have these colors, and I would suggest picking up samples and bringing them to your house to see how the color looks.

As far as design...
A nice idea is to create the more important curved walkway from the street and a "secondary walkway from the garage. Make your front walk three to four feet wide. The walk to the driveway can be different by changing the width.

For hot and sunny conditions, the following plants would do well:
Sedum 'Autum Joy' - perennial
Nepeta 'Walker's Low' - perennial
Red Barberry 'Crimson Pygmy'
Juniper
Lavender 'Hidcote' - perennial
Spirea 'Little Princess'
English Spreading Yew
Butterfly Bush
Lilac 'Miss Kim'

Good luck!
Susan



Small Front Yard Walkway
by: Bonnie

Hi Susan,

Yes, suggestions for the walkways please. We get very cold winters so they need to be shovelable. I gave you the incorrect size of the yard, it's actually about 20 ft from the public sidewalk, so we are very close to the street.

Our board and batten is a dark taupe colour with black roof and garage doors, trim in very dark grey.

Any suggestions for low maintenance plants for this small yard? It faces west so it's hot and dry in the summer and daily watering is not possible.

If we put in both a curved walkway and a walkway leading from the driveway to the front porch, it means 2 walkways in this small hard and I'd like it to look soft and welcoming.

Any ideas would be appreciated.

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"Susan,  what a pleasure it was to work with you.  You made me feel like I was your only client - responding late at night and always so quickly!  Your design is amazing and we only hope we can do justice to it when we plant.  You have such fantastic ideas and you are so open to suggestions and changes.  Loved working with you - now if you could only come to Canada and plant it!!!"
Helen, Ontario-Canada 

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