The Homeowner’s Guide To Building A Rockery
During the warm months of summer, many of us turn our attention to our back yards and gardens, eager to be out in the sunshine and working with our hands after a long day of being cooped up in an office. Adding a rockery to your back yard will increase the value and beauty you’ll enjoy while working and relaxing.
Current landscaping trends are encouraging the construction of rockeries in many urban and suburban lawns, as these areas are very easily maintained and cared for. Homeowners that are unfamiliar with lawn care, or simply lack the available time to devote long hours throughout the year to their back yards, can find that a rockery is an excellent way to allow experimentation with a green thumb without hours of labor and gardening skills.
Where Should You Build A Rockery?
Choosing where to build your rockery is your first step. Perhaps you already have a part of your lawn in mind!
The best locations are gently to moderately sloping hills and in part-to-full sun. Wide, flat spaces may also accommodate a rockery, however, you will find it more challenging to ensure that it blends into your garden space naturally. Railway sleepers may be used to add height or contours.Water features, such as fountains and ponds are very visually attractive, as well as appealing to the auditory senses.
Keep in mind that the more features you add to your rockery, such as water features, retaining walls, and additional landscaping will exponentially increase the labor involved. It is especially important that, if you are considering water features or retaining walls, to investigate possible permits that may be required. We recommend having a landscaping company install both of these complicated additions.
Choose Your Rockery Stone
Choosing your rockery stone will primarily depend upon the style that you are hoping to achieve. A natural look will be best complemented by rough hewn stones, such as crushed or graded limestone. Modern styles will be visually optimized by white gravel, polished granite, or marble stones.
Look at our guide to rockery stones here for additional inspiration!
Choose Your Rockery Plants
This will largely depend upon the location of your rockery and how much sun it receives. Shaded areas will accommodate hostas, impatiens, and other types of shade plants. Because rockeries generally have good drainage and lots of sun, many plants will be able to thrive in them. Ground covers are a frequent choice, as these plants generally require little maintenance.
Before you begin building your rockery, take time to research what plants you may wish to have in your rockery. How much sun will they tolerate? How much care will they need? What type of soil is required? Once you’ve drafted a list of possibilities, take it to your rockery designer or to a local greenhouse to ask a professional for their input on your ideas.
Also, look at our list of some of our favorite low maintenance rockery plants!