How To Lay Gravel On Soil Like A Pro [Step-By-Step]

Are you looking to spruce up your outdoor space with a low-maintenance, budget-friendly landscaping solution?

If so, look no further than gravel! Not only is gravel a versatile and durable material, but it can also add a stylish and modern touch to your garden, walkway, or patio.

However, laying gravel on soil requires proper preparation and technique to ensure long-lasting results.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about how to lay gravel on soil, from selecting the right type of gravel to properly installing and maintaining it.

So whether you’re a seasoned landscaper or a beginner DIY enthusiast, read on to learn how to transform your outdoor space with the power of gravel!

Materials And Tools Needed

Before you get started, you’ll need to gather some tools and materials.

Here’s a list of what you’ll need:

  • Shovel: You’ll need a sturdy shovel to dig up any grass or weeds in the area where you’ll be laying the gravel.
  • Rake: A metal garden rake will help you level out the soil and remove any debris or rocks.
  • Wheelbarrow: This will come in handy for transporting the gravel from the delivery point to the installation area.
  • Tamper: A tamper is a tool that helps to compact the soil and create a level surface for the gravel.
  • Landscape fabric: This will help prevent weeds from growing through the gravel and keep it looking clean and tidy.
  • Gravel: Of course, you’ll need the gravel itself. Be sure to choose a type that suits your needs and aesthetic preferences.
  • Edging material: Optional, but recommended if you want to keep the gravel contained in a specific area. This can be anything from bricks to plastic or metal edging.

Here at TW Aggregates, we have a range of gravel, decorative aggregates, and soil available for your project. We deliver our products all across the United Kingdom.


Before you start laying your gravel, it’s important to prepare the area properly.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Clear the area: Remove any grass, weeds, or debris from the area where you’ll be laying the gravel. Use a shovel or garden fork to loosen the soil and remove any roots or rocks.
  2. Level the soil: Use a rake to level out the soil and create a smooth, even surface. This will help prevent uneven settling and ensure that your gravel stays in place.
  3. Compact the soil: Use a tamper to compact the soil, creating a firm foundation for your gravel. This will help prevent sinking or shifting over time.
  4. Add landscape fabric: To help prevent weeds from growing through your gravel, add a layer of landscape fabric over the soil. Cut the fabric to size and lay it down, securing it with landscape fabric stakes or pins.
  5. Install edging: If you want to contain your gravel within a specific area, now is the time to install edging. Place your edging material around the perimeter of your installation area, securing it in place with stakes or pins.

With these steps completed, your area will be ready for the next stage of laying your gravel on soil!

How To Lay Gravel On Soil

Now that you’ve prepared the area, it’s time to start laying your gravel!

Here are step-by-step instructions for the installation process:

  1. Start with a layer of gravel: Begin by spreading a layer of gravel over the landscape fabric, starting at one end and working your way to the other. Aim for a depth of 2-3 inches for decorative purposes, or up to 4 inches if you’re using the gravel for drainage.
  2. Use a rake to distribute the gravel: Use a metal rake to spread the gravel evenly across the area, creating a smooth, level surface. Take care to avoid any low spots or high spots that may cause water pooling or runoff.
  3. Compact the gravel: Use a tamper to compact the gravel, creating a firm surface that won’t shift or settle over time. Work in small sections, moving the tamper back and forth over the gravel until it feels solid and stable.
  4. Repeat the process: Once you’ve compacted the first layer of gravel, add another layer and repeat the process until you’ve achieved the desired depth. Remember to compact each layer as you go.

Tips for achieving an even distribution of gravel:

  1. Use a wheelbarrow: Transporting the gravel in a wheelbarrow will help ensure an even distribution, as you can spread it out more easily and accurately.
  2. Work in small sections: Laying the gravel in small sections will make it easier to distribute evenly and avoid any low or high spots.
  3. Use a level: If you’re having trouble achieving an even surface, use a level to check the grade and make adjustments as needed.
  4. Take your time: Laying gravel can be a time-consuming process, but taking your time and being thorough will help ensure a long-lasting and beautiful finished product.

With these tips and instructions, you’ll be able to lay your gravel on soil like a pro!


Congratulations, you’ve successfully laid your gravel on soil!

To ensure your new surface looks great for years to come, it’s important to properly maintain it. Here’s how:

  1. Rake the surface regularly: Regularly raking the surface of your gravel will help keep it looking neat and uniform, while also preventing the build-up of debris and organic matter.
  2. Use a leaf blower: If you have a large gravel surface, using a leaf blower can be an efficient way to remove debris and keep the surface looking clean.
  3. Address drainage issues: If you notice standing water on your gravel surface, it’s important to address the drainage issue as soon as possible to prevent erosion and damage to the surface.
  4. Install edging: Installing edging around your gravel surface can help prevent the gravel from spilling over onto surrounding areas, while also providing a clear boundary between the gravel and other landscaping features.

Tips for preventing weeds and other unwanted growth:

  1. Use a weed barrier: Installing a weed barrier under your gravel surface can help prevent weeds and other unwanted growth from sprouting up.
  2. Use a pre-emergent herbicide: Applying a pre-emergent herbicide before laying the gravel can help prevent weeds and other unwanted growth from taking root.
  3. Remove any growth as soon as it appears: If you do notice any weeds or other growth starting to appear on your gravel surface, remove it as soon as possible to prevent it from spreading.

By following these maintenance tips and taking proactive measures to prevent unwanted growth, you’ll be able to enjoy your new gravel surface for years to come!

How To Lay Gravel On Soil Conclusion

In conclusion, laying gravel on soil is a great way to create a low-maintenance and visually appealing landscaping feature.

By following the steps outlined in this post, you’ll be able to lay your gravel with confidence and achieve a professional-looking result.

Remember to start by gathering the necessary tools and materials. Then, lay the gravel in even layers and compact it using a tamper or roller.

To properly maintain your gravel surface, be sure to rake it regularly, address any drainage issues, and consider using edging to prevent spillage.

Additionally, take proactive measures to prevent unwanted growth, such as installing a weed barrier or applying a pre-emergent herbicide.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy your new gravel surface for years to come.

We hope this post has been informative and helpful in guiding you through the process of laying gravel on soil.

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