Advise on rescuing my front garden, please!

7 Nov 2014
Reaction score
United Kingdom
Hi all

I'm looking for some advice on how to deal with my front garden. When we moved in four years ago there was a massive bush and the whole garden was covered in decorative stones (see image). I've chopped the bush down and what I really need is some help in dealing with the decorative stones. They're fine but there's lots of organic matter mixed in with them and weeds grow like wildfire every year.

What I would like to do is plant some easy-to-care-for bushes/shrubs/decorative grasses around but still keep a lot of the stones as an easy way to cover the space. Is it possible to rescue the stones - maybe wash the organic matter off them, re-membrane the ground and add the stones back on? Should I just flood the garden with weedkiller? How long does weedkiller take to break down and will other plants suffer if planted after weedkiller application?

Looking for any landscaping tips and advice! The central bit where the bush was is fine, I'm going to apply stump killer, dig out as much as I can and plant a few simple things in there. What do I do about the vast area of decorative stones?

Many thanks

Sponsored Links
It’s tedious to clean stones like that.
If you really want to try a “one-off” cleaning operation, I’d be tempted to try to make something like an archaeologist’s shaking table (see e.g.
) but add some water. The whole family can help!
Once it’s clean, to keep it clean, if you get a garden vac you can blow leaves off before they start to rot.
I wouldn’t use weedkiller unless you have perenial weeds like brambles or nettles.
Going over it with a rake periodically (a small, solid one) will disrupt annual weeds.
Membrane is not much use for stopping weeds; they germinate from seeds that blow in.
As for plnts - just go to the garden centre and see what grabs your fancy. Don’t try to fill it all at once; if you do, you’ll have a garden that is interesting for just one month of the year.

DIYnot Local

Staff member

If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.

Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local

Sponsored Links