Creating a Landscape That Pops: Concrete Tips and Ideas

Your outdoor landscaping makes your first impression, it creates a relaxation zone for your family, and it can boost your property values. Landscaping involves lots of different elements including concrete. Hi, my name is Diane, and I love landscaping. However, I also love patios, magical pathways, sports courts and other concrete creations. Want help creating your fabulous outdoor space? Want help with concrete ideas in particular? Then, I would love to be there for you. I have a keen eye for decoration and have helped a lot of friends create their outdoor areas. I hope my tips and ideas can help you.

Decorative Concrete Options to Consider for Your Driveway


If you plan to lay a new concrete driveway for your home, you could cover the area with decorative concrete. Various techniques can cover the paving with colours, patterns and textures. Here are several options to consider.


Rather than resorting to grey pavement, you could consider coloured concrete. A range of earthy hues are available to give the paving a natural appearance. For example, select from grey, dusky blue, gold or red shades. Many of these colours are reminiscent of natural substances. For instance, the gold is suggestive of sandstone, the grey colours look like slate and the reddish tones evoke clay earth. Thus, a coloured driveway will blend with your garden and house. You could also choose vivid colours if you prefer a different look. Because the pigments are mixed into the cement before it's poured, the colour doesn't flake or chip.


Instead of opting for a uniform colour over the driveway, you might prefer to add patterns. Contractors can do this using stencils. These are available in many designs, such as cobble brick, octagon tile and herringbone paver designs. Firstly, the concrete is poured. Then, contractors apply a releasing agent before carefully aligning the stencils across the paving, so the edges match. The stencils hide some areas of the concrete and reveal other parts. Thus, when the colour hardener is applied, it only affects the exposed areas, which creates patterns.

For example, a charcoal coloured concrete slab could be poured over the entire driveway. From there, stencils could be applied that mimic a brickwork running bond pattern. Then reddish colours may be applied on top. Once the stencils are removed, the driveway will look like red brickwork with grey grout lines. Stencils create designs, but the surface remains flat, as the pattern is made using colour only.


Another possibility is to add texture to the concrete. Rather than using stencils that hide selected concrete areas, contractors press stamps or moulds onto unset concrete. They use their body weight to push the mould on the driveway to leave indents, grooves and textures in the concrete. A releasing agent which is applied underneath the stamps stops them from sticking as they're lifted off. The concrete will be left to dry for several days before being washed to remove excess debris. Stamping is usually combined with colouring techniques to mimic different surfaces, such as a slate or cobblestone driveway. Regardless of which decorating look you opt for, the contractors will usually apply a couple of coats of sealants to protect the surface and bring out the colours.

To learn more, contact a concreter.


27 September 2021