There is an old straight path running up the middle of my garden from the house to the vegetable patch at the back of the garden, approximately 50ft long. The path/garden slopes steadily away from the house.

The garden is mostly lawn at the moment (although I have started installing beds). I have only lived here a couple of years and the lawn has obviously spread over the path over the years and there is nothing visible on the surface other than a sunken walkway. Today, I dug out a short section of the path out to see what was below. The path has a concrete edge and the path itself is made up of quite uneven small blocks of stone - a bit like crazy paving. The path is lower than the surrounding lawn by about 5cm.

I am looking for ideas on what to do next. Do I dig the whole lot out and keep the uneven stone blocks, or could I possibly cover with something and install some tiles/bricks/stepping stones.

Will try to get some pictures up later.


  • CardoonCardoon Posts: 24

    To clarify, I have dug out the thin layer of grass/soil which had grown over the path along a short section, and I am thinking of removing the grass along the rest of the path. I'm just not that satisfied with the uneven stone blocks which are there (although I was expecting an even worse solid concrete path).

  • CardoonCardoon Posts: 24


     Please excuse the parched lawn!

  • CardoonCardoon Posts: 24



  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 19,692

    Hi Cardoon. If you just want to put another path of some sort in there's not much  point lifting what's there so you might as well fill it in to the level you need and put your new paving stones in. If you  just want to have grass, it looks like the grass was already quite happy with the stone underneath so you could probably get away with filling up the 'hole' with more soil and re seeding, then cut out  bits for stepping stones if you want those. If the drainage isn't good because of the stones you're better lifting them though.

  • CardoonCardoon Posts: 24

    Thanks Fairygirl. I'd quite like to have a path rather than turn it over to grass, as it is a well worn route from the house to the veggie patch!

    I think filling the sunken area with gravel or bark etc might not be possible as it would slide down the slope. I had an idea of laying some reclaimed flat roof tiles I have seen down as stepping stones. If I wanted to do this, what would be the best way of laying them on top of the existing path without having to dig it all out?

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 19,692

    Whatever you do you'll have to dig out a bit or refill so that you have a level area to put down your stepping stones. Although you have a slope the path really needs to be level or it'll be hopeless for wheelbarrows etc. no matter what material you use for it.  If you dig away the higher side you can put that along the low side to level it up. You'd also need to have a retaining edge of some kind (as SD describes above) so that you don't get the same problem in future - grass will grow over and reclaim areas whenever it can. That will happen on the higher side in particular. Timber is one of the easiest methods but you could use brick or stone or even make a little concrete edge if you're able, so that your path stays where it's meant to. Not sure how good roof tiles would be - are they not a bit small? If they were an option I think you'd have to treat them like paving - a firm base but then a bit of mortar to keep them in place. Don't think they'd be heavy enough to stay in situ like paving would.

  • PeterE17PeterE17 Posts: 129

    Hi Smokin Donkey

    I suspect you are a soul brother to Le Salvager who laid a path of broken tiles on his plot in France ... hang on ... you could actually be him ... you have been rumbled.

  • cardoon.. that is exactly how the paths in our garden our.. only ours is cheap crazy paving done in concrete and marked out... we are in process of breaking it all up with sledge hammer and using it as base for new paths..

    we are concreteing over the rubble and then layin slabs and gravel.. but as the paths have sunk over the years as only laid on soil.. in places the concrete is 10ins deep to bring it up to level with the lawn and beds..

    it has taken time to decide on a path and now taking alot of time to break up and re do.. but will be worth it in the end..

  • LeadFarmerLeadFarmer Posts: 848

    Try and keep any new path below the level of the lawm, to make mowing easier. 

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