The outside of our home is as much of a statement of who we are as the inside is. And though we often think of things like exterior home colors and landscaping, perhaps we don't immediately think of our driveways. But having a beautiful drive can make a difference in first impressions.
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Though a paved drive doesn't leave much room for individual expression, gravel drives offer more options. Yes, they are dusty, and yes, you must replenish them every so often, but maybe they're better than you think. We've compiled twenty-one gorgeous gravel driveway ideas for you to see and decide if gravel is the way you want to go.
1. Edge Your Gravel Driveway With Beautiful Low Flowering Plants
In this lovely brick home, tan-colored small pea gravel is used to create an attractive and neat driveway that works with the red brick color. Along the edges of the drive, small shrubs in various flowering styles are planted to create a green edging. The result is very pleasing and does an excellent job of outlining the drive.
2. Match Your Gravel Color To Your Home If Possible
In this picturesque setting, the circular driveway is simple. The limestone is the same lovely shade of white as the home, so everything works very well together. The green grass near the house provides a continuation of the green inside the circle, which is additional visual continuity.
3. Edge Your Gravel With Vertical Brick
In this beautiful gravel car park area, the edges have been lined with brick. Rather than the traditional horizontal or longways choice of laying, the homeowner has arranged the brick in a vertical pattern with the short ends lining up against the gravel.
Yes, this takes more brick, but you get a wider border, and the look is really neat and lovely. We also see the use of a low shrub wall in green at the edge of the brick.
4. Border Your Long Gravel Drive With A Split Rail Fence
Nothing says picturesque and country like the image of a long curving driveway bordered by a split rail fence. Even if you have a smaller driveway, the use of split rail fencing delivers a particular aesthetic that is undeniable. All you'll need to add is a few handsome sheep to keep your lawn grass neat and tidy behind that fence, and you'll be in business.
5. Add A Cement Border To Your Gravel Driveway
Here's another long gravel drive that is neat as a pin. In this instance, attractive red-toned gravel was chosen. Along the edges, we see a custom cement border that has been poured in place. The advantage to having a border like this is that it can divide the gravel from the grass. It helps keep the gravel in place and also helps keep grass from growing out into your driveway.
6. Create A Formal Entrance For Your Gravel Drive
Just because you've gone with gravel instead of pavement doesn't mean you have to give up glamor and formality. On this driveway, a dual stone wall has been built to frame the entrance to the drive. It's a way to tell visitors they're about to enter a home that's special.
The natural stone may have even be pulled from the surrounding property. And we love the bronze pineapples on the pillars. They only have to tell their visitors to turn in at the pineapples!
7. Set Your Gravel Drive Among A Drapery Of Trees
With gravel, one of the advantages is that it won't crack and buckle if a stray root should come it's way. So why not plant a row of beautiful draping trees along either side of your drive? Though live oaks like these will take years to get to this size, there are other varieties that you can try if you want something more fast-growing. The result is something beautiful, just like this drive.
8. Combine Gravel With Openwork Concrete Pavers
Here's a unique idea for a bit of a hybrid-style driveway. Openwork concrete pavers have been laid, and colorful stone fills the gaps between. Along the edges are a few pebbled planting beds with young trees planted. Eventually, they will get tall and provide gorgeous shade and canopy for the driveway. Look for a product called turf stone if you're interested in this application.
9. Use Strategic Planting Boxes To Separate Home Entrance From The Driveway
Here's a clever idea for creating a clear separation between the driveway and the entry to your home. Utilize square planting boxes to cordon off the entryway. This will ensure that cars do not drive onto any ramp or sidewalk you have for access to your home. These planting boxes in concrete are both sturdy, functional, and attractive. The taller woody plants provide some visual separation as well.
10. Use A Natural Stone Edging For Your Gravel Driveway
Natural stone looks at home in most rural or suburban landscapes. Here long, narrow chunks of stone have been used to create an edging for this drive. The reason to have an edging is multi-purposed. One, it holds the gravel in place and keeps it from littering the lawn or garden beds. And two, it looks neat and crisp.
11. Match Your Sidewalk To Your Driveway
If your driveway is gravel, why not match your sidewalk to it? Here the two entrances to the house are pleasingly symmetrical. The march of boxwood shrubs that lines them further emphasizes this orderly home exterior. If you like crisp lines and angles, then this look might work for your home's exterior style.
12. Create A Beautiful Entryway From Your Front Door To Meet Your Driveway
When also used as parking areas at the front of the home, Gravel drives invoke English manors. If you love that look and want to create that feeling for your own home, you should consider the entryway.
Here, a double door is painted a rich marine blue. From the step, you walk onto a simple half-circle of pavers that meet the gravel. Elegant square planters frame the entry with creatively pruned shrubs filling the boxes.
13. Keep Things Simple And Have The Gravel Meet The Side Of Your Home
Not a gardener? Don't want to deal with plants and weeds and all of the work that goes with landscaping? Then this idea might be for you. Rather than have beds or borders that separate your home from the gravel drive and parking area, why no have the gravel run right up to your home. If you choose beautiful stone and lay a concrete stoop and sidewalk, you'll create a simple and elegant entryway and parking area.
14. Frame Your Driveway With Aromatic Lavender Bushes
Imagine pulling up this driveway in a convertible. You'd hit instant relaxation with the smell of all that gorgeous lavender. The nice thing about a border like this is it looks neat without being so rigid or needing a ton of care. Lavender is a perennial and, in the right climate, will keep its leaves most of the year around. Which makes it a great driveway border plant. And your home will smell amazing all of the time!
15. Add Some Wooden Gates At The Entrance To Your Driveway
This beautiful driveway has the double whammy of a gorgeous fieldstone fence and some hand-built wooden gates. This is a simple but effective way to show that this is a private place, but when open, visitors are welcome. The gravel chosen here matches both the fieldstone in the wall and the color of the wooden gates. It's a pleasing and welcoming look.
16. Border Your Driveway With A Low Adobe Wall
There are many gravel driveways in the western US. But if you want something to kind of hold your driveway in place, consider bordering it with a low wall. Here, adobe is used, but any material that's right for your environment works. Brick, fieldstone, or poured concrete could all make super walls to border your gravel with.
17. Don't Forget About Judiciously Placed Boulders
If you love the look of big rocks, then here's an idea for you. Massive boulders have been put in place to act as both a retaining wall for the higher level lawn and as a border for the gravel driveway. This is not a DIY project, as you'll need some heavy equipment to move those rocks into place. The finished product looks great, though.
18. Create A Transom of Pavers Between The Paved Street And Gravel Driveway
If you love the look of gravel, but live off of a paved road, then you may appreciate this idea. A transom of pavers creates a neat border between the loose gravel driveway and the crisp paved road. This transom with its grooves will catch any gravel from car tires or rain and keep the street from being littered with your driveway's rock. Plus, it looks nice, and your neighbors will appreciate it.
19. Use Garden Edging To Separate The Gravel From The Beds
Metal garden edging is readily available at most garden stores, home improvement stores, and online stores. This flat material often comes in a roll, and you hammer it in where you want some neat edging to separate spaces. Here's it's used to separate the gravel driveway from the bordering hedge bed. It serves to keep the gravel in the driveway where it belongs and the mulch on the beds.
20. Edge Your Driveway With Cobblestones
Cobblestones have an old-world charm that works great with gravel driveways. With this triple row of cobblestones, similarly colored gravel has been chosen. A simple grass lawn border is tidy next to the cobblestone.
21. Use A Parking Grid Under The Gravel
If you worry about mud and moisture with your gravel drive and parking pad, use a plastic parking grid. These grids are available in different densities, and their purpose is to provide irrigation and a place for water runoff. This keeps gravel drives and parking areas from becoming spots for mud and potholes.
Gravel Is The Way To Go
If you love a driveway that looks like one with nature, then gravel is a great choice. It comes in various shades and sizes, so you can find what fits your budget and design needs.
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