View Full Version : Installing square Bluestone flagstones

05-15-2009, 07:52 PM
I picked up enough stone for a small 10'x10' patio area. I have 14, 18"x18" squares, and 6 18"x10" rectangles.

I want to leave a gap between the stones for grass to grow through.....maybe 2"-4"?

What is the best method for installation?

05-15-2009, 08:31 PM
Sorry I meant 8'x8' total area.

4 seasons lawn&land
05-17-2009, 09:43 PM
...your hand's?

05-17-2009, 09:55 PM
...your hand's?

thank you, excellent advice!

what is it with the hardscaping forum? you guys are more secretive than the CIA! why?!

4 seasons lawn&land
05-17-2009, 10:02 PM
your question is impossibly broad. What are you looking for? How to instal a patio all together?

05-17-2009, 10:15 PM
I don't know why you want grass to grow in between them because its going to be a pita to weed wack, and over time the grass will grow up, stop water from running off, and you will have a bunch of square puddles and what not but basically:

-dig where you are putting it
-put down a layer of geotextile fabric
-lay down 6 to 16 inches of 3/4in minus base stone (compacting every few inches)
-lay down 2 inches of sand or stone dust, rough grade it to 1/4 inch per ft for drainage
-lay each stone down, moving or adding sand under each stone until you have it graded right and you can jump on it anywhere and it wont wobble. The stones have irregular bottoms (unless you bought sawed bluestone for some reason) so you will have to look at the bottom and see where you will add/subtract sand as you put each down
-fill the cracks with some topsoil, add grass seed, water, wait

05-17-2009, 10:18 PM
your question is impossibly broad. What are you looking for? How to instal a patio all together?

my finished patio will be roughly 8x8 using 18"x18" square bluestones that are 2" thick. I want a 2"-4" gap between them to allow turf to grow around the stones.

my soil was raped by the builder which left me with sandy clay.

knowing that I want turf to grow between should I use a base? if so what kind of base and how deep should I install the base?

4 seasons lawn&land
05-17-2009, 10:41 PM
You have to do a base no matter what or it will be a mess in the spring. You are in Ma still? Deep freeze locations require 8 inch minimum base. I'd do 12 for clay. 8 for sand would be fine. I dont know what sandy clay is. Is it very moist? Will it stick to itself? Hold water? If yes, deep base.

The spaced pattern with turf in between is a nice look.

05-17-2009, 11:03 PM
thanks guys! the subsoil is a sandy clay that has a consistency more like clay. looks like I will need the deeper base!

I see your point about the puddles, never thought of that. I am installing this small patio area offset the fact that human and dog traffic don't allow for a lawn here. its where we step off my deck into the lawn, and looks like crud!!

maybe a traditional patio is in order with grading for water to roll off into the soil?

is there a way to use spacings and still allow water to run off nicely?

how large of a gap between stones is best? if theres a way to make this style work I will most likely do this style "patio"

05-17-2009, 11:36 PM
if you leave grass growing it will eventually build a ridge. causing a tripping hazard. make sure you use a minimum of 2" thick bluestone. i have done some goshen stone walk ways that had thyme growing in the joints. its a pita to get right. why dont you wanna go with a normal patio there? if its just where you step off the deck why not do a semi circle at the base of the step?

4 seasons lawn&land
05-17-2009, 11:55 PM
unless you've had a problem with drainage here before then you'll be fine with the flagstone. The water will drain through the spaces big or small and of the edge, and worry about grading for wet construction, not here so much. Just make the patio a little higher then the surounding lawn and grade the sides with top soil.

05-18-2009, 07:29 AM
draining wont be an issue in the north. it will only be as wet as regular stone would normally be. i just dot like the ridge that builds up.

05-18-2009, 08:00 AM
2 low

I never thought of a semi circle. that would probably solve all my issues, and be an easier install!

great responses here thanks guys!

05-18-2009, 08:04 AM
the lay out will be a little harder if your using blue stone but i think a nice semicircle at the base of the step would look nice and solve the issue. bluestone also looks great with a tan paver. maybe use a paver edge with bluestone inlay.

05-18-2009, 08:25 AM
any pictures of the semi circle you have in mind? I have a granite slab currently as the step down off my deck. this slab is currently built up on a mound of soil, the builder was lazy and thought he was a mason! my front walk and retaing wall are proof!!

I will be removing the mound, installing a wooden step and then reinstalling the Granite slab 10" further out into the yard, and most likely a bit deeper down as well.

what will work with a granite step? I imagine the tan pavers would look awkward...?

05-18-2009, 10:34 AM
brick! granite looks old brick goes great. check out boston city hall pavers