Best tool to remove small rocks from beds and level?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by mculik5, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. mculik5

    mculik5 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

    This past fall, I removed all of the landscaping in front of my house. It was overgrown and we were having new windows installed, some of which would have been impossible to get to with the landscaping in place.

    What remains of the beds needs to be cleaned up and leveled. More importantly, during the landscape removal, we discovered that a previous owner had used river rocks as a ground cover. If you're not familiar, river rocks are 2"-4" smooth rocks. So, in addition to the leveling, these need to be removed.

    What is the best tool for this job?

    Thinking of renting a york rake to remove the rocks and break up the soil, then hand rake to level.

    Thoughts? Is there a better tool for the job, especially working in such tight quarters close to the house? Maybe a Toro Dingo attachment or something?

  2. knox gsl

    knox gsl LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,072

    Dig it all out and haul in new soil mix for best results.
    Mark Oomkes likes this.
  3. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 294

  4. jrodgers

    jrodgers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 294

    That's not what I was trying to,do I was trying to put full thread up
    Cleaning and replacing 1-3in River Rock bed
  5. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,566

    York rake might move some of the rocks. It sure won't loosen soil.

    Unless you're referring to a Harley rake in which please take video and post it up. (Might want to board up the new windows first though)
 and knox gsl like this.
  6. LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,839

    In all honesty, hire it out.
  7. ArTurf

    ArTurf LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Ark
    Messages: 6,082

    This is an example of why the saying "Rocks in bed, Rocks in head" meaning at some point if you put rocks in a flowerbed it will be a PITA.
    Mark Oomkes likes this.
  8. brichter14

    brichter14 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,071

    A mini skid steer.

    Garden hoe and/or steel rake

    Scoop shovel

    Person 1 rakes rocks into scoop shovel that person 2 is holding. Throw rocks into dingo bucket. Once it’s mostly cleaned out you can run the skid through the bed to smooth it out

    Landscape rocks are better than mulch. Removing them isn’t terrible if you have the right equipment. And they don’t discolor or degrade or blow away like mulch
    hort101 likes this.
  9. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,566

    "Degrade" is one of the benefits of mulch. It mimics the natural setting of all the other benefits of mulch over stone.

    Mulch blows away? Where does it blow to? All the millions of yards of mulch that are installed every year must end up some place?
    hort101 likes this.
  10. brichter14

    brichter14 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,071

    Clean leaves out of a mulch bed with a blower. Do they stay put?

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