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Lava rock, pros and cons

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Sweet Tater, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. Sweet Tater

    Sweet Tater LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,123

    I ave a custoomer that just bought a new house and the landscape sucks so we are going to redo it. However it has lava rock in it instead of mulch and she loves it, I dont think its a good item for flower beds but really dont know that much about it. CAn those that have worked with it or have knowledge of lava rock please give me some pros and cons about it. We are in north east Mississippi, and it can get to 100 degrees and above in the summer and redclay soil, just so you have an idea of what I am working with.
  2. MowHouston

    MowHouston LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,012

  3. gunsnroses

    gunsnroses LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 266

    Pros= none......(5 minutes later) nope still cant think of one

    Cons= it looks like a 1982 pile of junk Mcdonalds job
    = someday... some poor sap will have to remove it....that will suck

    * disclaimer----this is based on my opinion
  4. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    expensive to put in but then you are done, no more mulching. I like it.
  5. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 37,804

    I'd rather have river gravel, or colored limestone. Lave rock is too light and will blow out of beds with backpack blowers if there's some wet leaves in there.
  6. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,746

    Lava rock is predominantly sold at the big ticket stores because it is used in flowering pots and urns. It has that appealing color for indoor decorations along with colored glass stones and polished stones.
    I have one commercial building with lava stone on 4 pathways. It floats, it floats,it floats.
    Cannot get the leaves out it worth a hoot!! Weeds will still grow through and around their bulk at 2-3 inch depth.
    It seems that the use of these rocks is up to the eye of the beholder as long as you lay out some con's, then the customer will not be surprised to learn the hard way. Or Not!!!
  7. Chris McCrary

    Chris McCrary LawnSite Member
    Messages: 25

    I had that crap in my flowers beds. Why on earth would someone want to do that? It ends up everywhere. It floats, it gets blown around, makes nice noises when you run a unsuspecting piece over with the lawn mower. If you ever don't like it, its a pain to get out.
  8. MarkintheGarden

    MarkintheGarden LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,133

    I hate lava rock for all the reasons mentioned, and one not yet stated; If you are using landscape fabric with lava rock on top, it is hard to keep any landscape plants alive and healthy. Juniper and yews seem to survive, but everything else dies, or barely survives the conditions.
  9. Andover Landscape Co.

    Andover Landscape Co. LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Lexington,KY
    Messages: 573

    Some pros are that it is lighter than stone and being that its porous it has a insulating effect. Giving a lower surface temp that would help during a drought.

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