A walkway/pathway reveals a lot about the home and the people who live in it. A beautifully designed, elegant pathway means the home is just as beautiful and elegant inside as it is outside and that the owner has a taste for finer things in life and takes good care of his or her home. Miami, Florida has no shortage of such homeowners. One of the most beautiful cities in the USA, it has many fine homes with mesmerizingly beautiful and elegant walkways.
The main purpose of a pathway/walkway is to provide a safe and easy access to your home. Another is to link the house with the garden. A well designed pathway shapes and defines a garden by segmenting and connecting the various parts, some of which would otherwise be inaccessible. A successful pathway adds beauty to your home and garden while a bad one spoils their beauty.
Things to consider when building a walkway:
The perfect pathway/walkway is a combination of functionality and beauty. If you can achieve this without overlooking environmental considerations, then you have built the perfect walkway. Here are seven important points you should consider when building such a pathway:
• The route: How you route the path determines its success or failure. If you have a large area with garden, then consider building two paths: the primary path to provide quick and easy access to your home, and the secondary path to link your house with the garden. The former should be straight with the shortest possible distance between the main door and the gate or road. The latter could take a long detour around the house, providing access to every corner of the garden. Usually, the secondary path branches out from the primary path. When plotting the route, be bold and creative but also practical.
• The width: The width of the path should commensurate with its use. The primary path should be wide enough for at least two people to walk side by side without touching each other, but it shouldn’t be so wide that it spoils the front view of the house by grabbing the focus. The secondary path can be narrower since it is mostly used by only one person at a time. However, it should be wide enough to accommodate outdoor tools and equipment, such as a lawn mower or a garden cart; otherwise you will have a hard time moving them when you need to.
• The design: You can choose any design for your walkway/pathway, but it is best to choose one that complements the overall design of your house. A walkway should be beautiful and elegant and should enhance the attractiveness of your home and garden without taking away the focus from them. You can find many walkway design ideas on the internet. If you are the creative type, then try creating your own design. If it turns out well, it will be a fun and rewarding experience.
• Building materials: The primary path should be firm enough to endure the heavy traffic it receives on a daily basis. The secondary path must also be durable and long lasting. Some of the best materials for building pathways include oolite slab (coral rock), keystone and flagstone. Mined in the southern tip of Florida, oolite rock is available in a wide variety of formats to suit any purpose. Keystone is a type of limestone mined in the Florida Keys. It is primarily made of dead scleratinian coral, such as Brain coral and Elkhorn coral. Flagstone is a sedimentary rock that is flat and is perfect for walkways, patios, roofing and fences. It is available in blue, red, buff and many other colors. All these rocks are beautiful, tough, durable and easy to work with. They add a natural element to your house.
• Filling materials: Inevitably, you will need to use filling materials between the rocks to fortify the construction as well as to add beauty and style. The best materials for filling in a walkway/pathway include gravel, beach pebbles, river rock and sod. They create a porous layer so that rainwater will not collect on the walkway. Use the filling materials liberally so that no space is left between the rocks for weeds to grow and insects to build their home.
• Metal edging: Once the walkway is complete, it is a good idea to install a metal edging to prevent the rocks from slipping towards the side and also to protect the walkway from encroachment of sand, mud and weeds. Metal edging adds form and definition to the walkway, making it look more attractive. The best metals for the purpose are aluminum and stainless steel as they are resistant to rusting and wear-and-tear.
• Walkway Lighting: A walkway/pathway should be properly illuminated at night so that no one will trip and fall. Lights also add beauty and elegance to your home at night. There are many different types of light fixtures that you can install in a walkway, such as landscape lighting and deck lighting. Choose appropriate lighting that appeals to your senses, you may also want to consider solar lights to save on your electric bill.
• Environmental considerations: When building a pathway, it is advisable to make sure that it will not cause land erosion, contribute to land and air pollution, and lead to the destruction of native flora and fauna. Use locally available construction materials as much as possible to minimize your carbon footprint. Birds and small animals are an important part of a garden, so design the route in such a way that their natural habitat is not destroyed.
Consider getting professional help:
Building the perfect walkway/pathway requires imagination, experience, designing skills and lots of hard work. So, it's often a good idea to get professional help like most homeowners do in Miami, Florida. Cortada Landscape Design is one of the most trusted landscaping companies for residential as well as commercial landscaping in the city. We have built beautiful, elegant and imaginative landscapes and walkways/pathways for hundreds of homes in Miami. Call us or visit us and we will build the perfect walkway for your home.
Cortada Landscape Design is your one stop shop for outdoor living needs. Providing Landscape Design, Landscape Contracting, Irrigation and Landscape Lighting Services. Servicing Miami, Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Coconut Grove etc.