Lime Rock vs. River Rock

Hardscaping is the use of paving stones, gravel and other hard but movable materials in landscaping. Examples of hardscaping include retaining walls, patio pavers, water features, footpaths and driveways.

Two popular choices for hardscaping materials are limestone rock and river rock. Their mass appeal is where the similarities between these materials end. Let’s take a look at some of the features that makes these rocks attractive and distinct.

Lime Rock

Thanks in large part to its consistent gray-ish white color, limestone rock offers an appealing aesthetic. Lime rock is commonly found in driveways and gravel roads. It is a porous materials, making it great for drainage for driveway and other pathways.

Lime rock and limestone is best in areas without extreme fluctuations in seasonal climate. It is an ideal material for hot, dry climate as is absorbs heat instead of radiating it.

Unfortunately, the same characteristics that make lime rock great for drainage create a few drawbacks. Lime rock is easily stained from rust, paints, greases or acids. Limestone is also susceptible to acid rain. This is especially true of limestone pavers. Thankfully the appearance of crushed limestone is less affected.

As limestone breaks down over time and erodes from watering and rain, it can impact the pH of your soil. High acidity can inhibit plant growth and may even kill certain varieties of plants. Use lime rock with caution around plants, lawns and garden beds.

River Rock

River rock, also called creek stone, features gentle, rounded edges. This semi-polished stone is dredged or scooped from rivers and streams. River rock is popular for decorations in landscaping and can be used to create attractive natural areas around swimming pools, garden beds, water features, and trees.

River rock is available in a variety of sizes ranging from 3/8 inch to 5 inches. Of the smaller varieties, pea gravel is a popular choice for use in hardscaping. Despite its name, pea gravel is a type of river rock not gravel.

River rock is generally best for low-traffic walkways. It is not ideal for driveways as the smooth stones shift from the weight of vehicles. However, river rock makes an attractive and durable edging material for driveways and walkways.

When it comes to landscaping, river rock can make weeding a more difficult chore. River rock as a mulch-alternative can make it hard to remove roots. For best results, pair river rock with landscaping fabric to help reduce weed growth.

Order Hardscaping Materials Today

National Site Materials offers a two online order forms to help make ordering quick and easy. Contractors can use our Contractor Order Form while residential customers can use the Homeowners Order Form. With either form, all you need to do is tell us what materials you need along with when and where you need them delivered. Our order fulfillment team will handle the rest.

Have questions about your order? Contact us online or call us at (888) 237-2746 and we will work with you to find the materials you need for your next project.

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