By Joe Raboine, Director of Residential Hardscapes, Belgard
Photographs courtesy of Belgard
Seasonal maintenance is an important part of taking proper care of both your landscaping and hardscapes. Hardscapes are becoming more integrated with the surrounding landscapes, thanks to the popularity of biophilic design, and need to be cared for alongside plants and other landscaping elements.
With the blending of hardscapes and landscapes, especially in garden areas or others with heavy greenery, you may see some pesky weeds trying to weave their way through paver joints in spring and summer. Luckily, there are several ways to prevent weeds from ruining your hardscape design – whether in a new or existing paver installation.
Use Polymeric Sand in the Joints
If you are implementing a new paver installation in your outdoor space, make sure you use polymeric sand in the joints. Similar to grout, polymeric sand provides a solid joint that prevents sand migration, which will help thwart weed growth.
Seal Your Joints
For existing paver installations, a proper joint sealant will help deter weeds from cropping up. Sealer will help firm up the joints, much like polymeric sand, for added protection. It is important to note that the area must be thoroughly cleaned before applying any paver sealant product.
If sealing pavers isn’t within your current budget, you can always spot treat any weeds that do appear. Depending on your preference, you can use a paver-safe weed killer from your local home improvement store or opt for chemical-free alternatives – including using very hot water to kill weeds.
Be Careful with Pressure Washing
As part of overall hardscape maintenance, many people may think grabbing the pressure washer is a great way to clean out the joints and prep for resealing or putting down weed management products. However, using a pressure washer on a high PSI can actually strip away paver finish and damage the joints.
If you need to remove joints for repairs, you can use a pressure washer – but make sure to use a rotating tip and low PSI, aiming at the joints only and not the surface of the pavers.
For a real-world example of weed management and joint repair in concrete pavers, check out this blog. It also offers great step-by-step instructions!
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