Gravel Drive at Montacute House, Somerset, England
Gravel drives are not paved but are covered with round loose stones of roughly uniform size and smaller pebbles. They're popular as residential driveways because they're attractive and make a unique crunching sound when driven or walked on.
Shape and Dimensions
Select a shape and design for your gravel drive that best complements the front of your home. It could be straight, and perpendicular with the walkway to the front door or it could have a curved shape. Make it wide enough for today's larger cars, providing enough room for people to step onto the graven on both sides of the car.
Stone Coping and Plant Edging
Gravel drives look best with stone or brick coping or edging pavers that also help contain the gravel, which tends to shift or spill out. Limestone or similar looking stone, brick and even some complimentary concrete pavers can achieve a pleasing and polished look. Shrubs or even manicured or sculpted hedging provide a dramatic edging to gravel. If using plant materials, make sure the soil is rich, well drained and that new shoots can't be covered by gravel.
Choosing Gravel Material
Get rounded stones with some rough edges so it doesn't move around easily. The stones can vary from 1/8-inch to 1 1 /2-inches in diameter. Larger stones can be difficult to settle, and can be uncomfortable to walk and drive upon. There are a variety of natural colours of gravel, and you can use it in a monotone shade or combine colours to create a unique marbled effect. Complement or contrast with the house or surrounding architectural elements. Don't try to exactly match, but choose gravel that goes well together and appears harmonious and natural.