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Brick Patio Design – Building a Patio that Works for You

When you are deciding on how you are going to construct your brick patio, you should know that it isn’t a simple operation. This type of project is one that requires much work and preparation, even before you lay the first brick.

The first thing to determine is your brick patio design. The key to this step is simplicity. Because most people who attempt to install a brick patio are not experienced masons, a simple, rectangle formation is often recommended. Using right angles will help you to avoid adding hours to your installation with the difficult and frustrating task of cutting your bricks.

The pattern most recommended for the novice is called the basket weave. This pattern requires no cutting. The basket weave consists of laying the bricks in perpendicular pairs. For example, you would lay two bricks left to right and lay the second set up and down. You alternate this pattern until you complete your rectangle.

Before you begin, you need to lay out your area and dig it to a depth of 8 inches. Once you’ve done this, you should do a test run with your bricks to make sure that you've got your math right. You should leave a 2-inch space around your patio so that you can insert a patio border. This border is usually made from bricks that are laid on their sides. Once you are satisfied with your numbers, remove the bricks, leaving the border.

Now you should fill the center with 4 inches of crushed stone. You need to level this and compact the area with a water-filled roller. This will ensure that the bricks will not sink a few months after you put in your patio. Once you have the area compacted, lay down landscaping fabric to prevent future weed growth. Now pour in sand to a depth of 2 inches and bring it to level with a 2 by 4. Once you're rolled down the sand to compact it, you can begin laying you bricks.

As you go through this process you need to tap the bricks into place with a mallet. Remember to string a line across your pattern as you go so that you can keep your pattern even. Once you’ve laid all of your bricks, you need to spread sand over the top and spray the whole area down with water to ensure that the sand works its way into the cracks.

If you find that there are open spaces between the bricks, pour more sand on top and repeat the hose down. Once you’re satisfied with the coverage, you can relax knowing that you have created a wonderfully simple brick patio that will last for years to come.

For more information on constructing a deck or patio, please read these articles:

Designing porch railings for your deck.

Punch deck and landscape design software review.


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