DIY curved paver walkway

DIY Paver Walkway

The first thing I wanted to do with landscaping was build a short, curved paver walkway to the greenhouse door.  I’ve never done anything like this before, so we’ll see how well it holds up.  I used Lowe’s tutorial: How to Design and Build a Paver Walkway.  My walkway is about 24″ wide since only one person will be using it at a time.

DIY curved paver walkway

Lessons learned:

  1. Always dig wider than you think you’ll need.  I originally didn’t go out wide enough, so when it was time to install the paver edging, I had to dig more.  😕
  2. Don’t skip the part in the tutorial where you lay down 1″ PVC pipe to level out the area by running a 2×4 over the tops of the PVC.  If I’d done this, it would have saved me a lot more time with the leveling part. I. Hate. Leveling. Stuff.

The first thing I wanted to do was get a general idea where the pathway would lay.  I was 2 bricks short, so I had to go back and get those the next day, along with some other supplies.  These pavers are 5.8″ x 5.8″ by 1.7″ high.  To do the curve and make the ends come out even, it took a lot of finessing and rearranging.  The left row is 11 pavers long; 2nd row is 12 pavers; 3rd row is 13 pavers; 4th row is 14 pavers.

Then I moved the outer edges over one brick and moved the inner pavers out of the way so I could use my tiller to do the digging for me.  I should have moved the outer pavers over 2 pavers width to accommodate the edging.

I love this tiller, but it won’t chomp through really thick roots.  Sticking to the theme of things not being that easy for me with this greenhouse, I ran into some large roots where I wanted my walkway to go.  Of course.  The picture doesn’t even do them justice.

tree roots while building paver walkway

So I had to grab my axe and start chomping away until I was able to get them up.  What a workout I got that day!  I hated doing this because it took up way too much of my time that day, but I got it done.  Again, the picture below does not do the roots justice.  I should have taken a picture holding them so you could see how big they were.  Those pavers are a square 5.8″ to give you an idea.

Once that was done and I somewhat had it level and sloping away from the greenhouse, probably more than was directed in the Lowe’s video, I put down paver leveling sand and paver bases I purchased (so I wouldn’t have to dig so deep and use gravel under the sand).

I didn’t buy enough sand at first, and then it rained 2 days, so I had to wait 4 days before I could get out there and finish the sand-leveling part.  This is one of the steps I shouldn’t have skipped, but I didn’t want to buy a 10-foot piece of PVC because I don’t have anywhere to really store it once I finished with it.  So I just eyeballed the sand leveling, putting the paver bases on top to see where more sand needed to be added.  This is not ideal because it takes forever.  Did I mention I hate leveling things?

Once I had the pavers on the paver base, I decided to use paver edging so the edges would be nice and neat, especially when I filled in the gaps with joint sand.  I realized I would have to dig out more on each side to make room for the edging.  FYI, this paver edging was such a pain in the butt.  I mean, I think I’d rather deal with the tree roots again!  I got so mad with the right side piece, I would have thrown it and broke it if it was fragile.  😡

It wouldn’t be so bad if the walkway was straight, but even after cutting the edging like it says for curves, I still struggled with it on the right side in particular.  That side was a little lower than the actual pavers, but after fussing with it for an hour, I didn’t care anymore.  I wanted it to be DONE.  It’s good enough for me.

The left side wasn’t as difficult and looked a lot more even, thank goodness, since it’s the side that will be most visible.

paver edging; DIY paver walkway

Then came the jointing sand.  I hope I did this part well enough.  Once the sand is in the cracks and you’ve used a leaf blower to lightly blow off any remaining sand on top of the pavers, you are supposed to lightly wet it a little at a time so it soaks into the sand really good without puddling on top (or else the instructions say it will stain the pavers).  Unfortunately, since you have to slightly level it away from the structure, the water ran off faster closest to the greenhouse.  I just hope it got soaked in good enough at that part so the entire depth of the sand hardened.  But I love how it looks with the sand filling in all the cracks!

Next, I intend to make a step with the same pavers at the greenhouse door.



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