Things You'll Need
Manual gravel compactor
Polyurethane construction adhesive
Use a dolly to move heavy rocks. Shim unstable stones with rock chips.
Wear eye protection and gloves when moving and chipping stones. Get help when moving large stones.
Pathways or porch steps made of stone can be a stunning contrast to the organic green of your yard. Well-placed flat flagstones add a great deal of decoration to a landscape at a fraction of the cost of poured cement. Flagstones don't require any complicated or professional installation. You get everything you'll need at a home improvement store, and have your stone porch steps installed in a weekend.
Level the surface in front of your porch. Dig down about 2 inches to make sure that you are not setting stone onto soft ground. Use a manual compactor to press the ground and pack it into a solid, level surface. Determine what the tread and the rise of the stairs will be. The tread is the length of the actual step, and the rise is the height. Use the equation (rise x 2) + tread depth = 26 inches to figure out the ideal depth and rise of the stair steps.
Settle the first step at the very front of the compacted ditch. You may need a few different shaped flagstones to form a solid platform. Fit them as snugly together as possible before filling the space behind the step with gravel. If you'd like the step riser to be higher, use thicker stones or build a second layer. Compact the gravel until it is level with the first step laid. Make sure the tread of the step is long enough to support the front and rear of the next step.
Fill the space behind the second step with gravel and sand. Compact it so that it will not shift or settle. Glue the steps together with polyurethane construction adhesive.
Continue to build the steps up to the edge of the porch. For the last step, only add gravel to the level of the riser of the previous step to ensure your last step is level to the porch.
Add sand between the stones to seal the creases. Sweep the excess off with a broom.
Andrea Crist began writing professionally in 2010. She specializes in craft and DIY articles for various websites. Crist completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts at Columbia College Chicago.