Overhaul a dull yard in a weekend by coloring landscaping bricks or concrete. Stains and outdoor paints are affordable, easy to apply and can change the entire look and feel of your outdoor living areas.
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Design Ideas for Landscaping Bricks
Muted earth tones can create a tranquil space while a patchwork of paint colors on pavers can be made to look like a rug. Choose bright colors to open up a small, dark space.
Varying hues of the same color along a walkway can add depth and texture to a plain path. A concrete wall can become an art installation with a wash of acid stain.
Clean Landscaping Bricks and Concrete
The landscaping bricks, concrete or rocks need to be thoroughly cleaned to best absorb the stain or paint. Scrub the outdoor area down well with a mix of TSP and water or 1 part vinegar to 1 part water. Rinse the space thoroughly and allow it to dry before applying the first coat.
Color Landscaping Bricks With Stain
A water-based brick stain is easy to apply and can prevent water from building up on the area. It allows the bricks to breathe so water within the porous material isn't trapped under a sealant. The water in the brick can cause them to crack when the temperatures dip below freezing.
Apply the stain over each brick with a paintbrush. Use small, smooth strokes as you move along the area. Stir the stain in the can or bucket each time you dip the brush in to keep the color consistent. Wipe up drips or overstrokes as you go so they don't have time to dry.
Paint Landscaping Bricks With Acrylic
To color landscaping bricks with paint, use acrylic-based varieties. It's longer lasting and resistant to the harsh weather outdoors. For a large area, the paint can be rolled on. If you have a pattern of small, interlocking bricks, you may need to paint each brick by hand. After painting, allow the area to dry thoroughly.
Apply a coat of sealant over the painted landscaping bricks to add a layer of protection. Follow the manufacturer's directions and apply a second coat if it's recommended.
The sealant will more than likely need to be reapplied every few years or once the landscaping bricks' color fades. A fresh coat of sealant will brighten up the original paint color.
Concrete Floors and Other Areas
Staining a dull concrete outdoor area with acid stain can raise the aesthetic of the patio or backyard barbecue space. Acid stains can also be used to create designs on large boulders or concrete walls. An acid stain can be applied with a roller or broom. A second coat will create a darker shade on the concrete.
Let the stain dry for at least five hours before neutralizing it with an alkaline neutralizing solution, such as TSP. Mix the TSP with water according to the directions and liberally pour it over the concrete, scrubbing it into the material with a broom. Rinse the area well to remove all residue of the TSP and acid stain.