A Do-It-Yourself Pebble Concrete Pavement

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Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure

  • Landscaping paint

  • Board

  • Shovel

  • Tamper

  • 3/4-inch aggregate

  • Measuring stick

  • 2-by-4 inch boards

  • Screws drill

  • Wooden posts

  • Concrete mix

  • Wheelbarrow

  • Paddle

  • Drill

  • Gauge rake

  • Wood board

  • Shovel

  • Pebbles

  • Broom

  • Breathable fabric

  • Sealant

  • Roller brush

Pebbles add color and texture to concrete

Seeding pebbles over the surface of wet concrete adds visual interest to pavement. Creating an exposed pebble finish on pavement is a do-it-yourself task that only slightly increases the total cost of the project. Pebbled concrete forms a level, slip-resistant surface that suits driveways, walkways or patios. Choose smooth, colorful pebbles that complement existing colors in your yard.


Step 1

Measure the area and add 3 inches to the sides for the form boards. Outline the site with landscaping paint, tracing the side of a board so the lines are straight.

Step 2

Unearth the area with a shovel until there's an 8-inch-deep expanse with vertical walls. Press the bottom of a hand tamper over the surface so the loose dirt feels compact.

Step 3

Add 3/4-inch aggregate into the expanse and spread it with a shovel. Insert a measuring stick through the aggregate to the compacted subsoil. Tamp the aggregate and add more to create a 5-inch-thick base. The tamped base is flexible enough to buffer the concrete from ground tension and enable water to drain away.


Step 4

Fit 2-by-4 inch form boards against the inner walls and screw them together with a drill. Brace the boards with wooden posts around the outer perimeter.

Step 5

Mix concrete mix in a large wheelbarrow with water using a paddle and drill. The composition should be thick, but spreadable

Step 6

Pour the mixture over the base using a gauge rake to fill the corners and sides. Place a wood board on the wet surface and pull it back and forth to make it level.


Step 7

Lay decorative pebbles over the concrete with a shovel. Spread any small piles with a broom for even coverage. Lay a board over top and press the pebbles into the concrete. Wait about two hours so the surface can start to set.

Step 8

Push off the thin coating of cement paste around the sides of the stones with a soft broom. Expose only the top of the pebbles so they remain firmly embedded in the concrete. Hose off the cement you removed.

Step 9

Cover the pavement with moist, breathable fabric and keep it moist for a week.

Step 10

Seal the pavement with clear, penetrating sealant using a roller brush to guard against water damage and wear and tear.


references & resources

Aurora LaJambre

Aurora LaJambre is a writer and editor living in Brooklyn, N.Y. For over five years she's covered topics in culture, lifestyle, travel, DIY design and green living for print and online media. Her publication credits include "WOW Women on Writing," "Six States" and Catalogs.com. She graduated from New York University in 2003 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in creative writing.