Natural stone flooring can look stunning on outdoor patios or garden areas. It is more expensive to install natural stone, but the look is something that can't be replicated. Some stones will hold up better than others depending on the area you live in, and how the stones are laid. Here is a quick look at some of the different ideas for utilizing natural stone outdoors.
Granite is unique in that it is available in many amazing color combinations. The stone is durable, and can easily withstand the pressure of being used as a floor. Granite is naturally scratch resistant and won't be affected by heat like many other types of natural stone. As far as natural stone goes, granite is relatively inexpensive and will last a lifetime when cared for.
Slate isn't commonly used for patios, but there is no reason it can't be used outdoors. It is durable and is used in many construction applications. Slate is usually a black-gray color, but variations of deep reds, purples, and even greens can be found when the rock contains other materials. The drawback to colored slate is that it can fade after some time. Slate will need to be treated if it's going to be used outdoors to preserve the color.
Sandstone is commonly found as a material used for outdoor patios and garden stones in the South West region of the United States. The colors of sandstone vary, and can be found in sandy colors, reddish browns, and even dark browns. Sandstone can be formed in to a variety of shapes, and it's common to find sandstone bricks at home improvement stores for outdoor use.
Using mosaic patterns in outdoor areas is becoming more popular. The job is labor intensive, but the look is one of a kind. This can be accomplished by using different color quartz stones in any pattern you choose. Another twist on this is to use pebble tile. Pebble tile is made from natural stone, but is transformed in to a tile. It is also available in many colors. Pebble tile will be easier to install than other types of natural stone.
Cobblestone will create an old world feel. The natural stones are laid to form uneven patterns. The cobblestone can be sealed so the surface is flat even though it won't look flat. Cobblestone will require maintenance, especially if it hasn't been sealed. This is a popular finish for driveways, garden paths, and patio areas.
Mixing It Up
Another trend in outdoor flooring is using a variety of stones to create a unique look. Many people will paint patterns on the ground, or just lay out a pattern using several types of stones. When time is taken in the planning process this can look great. This can also be expensive and the maintenance may be time consuming since you will have several types of stone to worry about.