Decomposed Granite Patios

Decomposed granite patio is one of the most cost-effective methods to improve your yard’s appearance or create a more casual walkway. DG patio has become even more popular because of its soft texture and permeability. It is aesthetically pleasing, affordable, and durable. If you ever consider a DIY landscape project, decomposed granite patio is a wise choice.

Decomposed granite patio is relatively eco-friendly. It is porous and creates a hardscape that does not require water. After the granite has been installed, it will continue to weather, adding nutrients to the surrounding soil and vegetation. Its durability comes from the weathering and erosion of solid granite boulders. DG consists of minute granite fragments (three-eighths of an inch or smaller) and fine granite, which resembles gravel but is more stable and finer. It is available in various colors, including buff, brown, gold tones, rose, variants of pink, and steel blue.

It is no surprise that many constructors and homeowners are now considering decomposed granite as their go-to landscaping material. That is why we created this guide to help you understand the benefits of DG, the cost, and how to install your decomposed granite in simple steps.

The granite in this picture is milled for use on patios

Is Decomposed Granite Good For Patios?

Decomposed granite is a good option for outdoor patios; they provide a wonderful addition to your homes and contribute to the aesthetic of your business places. Depending on the type of decomposed granite installed, your DG patio can offer many admirable benefits. 

  • Decomposed granite patios are inexpensive. Compared with other paving materials you can use on your patios, you will find that decomposed granite costs you less. Both installation and maintenance are less expensive. 
  • They are highly absorbent, preventing water from sitting or creating puddles on your patios. 
  • DG comes in different styles and patterns, leaving you with various options. Over thirty shades and colors to beautify your homes and business places. 
  • Decomposed granite is easy to clean; it requires less time and energy to maintain and stay tidy. Also, with the basic equipment, your DG patios will remain durable for a long time. 

Decomposed Granite Patio Problems

Decomposed granite is a popular paving material. This paving material is suitable for outdoor landscaping. It has many benefits that make it desirable to homeowners. However, you should consider a few pitfalls before deciding on the right paving material for your patios. 

  • Decomposed granite needs a regular refill: DG gets scattered and lost with regular use because of its nature. The challenge here is getting the exact color or pattern to add up to what you already have installed. 
  • Depending on the type of DG patio you have installed, your patio might remain stable or muddy with heavy rainfall. A good example is loose DG. Loose decomposed granite tends to get muddy or erode when wet. DG is more suitable in areas with low rainfall. 
  • Although decomposed granite is very porous and offers a good drainage system, it loses its ability to filter and automatically drain water when coated with resin. 
  • Decomposed granite patios can grow weeds and moss. This will require that you frequently remove and maintain your patios. 

Decomposed granite vs. Crushed granite

DG and crushed granite are closely related. However, crushed granite is not crushed as finely as decomposed granite. While crushed granite may not be the best paving material for homeowners with certain disabilities or a family with toddlers, decomposed granite patios bring smoothness and stability that is safe for you and your children. Crushed granite still has its benefits and can be manipulated to create stable surfaces. Deciding between crushed granite or DG patios shouldn’t be that difficult. Decomposed granite has a more economical impact and requires less maintenance. On the other hand, crushed granite has definite sharp edges that require more maintenance. 

The worker is busy installing decomposed granite for patio

How to Build A Decomposed Granite Patio 

When decomposed granite is used as a landscape material, it’s compacted into a tough, stable surface material to fit your patios. Here is a simple guide to help you install your DG patios. 

Step One: Mark Out The Area

You can’t install any paving material without deciding the area you want to cover. String, spray paint, or stakes are good materials for marking your areas. 

Step Two:  Excavation 

Excavation can be the most fun part of DIYs or the worst. Whichever the case is, you can’t escape excavation if you decide to do your patios yourself. Using a shovel, dig out the topsoil as much as possible. Most times, you will need to decide the level of your patio. You will have to answer questions like: should your patio be on the same level as your surrounding or a little higher? Your answer to this question will determine how much topsoil should be removed. 

Step Three: It’s time to install edging.

Redwood bender boards, steel edging, or pavers are suitable edging materials for different decomposed granite patio styles. When installing your edging, ensure that you use the right level and ensure the elevation is accurate. 

Step Four: Install your DG 

Before getting to this step, you could determine the exact quantity of DG you will need to install on your patio. But if you haven’t, then there is no need to worry. A landscape material calculator will help you decide the amount of DG you need for your patio. Once you have calculated the quantity you need by entering the patio’s square footage and the DG’s depth, you can now spread the decomposed granite over the area. 

Lay down and compact your patio until it is evenly leveled to the required thickness. Wet each layer with a garden hose until it is moist and then use heavy equipment or a plate compactor to run it down. 

Once you have leveled a layer to your satisfaction, move on to the next layer and repeat the same process. When leveling, use a rake or broom to loosen up the surface. This will help you achieve a smooth and natural patio. 

Your decomposed granite patio is ready to be used! 

Decomposed Granite Patio Cost 

The initial cost of purchasing and installing decomposed granite on your patios is quite low. This is because decomposed granite is available and, to an extent, easy to produce. Also, the installation process doesn’t take up much time and energy. Unlike concrete and asphalt patios, decomposed granite patios take up less time. 

The price of DG will depend on several factors. This may include; color, size, quality, and whether it’s stabilized. Building a small patio can cost less than 20 dollars if you decide to do it yourself. DG patios will cost 40 to 50 dollars per cubic yard to purchase the material, and you can expect to pay between 70 to 80 dollars per hour for installation. 

Decomposed Granite Patio Ideas And Images 

  1. Decomposed Granite Paths and Patios: decomposed granite can enhance their beauty and create a beautiful and relaxing pattern for paths and patios. 
  1. Brown DG for patios: made from natural erosion of solid granite. It’s stable and durable with a natural feel.
  1. Low-cost Decomposed Granite Patios: eco-friendly, durable patio covered with decomposed granite.
  1. Colorful Decomposed Granite: DG comes in different colors and styles that can brighten your day. This fine DG is perfect for patios. 
  1. Fine Decomposed Granite: decomposed granite is composed of fine rocks that have weathered. 

Decomposed Granite: Frequently Asked Questions

Does decomposed granite attract bugs?

Since DG patios are weathered rocks, it’s easy to assume they will attract bugs and insects to your homes. Well, DG is a hundred percent environmentally friendly and doesn’t decay. And since it does not decay, your decomposed granite patios won’t attract bugs. 

Is decomposed granite comfortable to walk on?

DG has been broken into fine and small particles of similar sizes. This material is stable and compacted down into the installed area, making it easy and comfortable to walk on. Decomposed granite is a powdery material with a relaxing feel and is much more attractive than other paging materials. 

What happens to decomposed granite when it rains?

Bad news. As mentioned earlier, decomposed granite is best suited for locations with low rainfall. So depending on where you leave and how heavy the pour is. Your DG can be a total mess. Thankfully, decomposed granite is porous and provides a great draining system for water from sitting on the surface. But when the rain becomes heavy, it can create a mess and ruin the entire area. 

Decomposed granite may also be a poor choice because of its ability to erode, get muddy, or grow weeds. If you live in an environment with heavy rainfall, you should consider a more suitable paving material for your patios, walkway, or driveways. 

Related Articles:


DG is a great choice for your patios, but you must consider all the factors that can affect or ruin your DG patio before jumping on it. Decomposed granite, when installed properly, can successfully be used to pave any outdoor surface and will remain there for a long period.