How to Build a Tile Patio
These step-by-step instructions will make it easy to build a broken-tile patio.
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You don't have to go over budget to complete this project. In fact, building a broken-tile patio can be quite inexpensive.
Arrange the tile fragments together like a puzzle (figure A). To secure the tile, you'll need several bags of thin-set mortar. Mix the mortar with water in a metal wheelbarrow in accordance with the manufacturer's directions. Use a shovel to stir the mortar, and wear gloves to protect your hands.
Lay a thick layer of mortar over the cement slab (or paver) and create grooves in the mortar with a notched trowel. Wash each tile in water and position it on the mortar (figure C).
As each row is finished, place a long board over the tiles, and press down on the board to make an even surface (figure D). Squeeze grout into the gaps between the tiles. Next, wash away the excess grout with a drenched sponge.
Apply a sealer to the patio to bring out the color of the tiles and to make the surface more weatherproof. For the price of mortar, grout and sealer, the new mosaic patio and stepping pads add instant color and interest to the backyard (figure G).
Notice the way the stepping pads are spaced to form small gaps in between. Planting a groundcover like ground ivy, or Glecoma hederacea, in the gaps both separates and accentuates a mosaic path (figure J). In addition, princess flower (Tibouchina urvilleana), Japanese anemone and impatiens are planted between the path and the house.
This bench can be made to any length to provide plenty of seating at your next backyard party.
If you or your kids love baseball as much as I do, you'll love stepping up to the batter's box and taking a whack at this project.
Adding a ceramic-tile surround is an easy weekend project. Follow these step-by-step instructions.