Lay it Down: A Guide to Landscaping Surfaces

Landscaping surfaces have come a long way since the days of poured concrete decks and pebble-strewn paths. Now, there's an option for every budget and design style. From stones to synthetics, get to know them all here.

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Terra Cotta Tiles
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Tiles

Terra-cotta tiles offer the warmth and color of the Mediterranean, and come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but most are not frostproof. Their porousness creates a safe, nonslip surface, but makes them vulnerable to staining and cracking, so consider appling a sealant.

A great way to use any extra tiles you have around is to make a mixed surface. Laying assorted blocks and tiles - terra-cotta and otherwise - on a dry mortar mix will help you to adjust the different levels and avoid an uneven surface. Mixed surfaces allow you to use color to your heart's content and save on cost, especially if you're a good bargain designer who can see vision in other people's clearance items and leftovers.

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