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Beach Pebbles - Decorative Rocks
Category Landscape Rocks
For property owners, termites are among the most dreaded pests. A termite infestation can cause thousands of dollars of damage to a building, and eliminating these insects isn’t easy when they spread throughout a house. Compared to wood mulch, decorative rocks are less likely to attract termites. These pests are usually attracted to wet cellulose materials. However, they can sometimes still show up in areas where decorative rocks, including black polished pebbles, are present. Here’s how to prevent your decorative rock garden from attracting termites to your property.

Place Landscaping Fabric on the Ground

Unlike wood mulch, termites can’t bore through decorative rocks. Instead, they’ll use the decorative rocks as protection as they lurk deeper beneath and on the underlying dirt. Placing landscaping fabric down before you install the decorative rocks creates a less suitable environment for termites. Subterranean termites build tunnels from the dirt to nearby buildings. If they can’t tunnel, they won’t want to live in the decorative rocks.

Avoid Having the Decorative Rocks Touch the Side of a Building

Ideally, you should have very few natural materials touching the side of your house or commercial building. Wood mulch is known for holding in moisture that can increase the risk of rot on wooden parts of the exterior. Decorative rocks are less likely to contribute to rot, but insects can use them as a stepping stone to get closer to the side of a building. If termites decide to live in the dirt beneath a decorative rock garden, having the decorative rocks too close to the house gives them a safe place to move from their nesting spot to the building. Keeping the decorative rocks an inch or two away from the side of the building prevents this from happening.

Use the Appropriate Level of Depth

At first glance, it might seem like it’s best to have a decorative rock bed that’s as deep as possible. While you should pile the decorative rocks deep enough to minimize movement, you should also avoid creating a haven for insects to live between and underneath. The ideal depth for a decorative rock garden is based on the size of the beach pebbles you place, whether they’re gold, gray, black, or mexican beach pebbles. For example, one-inch stones should be placed at a depth of around three inches. If you aren’t sure, ask your decorative rock supplier to guide you in making a decision on how deep to plan to make your decorative rock bed.

Reduce Moisture Around the Decorative Rock Bed

As a final termite deterrent, remember these insects thrive in areas where there’s a lot of moisture. Decorative rocks are great for increasing drainage, but you’ll need to be proactive to ensure this happens. Make sure to place the decorative rocks at an angle that slopes down and away from the house. If possible, use downspouts and gutter systems to direct rainwater as far away from the sides of your house as possible. Then check the decorative rock beds periodically to make sure there aren’t any flat or bare spots that collect moisture. If so, you can simply move the decorative rocks around to fill in that space and make it less suitable for termites. 

No matter what type of stones you choose, keeping pests away from them will maintain your landscape’s character and beauty. For expert advice on designing and maintaining your landscape with decorative rocks and pebbles, reach out to the experts at RS&P Rocks Stones & Pebbles, a premier landscape rock and supply superstore. We specialize in drought-tolerant landscaping materials, including a variety of colored pebbles and river rock. To learn how we can help you create the landscape of your dreams, call us today at (866) 380-0580.

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