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There are many factors which dictate what is the best paving for tropical gardens. The most optimal paving for your tropical garden may simply come down to your own, personal, taste.
However, if the tropical or 'jungle' theme is the primary driver there are some fundamental ideas to consider.
Firstly, jungles and tropical forests are generally environments which regenerate at a fast pace. Popular culture likes to portray jungles reclaiming lost civilisations and covering over old ruins.
This can actually been seen in real life in examples such as Ta Prohm in Cambodia.
Ta Prohm in Cambodia.
Consequently, tropical gardens have a very rustic or even a 'deconstructed style' when it comes to paving. This typically translates into a broken style with smaller or misshapen paving units.
A good example of this would be a type of crazy paving with living joints. It is effective to see greenery creeping over or even reclaiming pathways and seating areas.
This can be achieved with creeping plants such as baby’s tears, or even moss. It is also common to associate rocks and boulders with jungle environments.
Therefore, natural stone always looks more effective than manufactured paving products.
This is even more effective if paving materials are the same colour and material as surrounding rocks and boulders.
However, in the end, the best paving for tropical gardens will depend upon your specific taste and style. Below I will include four paving materials and two other surfacing materials I think are best for tropical gardens.
Sandstone is one of the most common and popular paving materials. Not only is it affordable and versatile it comes in a wide range of colours and textures.
Rivern sandstone and sandstone sets in particular have a very rustic look perfect for tropical gardens.
Slate is an extremely durable, natural, stone perfect for paving a variety of garden styles. In general, tropical gardens look better with darker coloured paving materials.
The blacks, greys, greens and blues can contrast surrounding foliage and greenery very well.
Granite has been used as a paving material for many thousands of years and for good reason. This durable material is extremely dense and hardwearing.
It also has an attractive, visual texture with thousands of tiny crystals varying from white, grey, to black and even pink colours. Granite offers a rugged look with a non-slip texture.
Rustic block paving
Rustic, cobble, effect, block pavers such as Slimsett, Tegula, and Trio can also be very effective in tropical gardens.
These blocks naturally have a rustic look and perfect for creating organic shapes and curves. The smaller paving units provide plenty of opportunity to create broken up or deconstructed edges.
Other surfaces for tropical gardens
Self binding gravel
Self binding gravel is a surfacing material which consists of loose natural sands clays and rock particles.
This gravel is spread onto a compacted sub base and then compacted with a compaction plate. The result is a hard wearing surface, perfect for various garden styles.
Self binding gravel comes in a few different colours including reds, yellows and greys. It is particularly good at creating narrow, meandering trails through densely planted jungle borders.
Jungles and tropical rainforests are well known for their deep leaf litter and fertile soils. Consequently, bark chippings can make a great surfacing material for tropical gardens.
Not only can bark be an effective mulch for jungle planting it is also useful for paths and seating areas. Such applications can really break down the barriers between pedestrian and planting areas.
All you have to do is make sure you lay a weed suppressant membrane and a generous depth of bark mulch.
Why not visit our step by step article on how to create a low maintenance flower border with bark.
Thank you for reading our article on the best paving for tropical and jungle gardens.
If you require help planning or building a tropical garden do not hesitate to contact us.
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