Landscaping bricks can add character, charm and structure to your yard or garden. However, they can also break the bank. Premade landscaping bricks from a nursery or home improvement store can range in price anywhere from a couple of dollars a brick to $10 a brick or more, depending on the size and style of bricks. If you need more than a couple of bricks this can quickly add up, and your small landscaping project can wind up costing you a fortune.
Fortunately, there is a simple way that you can make your own landscaping bricks for a fraction of the cost of buying them already made. It will take a little more effort on your part, but you will save a lot of money and have your own unique, one of a kind bricks to use for your project. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:
– Concrete Sand Topping Mix (Quickrete is usually the most common brand)
– A small trowel or spreader
– A scoop or large spoon
– Plastic containers in the size & shape you want your bricks. You can use food containers, planters or any other plastic container that is wider at the opening than at the base (if the opening is narrower than the base you won’t be able to get your bricks out after the concrete sets) Choose a container that is the same height that you want your bricks to be so you can fill it to the top and get a consistent height for all of your bricks.
– Concrete stain
Now that you’ve gathered together everything you need you can get started making your bricks.
1. Scoop some of the sand topping mix into your container. Add a small amount of water and smooth out the topping mix so it is level in your container. The consistency of the mix after adding the water should be similar to peanut butter. Gradually add more topping mix and more water on top until you have filled your container. Always add water slowly, mix and add more if necessary. It’s very easy to overdo it on the water if you aren’t careful. If your mix gets too wet sprinkle more topping mix on top to help soak up some of the extra water.
2. When your container is filled to the top take your trowel or spreader and smooth it out. You can also tap the container on the ground which will smooth the surface and release any air bubbles that are trapped in the concrete. Once the top is smooth, set the container aside and start another brick in another container.
3. Allow the bricks to cure for 24 to 48 hours before removing them from their containers. The amount of time it takes for the concrete to cure will depend on how much water you added and how large/thick the bricks are that you are making.
4. When the bricks are cured and removed from their containers you can color them using concrete stain. Follow the instructions on the stain can to get the best results. Allow the stain to dry completely before setting your bricks in your landscape.
As you can see, making your own landscaping bricks is really quite simple. A bag of concrete costs between $3 and $5, and you can get many bricks out of a single bag. You can reuse your plastic containers to make as many bricks as you need. When deciding how many containers to purchase be sure to consider that each brick will need to cure for as long as two days. That means if you only get one container you will only be able to make a single brick every few days. To make larger quantities invest in more containers so you can have multiple bricks curing at the same time.