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How Much Does Crushed Or Decomposed Granite Cost?

Typical Range: $124 - $303

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Whether for driveways or to surround trees, crushed or decomposed granite can be a versatile material that prevents weed growth and makes an outdoor space more appealing. These two are not the same material, though. It’s important to note that crushed granite tends to have sharp edges and shapes. Decomposed granite is natural as it decomposes over time and is not as sturdy as crushed granite. Learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of crushed or decomposed granite, how much to budget, and whether it is the right choice for your property.

On This Page:

  1. Crushed & Decomposed Granite Material and Installation Costs
  2. Labor Costs for Installation
  3. Common Uses
  4. Types of Crushed & Decomposed Granite
  5. Advantages of Crushed & Decomposed Granite
  6. Disadvantages of Crushed & Decomposed Granite

Material and Installation Costs

Crushed granite and decomposed granite cost about $3 to $5 per cubic yard, or an average of $1 to $3 per square foot. These prices include delivery and distribution which can save time if you plan to install it as a DIY project.

The cost to install a crushed or decomposed granite driveway averages between $100 and $300 for a 400-square foot area. It’s not the best option in climates with heavy rainfall, however, because it can be washed away. You can prevent this erosion if you invest in the type of decomposed granite that comes with stabilizer, but it’s worth considering other driveway materials if you live in an area that experiences a lot of storms..

In addition to the cost of the natural material itself, installing crushed or decomposed granite will require the following equipment:

  • Landscaping fabric
  • Soil compactor
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Shovels
  • Landscaping rakes
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Labor Costs

While some homeowners opt to install crushed or decomposed granite on their own, it is almost always better to hire a professional for the job. Just a single cubic yard of the materials will fill up the back of an entire standard pickup truck and many projects require substantially more crushed granite.

Typically, professional rock installation companies will charge by the square foot for each project, but others may quote a price for the entire project or simply ask to be paid by the hour. As such, it might be between $70 and $80 per hour to have a professional lay crushed and decomposed granite for you. On a square footage basis, it’s estimated that a 400 square foot project will be somewhere between $124 and $303 for professional installation.

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Uses for Crushed & Decomposed Granite

Crushed granite is an incredibly versatile material that can be used in landscaping projects for both small residential jobs and much larger commercial spaces. Some of the many ways you can used crushed or decomposed granite include:

  • As a walkway/trail/path in a garden or backyard
  • In driveways, especially for longer driveways where asphalt or concrete would be prohibitively expensive
  • Xeriscape ground cover
  • Visual transition between a formal garden and the wilderness beyond
  • Mulching material in a garden bed
  • Makeshift patio when you don’t want to lay concrete (good for dining area, too)
  • As a weed controller when you don’t want to lay more grass (in small amounts)
  • Underlayment for a firepit or hearth

When you’re deciding what to use crushed or decomposed granite for in your yard, remember that it comes in a wide variety of colors and granular sizes, so you can always find one that will match perfectly to suit your needs.

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Types of Crushed & Decomposed Granite Available

Photo courtesy of Danny's Landscaping & Irrigation Company in Houston, TX

Anyone still on the fence about the utility or look of crushed granite might be pleased to learn that it comes in a variety of sizes and colors to best fit in with a property's design or style. Generally, the most affordable options are a gray color, but an increasing number of suppliers are selling crushed granite in bolder hues like red or even blue. However, buyers should be prepared to pay extra, as much as twice as much, to purchase colored rock.

Photo courtesy of Blooms to Grow in Fort Worth, TX

Decomposed granite comes in three forms: natural, stabilized and resin-coated.

  • Natural is used for mulching around trees and gardens. It provides nutrients to the soil and lasts for a longer time than mulch.
  • Stabilizer can be added on top of another gravel and then added again as a loose layer.
  • Resin is similar to asphalt, but looks more natural and is also permeable.

Decomposed granite also comes in about 30 different color shades, so you can find just about any color to match your landscape and home exterior.

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Advantages of Crushed or Decomposed Granite

There are many advantages to installing crushed or decomposed granite in your yard as compared to other landscaping options.

  • Price. While not the cheapest choice on the market, it is far less expensive than alternatives like paving the space or laying large paving stones.
  • Aesthetic appeal. It can give real shape and style to an otherwise ordinary outdoor living
  • Maintenance. Regardless of whether you’re using it for a driveway or path, stones don’t require much maintenance. You may have to replace them every now and again, but that’s about it.
  • Weeding. When compared to an area covered with grass or mulch, the amount of weeds you’ll run into with granite is significantly reduced, especially if you’re xeriscaping the whole yard in it.
  • Variety. As aforementioned, these stones come in a wide range of colors and sizes, so you aren’t limited in choice. This means you can personalize and mix or match to find one that fits your yard’s style.
  • Versatility. Crushed or decomposed granite has so many different uses that you can have a bag on hand, if needed, as spare mulch or to fill in a spot if you have a hole. It’s not a limiting landscape item.  
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Disadvantage of Crushed or Decomposed Granite

Just like any material, there are also some drawbacks to using crushed or decomposed granite in landscaping projects.

  • It is not smoothed; therefore, it has some sharp edges. While it might be possible to walk barefoot on natural stones like pea gravel or Mexican beach pebbles, crushed or decomposed granite is much tougher on the foot.
  • It can fall apart quickly because they are naturally loose, which means that clear lines may get blurred as pieces of granite move over time due to wind and rain.
  • It can get tracked around on the underside of shoes. It is not uncommon for homeowners to find pieces inside their home from time to time.
  • Cars will leave indentations in the surface when they are parked or even when driving. This will go away over time, however, as the granite is increasingly compacted into the ground.
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