Cleaning and Maintaining Interlocking Stone in Markham, Toronto and surrounding areas
Owners of interlocking stones, patio stones, stepping stones will eventually encounter weeds. Mother Nature will have her way; seeds will land and germinate in your driveway, walkway or patio. Seeing weeds sprout up between your interlocking stones is extremely frustrating. It can quickly make your stone surface look untidy. This yard problem is not unusual and it can be seen around the Markham and York Region.
It’s important to understand how weeds get in between your paving stones. Weeds typically grow when sand washes out, this allows for tiny seedlings to sneak into the spaces between your stonework’s joints.
Removing weeds from stone surfaces can be done by hand. An L-shaped interlock weed tool can help remove weeds, sand and debris between stone joints. It may be a time-consuming process, but it’s very important that all soil, roots and debris are removed before re-sanding takes place.
Another option is thermal weeding. This technique utilizes a flame-producing device such as a portable propane torch weeder. The goal of thermal weeding is to remove weeds some stone surfaces with less effort and without potentially harmful chemicals. It’s important to seek the help of a professional when considering thermal heating as a weed removal solution. Once the plant is exposed to the flame its cells will quickly burst and the weed will die. Ideally, the plant is simply overheated, not burnt. The burnt remains of weeds may look dead, but they can heal and start to regrow stronger than before. A professional will apply the right amount of heat, killing the plant’s cells and tissues and making the natural regrowth process impossible.
Utilizing a horticultural vinegar application to kill weeds is another popular solution in the Markham and York Region. This method kills weeds by utilizing acidity and dehydration. Horticultural vinegar is stronger than the household equivalent, with twice the amount of acetic acid. It’s best to use horticultural vinegar during dry weather. For thick growth, it may be best to trim the weeds before applying the vinegar.
A pressure washer can also be an effective tool for removing weeds from outdoor stonework surfaces. With an average of 600 to 2,000 psi, a pressure washer can loosen dirt and debris from interlocking stone spaces. Upon cleaning the joints it’s important to quickly refill the joints with the recommended jointing sand.
Weed problem may be caused by excessive space between pavers. These gaps could be caused by multiple factors including lack of a stable edge restraint, loss of base pad or jointing sand. It’s important to take care of any repairs as soon as possible.
Efflorescence is another challenge facing Markham homeowners. This natural process happens when salt and concrete evaporate over time and leave behind a white film. Efflorescence does not cause any structural damage to your stone or pavers. Over time efflorescence will disappear; usually, as soon as the weather returns to warmer temperatures. There are plenty of efflorescence washing cleaners on the market that should be professionally applied.
Markham interlocking stone installations face some of the most challenging weather conditions in the country. A constant combination of regular freeze-thaw cycles coupled with the region’s high amount of moisture is a recipe for weeds. Even, repetitive driving can result in settlement finding a home in the base and pavers of your stone driveway.
Hiring a Markham professional to perform your interlocking stone installation and long term maintenance is the best way to keep your stone looking great for years to come. Even the best installed stonework can develop weed issues, weeds are experts at finding places to grow and thrive. It only takes a couple of seedlings to spread across your entire stone walkway, patio or driveway. A Markham interlocking stone installer will understand the unique challenges facing Markham interlocking stone and will have experience and knowledge to help.