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Homeowner sparks debate after seeking advice about installing controversial yard feature: 'You will never ever be able to get rid of all of it'

"It's like really awful sand."

"It's like really awful sand."

Photo Credit: Reddit

A post in r/NoLawns prompted an interesting discussion about creating a natural, kid-friendly yard covering around a homeowner's new patio that wasn't a traditional grass lawn or wooden bark chips. 

Although the Reddit user expressed interest in native plants, they mainly considered decomposed granite and drain pebbles to make up the area around the patio. 

They also said they live in a high desert climate, Zone 6b on the Plant Hardiness Zone Map, and their two children should also be able to play outside comfortably.

Commenters on the post proposed that granite pebbles were definitely not the best fit for the situation at hand. 

"Decomposed granite is a nightmare. It's sharp, it gets in the tread of your shoes and in your dog's/cat's feet, and it will track everywhere," a Reddit user replied. "You will never be able to go barefoot. You will never ever be able to get rid of all of it." 

Not only can decomposed granite create a huge mess for homeowners, but the chemical binders used in the stabilization process can also pose risks to the ecosystem. 

According to Lyngso Garden, the resin, coatings, or other additives in decomposed granite can release microplastics or exhibit toxic effects on the surrounding area.

"If OP is going to have a concrete patio and a portion of the yard in native plants, I'd just do the play area in a kid-friendly native turfgrass," another commenter chimed in

Switching to a native plant lawn is an excellent way to enhance your yard while reducing the amount of time and money you spend on outdoor maintenance. 

Native plants are those that have naturally evolved within a specific region, where they adapted to the local soil and wildlife over many years. 

Natural lawns filled with native plants generally require less maintenance, water, and fertilizer than traditional lawns, making them a more eco-friendly and cost-effective choice. 

Many commenters agreed that covering the yard in granite pebbles would be a nuisance to the OP and proposed alternatives that would be both practical and eco-friendly. 

"Decomposed granite is nasty stuff, especially if you have to dig through it or move it. It's like really awful sand," one Redditor said

"That is going to be very hot and dusty to play in. There is a no-mow, pollinator friendly grass developed in Colorado for full sun low water. Or maybe some walkable ground cover," a third recommended.

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