Creating a Stone Mosaic Front Garden Path

8 Materials
$900
7 Days
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The Mission: Replacing an ugly concrete pathway with a unique and intricate stone mosaic pathway. (Yes I have the Mission Impossible theme in my head)


A lot of hard work but well worth the effort!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, It served its purpose but time to go
It served its purpose but time to go!

Our front path was originally ugly grey concrete that I water stained brown 3 years ago to make it bearable and so it would go with our new siding. Finally it’s time to put in the pathway I’ve dreamt about!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, Goodbye old ugly pathway
Goodbye old ugly pathway!!

First...I had help removing the old pathway. It was jackhammered, dug down, framed and tamped in 4 inches of gravel for a solid frost friendly base. What a nice clean palette to play with!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, So exciting
So exciting!

Over the past several months, I’d gone to Home Depot and a few different landscape suppliers to gradually build up my stone collection for this project.


I ended up with quite the stockpile of stones in a variety in sizes, shapes and colors. I also started buying 80lb bags of Type S mortar 2 at a time.

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, A rainbow of stones
A rainbow of stones!

I used larger flatter stones as stepping stones and lots of smaller stones for the detail work.


First, I had to separate all the smaller stones into color groups. Then I laid out the larger stones for placement and get a sense of how much detail work I was looking at, which was a lot!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, This is only some of the stones
This is only some of the stones

laying it out first really helped with the planning!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, It s starting to come together
It’s starting to come together!

Mixing the mortar was my least favorite part. I was so nervous that I’d mix it too thin! I just had to be patient and add the water gradually and it all worked out.

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, Not my picture but wanted to show the texture
Not my picture but wanted to show the texture

Each little stone needed to be set by hand so I worked with one bag at a time. I had to work fairly quickly to get them in before the mortar set too much. I lengthened the dry time by working early in the morning before the sun worked it’s way around.


It looked like an unholy mess while I was setting them but I kept reminding myself it would be fine :)

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, It was scary not know how it really looked
It was scary not know how it really looked!

As each section dried, I would gently scrub away the excess mortar with a wire brush and rag. I had to be quite gentle because I did not want to dislodge any stones.


Doing it this way made it possible for me to see what I’d done in the previous section and helped deciding stone placement for the next section.

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, The vision is coming to life
The vision is coming to life!

In total for a 12’ x 4’ path, I used a 400-500lbs of stones and eight 80lb bags of mortar (phew!). The final steps are letting it cure for a week and spraying it down multiple times a day so it doesn’t dry too quickly and crack.


This part I still need to do..scrub it with muriatic acid to remove any mortar residue rinse really really well. The final step is to use a stone enhancer and sealer. This will make it absolutely pop and look exactly as it does when it wet!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, What it looks like now before the acid
What it looks like now before the acid

Wait for it.....BLAM!!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, What it looks like wet look like sealed
What it looks like wet & look like sealed.

I am so happy with the results!


I keep getting asked how long it took and it’s so hard to pin down with the hours of hand sorting the stones, placing them, letting each section dry and cleaning it before starting the next one, and the controlled curing. I would have to guesstimate not counting the sorting and curing, about 4 hours per bag of mortar.

creating a stone mosaic front garden path, Love it
Love it!! 💕

For the left side of the path, I’m planning to get some large stones and put some purple phlox or creeping rock cress flowers. I’ll add the picture when that part is all done!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path
After the acid clean and wood frame removal.

 UPDATE: Today the wood framing was removed and the muriatic acid wash was done! Now it really pops!

creating a stone mosaic front garden path

I will be applying the stone enhance/sealer next week!


 NOTE: The suggested materials after this post are not the products I actually used. They were added by Hometalk, not me. I used:

  • Sakrete Type S Mortar (grey)
  • Miracle Sealants Stone Enhancer and Sealer.
creating a stone mosaic front garden path

UPDATE!! It’s finally finished! I can’t even begin to say how happy I am with it!


The perennials I planted by the house are Hoffman Blue Campanula

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