Creating a Fragrant Walkway

fragrant walkway

An Oregano plant after 2 months

It is really simple to make a nice, fragrant walkway, if you have a sunny location and flagstones, slate or other flat stones. The idea is to have a walkway that gives off a great aroma when you walk on it.

The first step is to choose a location for the path. It needs to be in a place that gets plenty of sunshine and it has to be remembered that the path needs to be wide enough that a person can walk down the trail easily. That would most likely be at least three feet wide.

Once the location is selected, the next step would be to dig up the path, removing rocks, pebbles, weeds, grass and debris. Think of it as a place where you are going to put in a garden, because in a way, that is exactly what you will be doing. The soil should be fertile, but it doesn’t need to be extremely rich. If you have clay soil, it would need to be amended before putting in the walkway, because the soil needs to drain well.

After the soil has been prepared, top the soil with a mixture of sand and cheap potting soil. This layer only needs to be two to three inches thick, because its purpose is to give the plants a good start.

Next, place the stones so they are about two inches apart, on top of the sand and potting soil mixture. This is your chance to be artistic. It is best if the stones are at least a foot wide and long and an inch or two deep.

Now comes the fun part; planting the plants. My own preference is to use low growing and hardy herbs. These can be ornamental herbs – the kinds that aren’t meant for culinary use – but they don’t need to be. Both thyme and oregano are good choices. There are also quite a few kinds of thyme that you can use.

Alternately, you could plant peppermint, spearmint, chocolate mint or lemon mint (lemon balm). The mints tend to grow tall, but if you are going to be stepping on them, they shouldn’t have the chance to get much taller than the walkway. Mint can also or instead be planted on either side of the walkway, too.

The plants are put into the potting soil mixture between the stones, planted a few inches apart. After they are planted, water the walkway well, then water every few days. The soil should be allowed to partly dry out, but the herbs should have enough water that they can begin expanding their root systems. During the first few weeks, avoid walking on the stones, to give the plants a chance to become established.

When the herbs are growing well, you can start using the walkway. Also, at this point, it shouldn’t be necessary to water quite as frequently, since the stones and the potting soil mixture should help retain moisture.

Within a month or so, you should have a very fragrant walkway that gives you a good aroma every time you walk down the path. You can even increase the aroma by planting lavender along the sides of the path, where you don’t have mint growing.

What makes this even better is that thyme, oregano and mint are hardy perennials, so they should come back year after year.

This is a yard project that you just have to smell to believe.



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