How to Install Decomposed Granite (DG) Step by Step.

Hey guys! This is my process of installing decomposed granite. DG is a pretty incredible product, and there’s so many different uses for it in the landscape. In this video we are going to look at a step by step process of how to install it in a pathway or patio. We discuss everything from demo and preparation, to what kind of edging to use (steel edging, pressure treated wood, and composite, aka bender board), how to install the weed barrier (geotextile fabric), and what calculations you should use to order the correct amount of DG to fill your area. We also look at what kinds of tools are needed, like a vibratory (compactor) plate, and a tamper. There are a lot of techniques used here and please keep in mind that these can vary a bit. But this is a great basic easy process of installing DG. I’d rate it about a 6 or 7 out of 10 on the difficulty scale. So if you are up for a good DIY weekend project that will yield a pretty awesome result, this is it!

Here is the formula I use to calculate the amount of DG we need to fill a space.

L (length) X W (width) X H (height) / 27

Note: Make sure the measurements of L, W, and H are all in feet. Then divide by 27 and this will give you the cubic yards needed.

OK guys, I really hope this helps…let me know if you guys decide to try and how it comes out! It’s often hard to hit every single detail in a short video, so feel free to shoot over any questions!

Happy DG’ing!

-Dom

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Music credits

BP Intro
Original music by Dominic Masiello

Swanky Strut
Pala
https://app.soundstripe.com/songs/7450

Malibu Sunrise
Noah Smith
https://app.soundstripe.com/songs/9649

Nice Vibes
Neon Beach
https://app.soundstripe.com/songs/9481

Purple People Tweeter
New Wave Sounds

50 Comments

  1. Patty Mitchell on December 5, 2020 at 9:12 pm

    so you don’t water it at all during the installation of the DG? i’ve read that it needs to be watered in layers as installing. Lots of different information.

  2. Caputo on December 5, 2020 at 9:12 pm

    great stuff, going to tackle a 17′ x 17′ area today…. question tho, other videos suggest wetting the first layer of dg, tamping, and they doing the same with a second layer?

  3. Scape Smartly on December 5, 2020 at 9:13 pm

    Skip the weed fabric. IMHO it has no long term benefit and many long term negatives.

  4. April Dudley on December 5, 2020 at 9:16 pm

    Hello. We are planning on using DG in our front yard as a hardscape. My question is, should we or should we not buy and use stabilizer? No businesses around us seem to carry the stabilizer integrated DG, so we have to purchase from Home Depot or the business where we end up buying the DG. Given that DG hardens on its own, and there won’t be too much traffic in our front yard (there will be some, but probably not every day), we don’t know what to do. Any advice? We live in SF Bay Area.

  5. Chase Sanders on December 5, 2020 at 9:20 pm

    I am working on a 12×15 ft space. Do I need to rent a vibrator plate or can I get away with just using the tamper? Thanks!

  6. Justin Zumwalt on December 5, 2020 at 9:22 pm

    Thanks! great video, going for it this weekend!

  7. manuel rosado on December 5, 2020 at 9:22 pm

    DG thank You so much for sharing Your knowledge easy to understand vide right on

  8. joe conner on December 5, 2020 at 9:25 pm

    Where do you get your bender board?

  9. Diane Celento on December 5, 2020 at 9:29 pm

    Just subbed. Great video!

  10. Rick Ragusa on December 5, 2020 at 9:29 pm

    Does the road base go on top or underneath the weed fabric?

  11. last, first on December 5, 2020 at 9:33 pm

    Thanks for step by step clear instructions however, being "budget" plants, would have appreciated costs attached. How much to rent the compactor? Stabilizing is expensive you say, compared to what? How much are bender boards, steel vs treated wood? These things would make these types of videos ten times better as us budget minded diy-er types can calculate what we can afford and plan accordingly. Thanks

  12. Cheryle Robertson on December 5, 2020 at 9:36 pm

    I’m in Minnesota. Is there a reason I should not use DG?

  13. R Levine on December 5, 2020 at 9:36 pm

    I’m thinking about doing a DG walkway on the side of our house. We live in Socal and the ground tends to have a lot of clay mixed in with the soil, so in the heavy rains water collects way too much. There is a drain line somewhere beneath the surface for the gutters. Is it practical for me to incorporate (above surface Atrium Drainage Grate) drains into the walkway?

  14. Sabrina Phillip on December 5, 2020 at 9:37 pm

    great video! you touched on the topic of soil under the DG. I have a very hard, clay-heavy soil. Are you saying that in this case i wouldn’t need the rock layer? What depth of DG do you recommend? thanks in advance!

  15. Alexandra McKay on December 5, 2020 at 9:38 pm

    This is a great video. What would you suggest to get a similar look but more conducive to a wet and cold climate

  16. Lori Moreno on December 5, 2020 at 9:39 pm

    I bought crushed granite but it did not have the stuff that makes it hard. What can I add to it

  17. Nick Valente on December 5, 2020 at 9:40 pm

    So in addition to having clay soil, the spot I’m looking to do this project at is very uneven. Should I get dirt to level out the space or should I just get extra gravel and use that to help level it out a bit?

  18. Megan Margaret Sullivan on December 5, 2020 at 9:41 pm

    Thank you so much for making this tutorial! Now I know I’d rather save the money to have someone install our project for us so it looks just right:) This video is terrific and really, really helpful. Thank you!

  19. terrence domingo on December 5, 2020 at 9:42 pm

    you forgot the stabilizer or did i miss that?

  20. edelwisa samson on December 5, 2020 at 9:43 pm

    Hi just had DG installed in my patio but they re dug some areas to put in flagstones and now some parts are loose, can i recompact with a plate? how to do that? do i wet the DG and pass the plate?thank you. do you suggest a DG rainkoat?

  21. J Ca on December 5, 2020 at 9:43 pm

    if edging was not placed prior to the placement of the decomposed granite. Is it possible to add the edging after installation?

  22. Travis Manach on December 5, 2020 at 9:44 pm

    The location I want to install the DG patio is next to my back deck. However, the area isn’t flat. It slopes gradually away from the house. I’m guessing I make it as level as possible before installing my edge material, but what do you do if the edge material (ex. redwood bender board) is not tall enough to be level with the side closer to the house?

  23. jjsmitty7 on December 5, 2020 at 9:47 pm

    What is the best aggregate subbase to use:
    class 2,
    class 2 recycled
    class 2 permeable base,
    or is crushed drain rock ever used?
    Thanks!

  24. jj jj on December 5, 2020 at 9:48 pm

    don’t use weed fabric…

  25. Judah Ben Hur on December 5, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    Very good job. Thanks! Clear explanation of DG. The Zoolander spoof at 1:15 was fun.

  26. H. T. on December 5, 2020 at 9:50 pm

    Great step by step! Appreciate the video. If you have plants in the dg, how would you recommend running the drip irrigation?

  27. Tim Cade on December 5, 2020 at 9:51 pm

    I know you mentioned that it might not be good to use in a place that it rains a lot. So here is my question, I live in San Antonio where it is usually dry, however we do get the occasional rain and I have a path that I drive my motorcycle on to get it turned around and I back it in. The problem that I am having is when it does rain, the ground gets super soft making it almost unable to drive on it at all. Would this work for those occasional times? For the most part it would remain dry, and by the next day it is usually dried out enough to drive on, albeit carefully.

  28. Denise Valdez on December 5, 2020 at 9:52 pm

    Thank you!!!

  29. Pepper Tree Villa on December 5, 2020 at 9:52 pm

    Thanks for this. We now feel we have a basic knowledge of how to install DG. Very helpful. This will be perfect for our backyard in East Contra Costa County.

  30. Coach Matuszak on December 5, 2020 at 9:53 pm

    I’m making a path that was previously a bunch of rocks. I’m removing as many of the rocks as my energy will allow, however if I bury some of the rocks under the DG (with stabilizer), will those rocks resurface to the top??

  31. Robert James - Life on December 5, 2020 at 9:54 pm

    Very helpful. Thx

  32. Linda McMahon on December 5, 2020 at 9:55 pm

    Wondering how long does it take to harden before you can put furniture on it please?

  33. Alejandro Lago on December 5, 2020 at 9:55 pm

    Great content here, thanks. That steel border looks great. How thick and how does one stake it?

  34. shootingstar819 on December 5, 2020 at 9:57 pm

    Thanks for the tutorial on doing DG. I am trying to apply it to my backyard project in LA, and am stumbling with a few steps. Since I have a leveling issue from the dirt to the pool, and the deck, as well as the driveway and garage, I am wondering do I need that road base (or aggregate) layer to sort of have all the levels meet in the middle somewhere? Then would I put the layer of dirt on top of that then the weed barrier followed by the DG? I’m just trying to figure out what steps are needed and if the amount of road base would be less because of all my leveling issues. Thank you in advance.

  35. James McClaren on December 5, 2020 at 9:58 pm

    Seemed like a very long video just to lay 30seconds of DG.

  36. Cleto Cuevas jr on December 5, 2020 at 9:59 pm

    Is DG cheaper and more beneficial than turf?

  37. Abigail Morales on December 5, 2020 at 9:59 pm

    Hi I have a question I want to use bricks to edge around my dg how many would I need to use for an area 23ft x 10 ft. Thank you so much I am having trouble to figure this out.

  38. electricamir248 on December 5, 2020 at 9:59 pm

    At 7:13 looked like plastic sheet.
    Earlier you were using black landscape fabric.
    Also how do you stop weeds from growing out of the dg? I have been fighting the weeds. And my dg is so dusty.
    What went wrong?

  39. Paul B. on December 5, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    I’ve watched thousands of landscaping ‘how-to’ videos lately (o.k – major exaggeration lol) and so happy that I just found yours. I am a newbie to working in the yard in my house in Los Angeles and I find your vids very helpful. I ripped out the turf in my small front yard and going H2O tolerant – I’ve settled on a DG pathway and landscape rock so far – but looking for more inspiration.

  40. Jill Mitchell on December 5, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    Excellent video! Thank you.

  41. donsheffler on December 5, 2020 at 10:02 pm

    Question: Once you screed to level, when you compact it don’t you drop the level? Would you then add more, screed and compact again?

  42. JOE A on December 5, 2020 at 10:02 pm

    You sed no wrinkles on the weed burrier, but on the video the guys have many waves and wrickles

  43. Diane Celento on December 5, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    We were going to do our front yard. If we want to put plants in can we do that later? Or do plants have to be put in the DG as you are laying it?

  44. Indy Van der Geer on December 5, 2020 at 10:04 pm

    Thank you so much for your video!
    Very helpful and clear!
    A question I have is; would decomposed granite stay put on a slight slope when it pours? Or would it wash away? And would it drain enough of the storm water, or would it be best to use crushed stone or pea gravel for this situation? (The yard is sloped 4’ at a length of 40’)

  45. Vince Martinez on December 5, 2020 at 10:06 pm

    nice video Thanks

  46. Keith Reynolds on December 5, 2020 at 10:07 pm

    Great information. How do you stake down the steel edging. Should I weld on some angle iron to take stakes or would welding the corners alone work?

  47. Talene Ghazarian on December 5, 2020 at 10:09 pm

    Thank you so much for this video. Currently trying to figure out how to landscape my front yard. I have a sag palm in the backyard that needs moving. Are the palms in this house an okay distance from the home? Or would you advise further? Thank you!

  48. Sean Valdez on December 5, 2020 at 10:10 pm

    Great video! Can I plant your bullet proof plant combo over DG? The area we want to put the DG and plants wouldn’t be quite level and has a minor slope. Thanks for the videos and sharing your knowledge

  49. Mike Alvarado on December 5, 2020 at 10:11 pm

    Do you offer landscape design services?

  50. charlene jones on December 5, 2020 at 10:12 pm

    Can you put dg over cracked asphalt driveway?

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