How to Clean Garden Stones (From Dirty Landscape Rocks to Bright White Garden Stones)

How to Clean Garden Stones (From Dirty Landscape Rocks to Bright White Garden Stones)

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If your garden stones aren’t looking so great after being out in the elements for months, we can help you get them clean again! We’ve researched the best solutions out there so we could answer your most pressing questions about cleaning your garden stones.

How do I clean large landscaping rocks?

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    Brush them with a broom and hose them down to get rid of dirt. Use a thick-bristled broom to brush away loose dirt and debris. Then, spray down the rocks with a high-pressure garden hose or a pressure washer to remove any dirt clinging to the surface of the rocks.[1]

How do I get algae off large landscaping rocks?

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    Soak the mold or algae spots with vinegar. Pour the vinegar straight on the affected areas, taking care not to get undiluted vinegar on your garden plants or grass since it will kill them. Give the vinegar about 5 minutes or so to penetrate the rocks.[2]

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    Scrub the algae spot with a scrub brush and soapy water. Mix a little dish soap with water and use the cleaner to scrub the algae spots with a brush. Then, rinse off the rocks with a garden hose.[3]

How can I get large garden rocks white again?

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    Mix bleach and water together and saturate stains with the cleaner. If you’re dealing with stubborn moss or other tough stains, just pour 3/4 cup (180 ml) of bleach into a plastic bucket and add 1 gallon (4 l) of water. Then, saturate the stained areas with the bleach mixture. You can pour, spray, or sponge on the mixture—do whatever works best for you.[4]

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    Wait 10 minutes before scrubbing and rinsing off the rocks. Give the bleach mixture a little time to work its magic, then grab a stiff wire bristle brush or regular scrub brush and scrub the affected areas to remove the stains. Then, rinse off the rocks with a high-pressure garden hose or pressure washer.[5]

How do I get debris out of garden rocks and gravel?

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    Buy wire mesh hardware cloth and cut a 2–3 ft (0.61–0.91 m) piece. You can buy a roll of 12 in (1.3 cm) wire mesh hardware cloth at any hardware store. Cut the piece you need off the roll and curl the longer ends under once or twice to create 2 handles.[6]

    • The handles make sifting easier and protects your hands from cuts.
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    Use the mesh sieve to separate the debris from the rocks. Lay down a tarp and place the wire mesh on top. Shovel some of the rock onto the wire mesh. Then, grab the makeshift handles, lift up the sieve, and gently shake it back and forth so dirt and debris fall through the mesh onto the tarp.[7]

    • If you don’t have a tarp, hold the sieve over a wheelbarrow.
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    Put the rocks back in place and haul the debris to your compost pile. If that’s not an option, scatter the debris on your lawn and mow over it with a mulching lawn mower. You can also bag it up and leave it on your curb for your town’s collection service.[8]

How do I clean dirt and mud off small garden rocks?

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    Run a large push broom over the surface as you hose them down. If you have a helper, have one person spray the rocks with your garden hose while the other person gently passes a large push broom over them. If that’s not an option, use a power hose on a low setting to rinse off the rocks.[9]

    • The rain will eventually rinse off the mud, but it’s understandable if you don’t want to wait!

How do I get small garden rocks white again?

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    Sift loose dirt and debris out of the rocks with wire mesh cloth. Cut off a 2–3 ft (0.61–0.91 m) piece of 12 in (1.3 cm) wire mesh hardware cloth to make a homemade sieve. Put the mesh over a tarp or wheelbarrow and shovel a batch of rocks on top of the sieve. Lift and shake the mesh to get rid of loose dirt and debris.[10]

    • You can haul the debris to your compost pile, scatter it on your lawn and mulch it, or bag it up for your town’s lawn collection service.[11]
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    Mix bleach and water in a bucket to make a cleaning solution. Pour ¼ cup (60 ml) of chlorine bleach into a large plastic bucket or wheelbarrow. Add 5 gallons (19 l) of water to the bleach to make a strong cleaner for whitening rocks.[12]

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    Soak the stained white rocks in the bleach solution for 1-2 days. Dump the dirty rocks in the bucket of cleaning solution and leave them for a couple of days until they’re nice and white again. Then, drain the cleaning solution into another bucket and put the rocks back in place in your garden. Dispose of the bleach water by pouring it down your drain.[13]

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    • Be careful not to get the bleach solution on your lawn or plants since it will kill them. Bleach water can also kill fish, so don’t use it around ponds.

How do I clean leaves out of garden gravel?

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    Pick them up daily if you have a small gravel area. Leaves can discolor your gravel if you leave them to decompose, so it’s best to get rid of them immediately. Just make a quick pass over the area every day, pick up any leaves you see, and dispose of them.[14]

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    Pass a leaf blower over larger gravel areas. Wait for a day when the leaves and gravel are completely dry. Starting in one corner and working your way across, pass the leaf blower over the gravel surface to blow away leaves and debris.[15]

    • Use the lowest setting so you don’t kick up a bunch of gravel as you work. It’s a good idea to wear a pair of protective goggles, too, just in case!
    • You can buy a leaf blower at any home improvement store or online.
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    Blow the leaves into a wooded area nearby if that’s an option. If not, blow the leaves onto your lawn and mow over them with a mulching lawn mower, rake them up and compost them, or bag them up for your city’s curbside leaf collection service.[16]

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