What is Gravel Used For?

February 26, 2024
Despite gravel’s commonplace and humble status, gravel is one of the most highly sought after substances in Northern VA. Gravel is produced (due to its many benefits) by dredging companies hauling up massive quantities of these small rocks from the beds of waterways. But what is all of this gravel being used for? Let’s explore the usefulness of these small sized rocks.
Construction Material:
Over the last hundred or so years, gravel has been elevated from rumble to rock star status as it is increasingly used in more and more projects. Today, it is used to make concrete, to create foundations for new roads, to mix with asphalt, fill construction sites, and even create other construction materials like blocks, pipes, and bricks.
Landscaping and Outdoor Design:
Gravel is the main material used in creating pathways, driveways, and outdoor patios. The landscape industry flourishes thanks to gravel because many homeowners desire these types of features to enhance curb appeal and create perennial interest.
Erosion Control:
Erosion is the process of soil being washed away by rain or tide waters in Virginia. Gravel is spread across areas where runoff creates a potential for mudslides, like mountainsides and yard hill slopes. The gravel can be layered on top of dams, fences, planks, and patches of dirt in order to prevent the soil from being swept away by water. This works because the soil is able to latch onto the gravel, ensuring it stays in place.
Agricultural Uses:
To create agricultural lime, which farmers use to reduce the acidity of their soil and promote crop growth. It is also ground down, and used as a form of mineral feed for poultry, like chickens and turkeys. Poultry requires small rocks and minerals in order to properly break down their food.
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