mulch and gravel

I have pine bark mulch next to the house foundation. It could be considered a fire hazard and I would like to replace it with gravel. Question!!! Should I remove the mulch, lay down plastic and then the gravel or just lay the plastic over the existing mulch, and then the gravel or just spread gravel over the existing mulch? Thanks for all comments.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Mulch next to the house is an attractive place for insects and other invertebrates to live and can pose a hazzard much greater than fire. Clear away all the mulch, lay down a fabric made for the job and cover with clean gravel. You might want to dig out about 2-4 in of soil so the gravel is even with the lawn, if you have one.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chas Hurst wrote:

. . Since the water will more readily drain down through the rock, shouldn't he ADD after removing the mulch to maintain a grade away from the house?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What water?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chas Hurst wrote:

. . When it rains. Sorry. Didn't put my entire thought down!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'm not sure rain is a consideration. How much runs down the side of the house?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chas Hurst wrote:

. . I don't have much overhang on my own house, so whatever falls from the sky falls along the house. :)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

But we're not discussing your house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chas Hurst wrote:

. . No, but that's why I asked the original question.
Everyone has always told me that any dirt abutting a house should be graded away from the house at the rate of 6" over 6'.
When you suggested he dig 2-4" below the level of the adjoining lawn (if he has one), I was curious.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What does everyone tell you about gravel? I removed all the the vegetation from around my house and layed down gravel, mostly to stop the rain from splattering dirt onto the siding and brick veneer. I dug down about 2 inches for the gravel so I could mow without trimming. Here in SE PA we get a fair amount of rain, but not much of it gets to the gravel bed and what little does is soaked up quickly. I suspect the OP lives in a drier area since the initial concern was the fire hazzard of mulch next to the house.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Apparently, the lad doesn't understand the correlation. Granted, not a usual part of this newsgroup topic. They are inter-related. And important.
1/4" fall on one foot of travel is considered adequate for ordinary drainage. It is wise to increase the fall as you also have problems with soaking of the material (soil) carrying the rainfall away from the house. There is no hard and fast rule. Seems to me it would depend on the soil type and foliage that covers the soil.
A hard and fast rule regarding drainage around a home is simple. The moisture level of the soil should be consistent adjoining the foundation. Excessive moisture and dryness of that soil can undermine the foundation of the house. Especially if a clay type soil.
--
Dave



Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Herb and Eneva wrote:

Andy comments: Around my house, I have lain down about a 3 foot wide piece of black plastic, then covered with a small diameter gravel. I use the thick black vinyl edging on the outside to make a border with the grass.... The black plastic will deteriorate in sunlight, but when covered with rock or gravel it will go for at least two dozen years, since I did this at a previous house 20 years ago and when I moved, the plastic was still in very good shape. If you use landscape cloth, the weeds WILL find a way thru, but are controllable. With black plastic, they can only get thru the occasional seam or hole.
To put shrubs in, I clear out the gravel, and cut the plastic about a foot larger diameter than the diameter of the plant root ball. Then I put the gravel back on. If I have the landscape fabric handy, I'll put it around the shrub but if I've run out of it, I don't bother.... Rain will easily go thru the gravel, and the black plastic will retain the moisture in the border. I know that there may be those who will disagree with this, but it has worked well for me for a very long time. Any time I needed to put a shrub in a new place, the ground under the plastic was ALWAYS moist......
Black plastic is not impermeable, and water will pass thru, but very very slowy. It make a great "vapor" barrier as well as a weed barrier.... But, for that reason, you don't want to have a layer of mulch beneath it since insects, mice, fungus, snakes ---- all can find a home there, and that's generally undesireable.....
My location is North Texas and the soil has a lot of clay in it. That may make a difference...
Andy in Eureka, Texas
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.