Installing a patio opens up your garden for casual outdoor living. Slate is a practical and attractive choice if you intend to build a non-slip patio from natural stone. Slate is also heavier than many other stone patio designs and is best transported with a wheelbarrow and careful lifting. When creating your patio design, decide if you prefer rectangular tiles or irregularly snapped pieces for a more rustic style.
It is important to think about how you will use the patio to get a general idea of how large the area should be. Think of the shape of the stones you lay as you decide on the shape, and try to limit the number of stones you need to cut. Walk the site and consider areas that will get the most sun and shade, especially if you want to grow a container garden. Rather than laying the patio as a rectangle, curved stone patio deeper into the yard can buy you an extra hour of sunlight.
Prepare the site
When the site is described with landscape color, remove all growth from the area and dig until the location is 8 inches deep. If the stone patio is near your house, class the earth 1/4 inch each foot so that the water will run away from the building. Stabilize the soil to prevent it from moving under your foundation, which may upset the stones. Run a compactor machine over the ground three times or until the ground feels hard and flat. Start in the middle of the area so you can learn how to handle the machine before driving it near the house.