Incorporating rocks and stones into a landscape is a wonderful way to bring the natural beauty to the yard and blessed the surroundings with the aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and spiritual essence. Natural stone is a versatile element used for enriching the landscape. Apart from natural stone, artificial stones are also frequently used for the landscaping design. Now the question is which one is better? And what to choose?
Natural stones are excavated from mountain ranges and sea beds while artificial landscaping rocks are generally made up of the clay and concrete. It has a wide variety, few popular ones are shotcrete, GFRC rock paneling, polyurethane foam, Styrofoam, plastic, or fiberglass panels. Natural rock and artificial rocks can be differentiated on the basis of –shape and size, availability, weight, color, durability, cost, transportation and pattern.
- SHAPE AND SIZE: Artificial rocks are moldable in various shapes and sizes as per the requirement whereas real rocks have a specific shape and size; they are often not as easy to reshaping as artificial rocks.
- AVAILABILITY: landscape supplies are limited, depending upon distance of the site of excavation. It requires a lot of heavy machinery and manpower. It is burdensome to supply the natural rocks to other parts of the planet. On the other hand, there is no limit of supply in case of artificial rocks.
- WEIGHT: Artificial rocks are less heavy than the natural landscaping stones. Natural stones require a lot of man power and heavy machinery to carry. Artificial can be handled by a few persons without indulging any machinery (E.g. shotcrete are formed by spraying in a rebar structure and carved, on -site). One of the major backdrops of the concrete is its tendency to break. Due to its light nature, artificial rocks are preferable for overhangs.
- COLOR- Colors of natural landscaping rocks are limited and cannot be changed, whereas there is no limitation of colors and texture in faux rocks. The color of the artificial rocks can be changed whenever one pleases to. Artificial rocks may get fade with time, unlike natural rocks. It is difficult to differentiate between two, simply by looking at them because artists are well trained imbibe a natural rock.
- DURABILITY- In certain parts of your home’s landscape, durability is an important factor. Fake rocks are prepared as per the need of the hour. Therefore, artificial landscaping rocks are highly durable. For instance, water resistance power of fiberglass is very high. It is not prone to crack due to extreme climatic changes as its mechanical strength is very high.
- LOCATION- Natural rocks are accessible in the areas of its excavation and their supply is limited. The transportation of natural rocks is highly laborious. Artificial rocks can be made available at any place without any transportation problem and can be fixed anywhere, from small doors to rooftop.
- COST- The cost of artificial rocks is comparatively very low as that of real rocks. Natural landscaping rocks are incredibly heavy. The cost is not for the rock itself, but for hauling it from the source to the working site. Natural rocks would be financially unrealistic solution for larger scale projects. Real rocks require more maneuver and machinery which is again a very huge expense.
- HEAT- Volcanic rock, pea gravel, and similar stones have a very high capacity for retaining heat. Rocks also reflect a lot of heat off of their exposed surfaces. This can create a hot environment around the area while artificial rocks do not absorb this much of heat and keep the temperature intact.
- PATTERNS- Natural rock can be imitated by the artificial rock contractors. Pattern of an artificial rock basically depends on the talent of the artist. Generally, in larger rocks, finishing issues have been noticed, due to the variation in the ability of the artists.
Smart landscaping does not require big money investments, it needs intelligent choice. Artificial landscaping rocks can save expenses without compromising with the quality of the rock. In larger projects, whether related to a house or office, faux and natural rocks both are used. Artificial rocks provide a huge variety of options to choose and it is pocket friendly and natural rocks have their mythological importance.