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Greetings there!

If you’re fixing to get your hands on some top-notch hardscaping materials, then decomposed granite (DG) or crushed granite are great. These materials can be used for all sorts of hardscaping projects, but there are a few differences between them that I am excited to share with you.

Now, decomposed granite is made by none other than Mother Nature herself, by weathering and erosion of hard granitic rock. This happens because one of the 3 main components of granite, feldspar, weathers into a clay mineral called kaolin. With more water exposure, it further breaks down into decomposed granite. DG comes in a range of colors from beige to brown to gold and gray.

On the flip side, crushed granite is a product of running granite through a crusher. The crushed material is run through a screen to sort it into different sizes. Sizes range from dust fines to small pea-sized particles (3/8-inch minus) to larger 1.5-to-4-inch chunks or a mixture of them for easier compaction.

Decomposed Granite

Decomposed granite is commonly used for pathways, patios, and driveways.

There are three types of decomposed granite that differ in their uses: loose/raw, stabilized, and resin-coated.

  • Loose DG is best suited as a mulch around flowers and trees and for permeable paving. Raw loose DG is best used on low-traffic patios and pathways.
  • Stabilized DG is mixed with a binder for increased durability in high-traffic areas such as patios and walkways.
  • Meanwhile, resin-coated DG, suitable for heavy traffic areas such as driveways, creates an asphalt-like impermeable surface once it has cured.

Decomposed granite requires periodic maintenance, such as weeding, redressing worn-out spots, and recompacting’.

Crushed Granite

Crushed granite is great for drainage and aeration due to its jagged edges and irregular shape. It’s often used as a base material for driveways, pathways, and patios, as well as for retaining walls and drainage systems. It can even be used as a decorative element in garden beds and borders.

Some folks use crushed granite as a cheaper decomposed granite alternative.

To wrap Up

The primary difference between the two is that crushed granite is a product of a rock crusher while decomposed granite results from natural weathering.

This causes differences in their texture: decomposed granite is a fine-grained, sandy material that compacts tightly and creates a smooth surface, whereas crushed granite has a coarser texture that makes it ideal for creating free-draining surfaces.

Both crushed granite and decomposed granite are relatively affordable, aesthetically pleasing, and functional. They both create a rustic-looking landscape and are usually sold in bulk by the cubic yard. A cubic yard (~1.4 tons) can cover about 80 to 100 sq ft at a 3-inch depth. Some of the material is also bagged and sold that way.

George Gitau

Meet George, an advocate for traditional craftsmanship. I will provide you with educational content, techniques and ideas for your next garden and home improvement project. Together, let's create beautiful spaces that are not only beautiful but also functional

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