On The Rocks: How Crushed Do You Want It?
Crushed stone suppliers have several means of making large rocks into smaller pebbles. They do this as a service to customers who might not want large "grain" crushed rock in their yards or in their projects. If you want an idea of how big or how small of crushed stone you can get, check out the following sizes available for delivery through your crushed stone merchant.
When you want crushed rock that is almost sand, the company will crush and roll larger rocks until they get the right size and consistency throughout the batch. They might even sift it through a vibrating screened sifter to get any larger bits out and keep the smaller grains together. This very small and very fine crushed rock is typically used to make cement, concrete, or mortar.
The next size up is usually small pea-sized rock. Commonly called "pea gravel" because of its tiny size, most people use this stuff as a playground filler material to stop kids from stepping in mud and help filter water to the soil through the stone. It might also be used in some French drain systems.
As the grains get bigger, you are probably wondering how this could still be called "crushed" stone. Well, in order to get slightly larger sizes of stone, the company still has to crush and break up boulders to create smaller bits. These smaller bits are still larger than pea-sized and almost-sand grains, but because larger rocks were crushed to achieve this size, this size is still considered crushed rock. Usually, the quarter-sized stuff is used as a barrier layer under the concrete and asphalt for roads, sidewalks, and driveways, although it can also be used as landscaping rock.
This is some of the biggest crushed rock you can get. Because every piece is so oddly shaped, it makes a good filter layer for landscaping, allowing water to sift through to the plants and flowers that share the rock bed. Most people are not likely to go larger in terms of crushed stone, although it is possible. Uses for larger grains of crushed rock are very limited, which is why you may be hard-pressed to find it. If you really want bigger crushed rock, you may have to ask for it specially. Be very specific in the size of grains you want so that it is exactly what you want and nothing else.