For Smaller Rocks, Use the Gold Digger Method

Clusters of smaller rocks are commonly used to create a more earthy, clean, organized, and aesthetically pleasing landscape for your place of residence. But it won’t last forever unless you take the time to clean your rocks. Rock cleaning may seem like a hassle, but It only needs to be done annually or bi-annually based on your preference and living environment. There are a few ways to clean your rocks. One way is using the Gold Digger method. During the gold rush, gold diggers would shovel dirt into a box, pour water into it and gently shake back and forth; as the dirt and grime washed away, the barriers would catch the solid flakes of gold. This same method is used but with a more modern twist to it. Only four tools are needed to begin the rock cleaning process, and these tools are:

  1. Hardware cloth: Hardware cloth is a woven mesh made by interlacing wire to form a metal fabric. The interlacing helps separate rocks from dirt and mulch.
  2. Shovel: A flathead shovel. As opposed to a regular shovel whose primary use is digging. Flathead shovels are sturdier and are used for shaping, clearing, and moving dirt and rocks. 
  3. Bucket: Use a bucket to place the filtered-out rocks. When choosing a bucket, we suggest using a plastic pale 5-gallon bucket with a wire handle; this makes transporting rocks easier. You can find these buckets at home depot or your nearest retail store. Make sure you don’t fill it too full because the bucket can get heavy quickly. 
  4. Tarp: Tarps are meant to make the cleaning process easier. Place the tarp under the hardware cloth to capture all the dirt falling between the cracks. Once the dirt is collected, fold the tarp in a bowl shape and place the dirt into the dumpster.

Those four items are all you need with the gold digger method. 

If keeping your landscape rocks in check regularly is important to you, consider using a leaf blower. Leaf blowers effectively blow away a build-up of surface layer dust and dirt on rocks. 

Stained rocks may need more steps but start by using the Gold Digger Method. Next, use a wire scrub brush. Specifically, a wire scrub brush is more important than any old household brush. The wire scrub brush is more effective in removing impurities like algae and moss from rocks and boulders because its wire frame is sturdy, compact, and hard.

Make sure to use a few drops of dish soap while scrubbing oily stains when brushing. If dish soap isn’t doing the trick, try using a vinegar solution. Vinegar can help break down mold and fungus. Simply apply white vinegar to the surface of the rocks, wait a few minutes, and begin scrubbing the surface for a few minutes while wearing gloves. After scrubbing, rinse the solution with a hose or pressure washer, and it should look good as new. 

How to Clean Landscape Boulders

Large boulders can be more challenging to clean because of their size and weight. We can’t use the gold digger method due to their weight, but we can use more straightforward approaches. To start, you’ll want access to 3 tools:

  1.  Broom: to dust off the first layer of dust and grime. 
  2. Garden hose: If you don’t have access to a garden hose, try investing in a power washing hose, you can find some reasonably priced electric ones online that are portable and easy to use. Electric pressure washers are more effective because they pack more of a punch with higher pressure gauges than your average garden hose, making it easier and quicker to get the job done. 
  3. Scrub Brush: Algae and moss start to grow on rocks that haven’t been maintained. When algae and moss start growing on rocks, they slowly start to weaken and create cracks in them. Eventually, over time they can disintegrate. Maintaining your rocks is important so algae and moss growth can be avoided. When your boulders have tough algae and moss, use a scrub brush and apply white vinegar solution. Vinegar is effective in breaking down moss and algae faster. After scrubbing, use the power washer again to re-rinse the boulders returning them to their shining natural state. 

Just like smaller rocks, you’ll only need to wash the boulder annually or bi-annually to keep them well maintained. Washing your boulders is important in ensuring your yard looks more alive and welcoming, especially when they are used as stepping stones leading toward your home. 

If you’re interested in purchasing landscape rocks or want more of our high-quality rocks, soil, boulders, dirt, etc., check out our website offers. We deliver where, when, and how much material you want directly to your doorstep. Contact us today to discover what’s right for you!

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