Thanks to some really epic summer-like weather recently, I’ve been working on the landscape in the garden and yard areas.
Since I removed all my flowerbeds out of the backyard, that area is so easy to keep up! But my front yard is quite another thing…
Most of the area by the front door is surrounded in flower beds… which makes for very pretty focal points! But it does require more effort for sure.
One front yard garden feature you may remember from the past was this little wooden walkway that leads from my driveway into my front yard.
This garden path lasted for a GOOD long time, despite me not protecting the wood with anything!
But once the wood eventually broke down, I threw a few cement walking stones in its place until I could come up with some other unique garden pathway once again.
And of course, over time, things got messy…
The current situation!
Welcome to reality. LOL
The spring flowers happily pushed their way up in between the concrete stepping stones any which way they could. And weeds competed for space.
But rather than JUST weed, I decided this was an epic reason to create a NEW reclaimed wood garden pathway with a unique twist… this time it would be garden-themed!
So it was time to play… bringing out some reclaimed wood planks from my very substantial stash, I dry-fit boards over top of the mess until I came up with an idea I love even more than the last garden walkway!
My goodness… the new walkway design is SO easy to make and is much better protected from the elements too thanks to the unique way the top planks are placed! This new look made quite an impact for the front garden that was not only beautiful, but so useful too!
Desire a new, beautiful garden path that’s easy to make in a quick afternoon with any reclaimed wood you may have? Here’s how!
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DIY a beautiful and easy reclaimed wood garden path that won’t rot!
Supplies I used:
2 long treated support boards cut to fit – mine measured 2″ x 4″ cut at 6′ long
Stencils from Funky Junk’s Old Sign Stencils:
- Locally Grown Herbs
- Garden Shop
- Wild Flower Seeds
- Shipping Crate Stamps
- Welcome to my Garden (for Tours Until Dusk)
Cordless drill and screws
Preparing the area
1. Clean out the area you wish to place your garden walkway, then lower the depth of the sod.
The soil was scooped out to lower the level of the pathway, so once the wood was in position, the garden path would be level with the attached driveway and lawn.
This also makes for easier lawn mower positioning.
Dry-fitting the reclaimed wood boards
2. Dry-fit two long support boards along with the top wood planks to design what you want.
This part of designing your walkway is a little like playing with blocks. Simply place the support boards into position, then decide if you’d like your pathway to have straight lines or curves.
Two support boards – 2″ x 4″ cut at 6′ long
Cedar fence planks for top – cut to 6 deep” x 20″ long
How to curve the garden path:
Since my own path was to be slightly curved, this took a little fiddling to get it right…
- Position support boards on a slight angle and wide apart.
- Lay walkway boards on top, having them touch on the inner sides, and slightly spaced out on the outer sides to create a gentle curve.
- Double check that the support boards don’t show, while still offering maximum support, so the walkway doesn’t tip if you step on a plank edge.
Painting the support planks
3. Cut support boards to fit, then paint or weather-treat if desired.
I used reclaimed treated fence posts, and set them direct on the soil.
You could also place landscape fabric underneath if desired. I find the path easy to tip to weed as-is.
I ended up painting the tops in Fusion’s Ash so they’d visually disappear once the top planks were in position. It looked way better!
Weather protection ideas:
- use treated wood
- garden fabric
- treat the boards first
Designing the wood planks:
4. Design / decorate the top planks as desired.
I ended up painting random top planks in Fusion’s Ash.
Stenciling the planks with garden stencils
Then garden inspiration hit, so some planks were stenciled with some garden stencil designs as if the pathway was made from garden crates! Fun!
The designs were stenciled in Fusion’s Ash.
At the time, I chose not to topcoat to further protect the stenciled designs, but I would suggest to do so as future pressure washing removed most of the lettering on these.
How to stencil
- Position stencil into place with masking tape.
- Load stencil brush with paint, then remove most paint onto a rag to create a dry-to-the-touch stencil brush.
- Tap paint through the stencil to achieve the desired effect.
Learn more about how to stencil from THIS POST.
View a short video near the bottom of this post so you can see how the pathway was stenciled and built.
Attaching the stenciled planks
5. Position the stepping planks on top of support boards where desired, then attach with screws from the top, using outdoor deck screws.
Because the walkway was curved, the right side of the boards touch while the left side of the boards are slightly spaced.
And as you can see here, the black support boards practically disappear! All you see is a pretty walkway along the mulch path. Perfect!
So are you even ready to see how cute this turned out?!
The finished garden path!
How fun, right?! This garden-themed reclaimed wood walkway is rustic, easy to make, totally customizable and it works awesome! I love all the textures the rustic wood gives with the different plank treatments!
And it’s built to last for an outdoor space, thanks to the top planks sitting on top of support planks! I found this design to last much longer than the previous designs.
Where to find garden stencils
I personally love theming the wooden pathway with garden stencils, however you could design your timber walkway any way you wish!
Stencil design tips:
No need to worry if the entire stencil doesn’t fit on a step plank. A trick I use is to simply use bits and pieces of the stencils to achieve the perfect fit, which ultimately further customizes your projects anyway!
Try different stencil positions. Moving 10 LB off to the side made this look like more of a random stamped crate. Just what I wanted anyway!
Locally Grown Herbs was teamed up with part of Shipping Crate Stamps for a random crate stamped look.
I like to angle some stencil images and even run off the edges of projects when attempting a random stamped look.
Easy to customize for any garden space size
Aside from looking totally adorable, I think the best thing about this garden-themed reclaimed wood walkway is the fact that you can so easily customize the size desired to suit either large or small gardens.
I just love how charming this easy DIY project turned out, and really adds a touch of rustic appeal to the garden, don’t you think?
As for how it fits in with the rest of my front yard?
Nestled amongst all the shrubs, ferns, ground covers, flowers and other greenery, I’d say beautifully!
It also provides a great focal point from the bench to truly enjoy it!
Click above to watch a short video to share some of the walkway steps!
Other garden pathways made of brick, pavers, natural stone or gravel paths, wood chips, mosaics, sand or other loose materials are all great ideas too.
However if you’d like a DIY project that’s something a little different that’s also super cost effective, I personally think this reclaimed wood garden pathway is one to make! It’s my personal favorite one to date.
Think you’ll give this idea a go?
DIY a beautiful and easy reclaimed wood garden path that won't rot!
- Clean out and level the area you wish to place your garden walkway.
- Position two long treated posts or planks (for left and right sides) along entire length of your walkway. Paint in black so they disappear. (option: place landscape fabric underneath to keep the weeds down if desired)
- Cut smaller walking planks to the width of path desired and assemble to support boards with screws from the top. Stagger the colors of the boards if they differ.
- Paint the boards where desired.
- Stencil images on the boards in random places.
- Treat the tops of the boards with a weather protectant in a non-slip variety if desired. I didn't treat mine with anything.
Other beautiful garden path ideas to make
from reclaimed wood:
Other garden project hits:
Visit many other garden-themed projects HERE
Check out all other stencil projects HERE
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