Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13
  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    I have a driveway at my new home, and in some places the top of the driveway is 9 inches or so above the top of the lawn. In most places, it's about 4-5 inches above the lawn.

    I've scraped most of the excess gravel that extended beyond the driveway (and into the lawn), and am now looking to build up that area beside the driveway with soil/dirt (and then seed) so that the driveway appears flush with the lawn.

    I'm wondering what method I should use? Can I dump, spread and then compact topsoil without fear of erosion (after the grass has taken root), or should I line everything with fill dirt up to 1-2 inches from the top of the driveway, and then fill the rest in with topsoil?

    Any advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
    Gary

  2. #2
    Veteran Member jbrumberg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    2,073
    Location
    Western MA
    Tractor
    New Holland TC29DA, John Deere 455D

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    goehm:

    Welcome to TBN ! I finally after many, many years of procrastinating and battling NE mud each mud season had my "driveway" dug up (~150 cubic yards), and resurfaced with geotextile fabric and ~180 cubic yards of ballast rock and topped with "river crusher run". I no longer have a drainage problem ; but like you how do you "match" the driveway to the lawn? Due to my drainage challenges I want to keep my driveway crowned and higher than the "lawn"; so my question to you is how is your drainage? If I decide or let me be honest- if "She Who Must Be Obeyed " decides to level the driveway to the lawn I believe I still need to keep the driveway higher and that I will have to use that perforated flexible 4" plastic tubing covered with a "sock" in a trench lined and covered with stone prior to the dirt/topsoil topping and planting. Jay
    NH TC29DA with 14LA and HD QA 60" bucket, weighted R-1's, FOPS, CCM M-160 (58") Tiller, Tebben MD 60" Rotary Cutter, Woods LR 108 (96") Landscape Rake, FEL cutting edge and tooth bar, Woods GB60 (60") Box Blade, Wallenstein BXM32

    1995 John Deere 455 Diesel with 48" mower, MC 519 Cart with PowerVac

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    1,561
    Location
    Central Lower Michigan
    Tractor
    Kioti DK40SE

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    A driveway??? Really? Never heard of such a thing.

    Before launching in, I would ask if there's a reason why the driveway is above the surround grass - is it low lying, wet soil, any other reason you really need the drainage. It could just be a lazy build of the driveway, but consider drainage before you level everything out. No one wants a driveway of puddles.

  4. #4
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    Thanks for the responses, guys. There isn't a drainage issue - any water that runs off the crown onto either side of the driveway will continue down to the drainage ditches at the base of the driveway. So adding a 2-3 foot 'apron' or leaving it with a dropoff and gravel sided is really only aesthestics.

    The paved driveway sits on (of course) gravel, and on top of that is my base layer, and then top layer - which lets it sit up fairly high. It's just a matter that the builder isn't going to pay to make things look pretty.

    It's a straight shot to the road, on a slight incline (the house is elevated, driveway slopes down to the road). Any water that flows would flow along the driveway, and never over top of it.

    Rather, I'm just wondering how much topsoil can realistically be put down as it packs differently than fill dirt. My concern is that if I put down 9 inches of topsoil, that even if I compress it with a 300lb roller, it might continue to compact.

    I'm contemplating getting 3cu/yard of fill and 10 cu/yard of tospsoil. Given that I have to pay two different delivery fees ($90), I was wondering if I could forgo the fill.

  5. #5
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    Hey jbrumberg,

    I'm not sure what your specific drainage challenge is, but the way I see it is this: if you've got a good crown on your driveway, the water is still going to run off. If you add dirt/soil to each side of your driveway to add a more pleasing grade from driveway edge to lawn, it's still going to have an angle such that the water is going to continue on it's way.

    The question is where does it go from there? As long as you have a place for it to go, and as long as your driveway edging isn't hampering it's progress you should be OK. Assuming you won't be in a situation where you have to now worry about erosion and maintaining your driveway edge, in which case you're now adding more (maintenance) work to keep things looking good.

    Then again, I don't know your exact setup (though I do think I've seen some pictures you've posted? I've read a lot and looked at a lot of pictures, so things may be a bit hazy!).

  6. #6
    Elite Member AlanB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,532
    Location
    Clarksville, TN, USA
    Tractor
    NH 1925

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    Really depends on what you have available, and what "topsoil" and "fill dirt" are considered in your particular area.

    When we bring the grass up to existing driveways if it is less then 4" or so, we just use what I would term topsoil, ie, good growing soil, rich in nutrients.

    If I was filling over 4" then we would use some form of fill dirt (as in not the quality of topsoil, but not what would be commonly called Fill or red dirt in my area) and then dress the last 4" with topsoil.

    We would not compact anything, just utilize the box blade and the bucket, harley rake if available.

    We would expect, and would advise the customer that some settling will occur, and topdressing will need to continue until the desired result is achieved. We would probably leave it a bit proud over the driveway when we left, assuming it would not wash onto the driveway (your situation may no make that practical)

    Probably the best info I can share though, is that dirt sure does not go far when you want it too, and sure is a lot more then you think when you are trying to get rid of it

  7. #7
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    Ha ha - I hear you on the dirt quantities. The good news is that I can slowly spread that over my lawn and for other projects and such.

    The bad news is that I have a few hundred pounds of gravel that I've cleaned up. And THAT seems to be much harder to get rid of. That said, I do live off a public gravel drive that's pretty well potholed. I might be able to dump and spread a lot of that to clean things up a bit. A fairly tedious task given that I've only got a 'bota 2230 ... but it's always good to find excuses to use it, right?

    I can hear the neighbors now, "That guy is really trying to get his money's worth!"

    Thanks for the response.

  8. #8
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    5,672
    Location
    Cedartown, Ga and N. Ga mountains
    Tractor
    1998 Kubota B21, 2005 Kubota L39

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    If it were me I would go with the top soil, which will support a good deep root structure, which will be what eventually holds things in place. Besides that I would find it rather difficult to add and grade 3 or 4” of this and then 3 or 4” of that in any accurate way. Fill it up flush and just run the tractor tire along the edge to compact and minimize settling. Top it off flush and you will have some looser soil to get your grass going. Get the seed down as soon as you can so it can germinate and hold things in place. If you are far enough north where it is not to hot yet, add some rye grass for fast germination and erosion control.

    MarkV

  9. #9
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    16,854
    Location
    First organized permanent settlement in the northwest territory
    Tractor
    2003 Kubota BX1500/2004 Kubota Bx23/2005 Kubota BX1500

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    I like the bottom of the gravel base to be 2 to 4 '' above the surrounding yard to prevent water from running in under the blacktop or concrete pavement and causing freezing and thawing problems.
    Tractors 2003 Kubota BX1500 / 2004 Kubota Bx23 / 2005 Kubota BX1500.
    Attachments 60'' Front Blade/48'' Rear Tiller/FEL/Back Hoe /
    60'' MMM/Clamp on Forks/48'' MMM
    South of Canton Ohio L .B

  10. #10
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    16,854
    Location
    First organized permanent settlement in the northwest territory
    Tractor
    2003 Kubota BX1500/2004 Kubota Bx23/2005 Kubota BX1500

    Default Re: Question - top soil to line a driveway, or fill and topsoil?

    Quote Originally Posted by goehm
    I have a driveway at my new home, and in some places the top of the driveway is 9 inches or so above the top of the lawn. In most places, it's about 4-5 inches above the lawn.

    I've scraped most of the excess gravel that extended beyond the driveway (and into the lawn), and am now looking to build up that area beside the driveway with soil/dirt (and then seed) so that the driveway appears flush with the lawn.

    I'm wondering what method I should use? Can I dump, spread and then compact topsoil without fear of erosion (after the grass has taken root), or should I line everything with fill dirt up to 1-2 inches from the top of the driveway, and then fill the rest in with topsoil?

    Any advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
    Gary
    I would just slope fill dirt out from the edge of the driveway.
    Start about 3/4 to and inch below the surface of the drive.
    Go out far enough away from the drive so that it leaves a long gradual slope that blends in with the surrounding yard and doesn't leave a hump to drive your tractor over when mowing the yard.
    Seed it with grass seed and cover it with hay.
    I use hay cause it cost a lot less than straw and works just as good as straw for me.
    The slop will cause water to flow away from you drive instead of under your driveway which helps avoid freezing and thawing problems.
    I'm in the process of putting in a new drive way but have to move an 8 x 16 building first as it's setting right where the new drive is going through.
    Last edited by LBrown59; 05-13-2007 at 05:45 PM.
    Tractors 2003 Kubota BX1500 / 2004 Kubota Bx23 / 2005 Kubota BX1500.
    Attachments 60'' Front Blade/48'' Rear Tiller/FEL/Back Hoe /
    60'' MMM/Clamp on Forks/48'' MMM
    South of Canton Ohio L .B

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
© 2014 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.