How to Incorporate Recycled Materials in Your NJ Landscape

How green is your landscape? No, we’re not talking about how vibrant your grassy lawn appears here. Instead, we’re referring to how eco-friendly your property actually is.

Whether your existing landscape isn’t very environmentally contentious or you’d simply like to improve upon its “green-ness”, it’s not difficult to do your part to protect the environment through responsible landscaping and hardscaping.

All you need is the right attitude and a working knowledge of the recycled landscaping materials available to you in NJ. Read on to get more information on how to find, choose and use recycled materials for your NJ property.

Why Recycle?

As we write up this post on recycled materials, we’re assuming that the reader actually has a desire to go this route. We understand, though, that there are some readers who may still be on the fence about choosing recycled materials for landscaping.

After all, landscaping and construction projects require a great deal of strength, durability and reliability, and you want to make sure that your materials truly stack up. We’re here to tell you that recycled products are of the same quality and strength as virgin materials and will last just as long.

This means that you get to build up a beautiful and reliable landscape or hardscape and feel good doing it! And you should feel good about it. We all know that recycling is a nice thing to do, but have you ever really stopped to think about why?

When you work with recycled landscaping materials, for example, the earth benefits from it in a number of ways. For starters, we don’t have to cause harm or disruption to the earth by searching for and excavating as many raw resources.

We’re also consuming fewer resources, offering further protection to the environment and future generations. Next, fewer processes are used in the production of recycled materials which means that the amount of harmful emissions going into the atmosphere is significantly decreased.

Recycled materials also weigh less than virgin materials, requiring less fuel consumption when these products are shipped from one location to another. Finally, because less material is wasted and more is reused, the recycling process means that our landfills don’t become crowded with waste products that won’t break down or decompose over time.

As though the environmental benefits weren’t enough, let’s focus on the numbers. No one wants to spend an arm and a leg on a construction or landscaping project, and those who work with recycled materials don’t have to.

Because fewer raw resources are consumed and because less labor and processing is required, you can expect recycled landscaping materials to be much less expensive than their virgin counterparts. Let’s recap:

Recycled landscaping materials help to protect the environment, are much less expensive than other materials and are of the same quality and reliability as virgin materials. The real question here is, why aren’t you already going the recycled materials route?

Bringing Recycled Materials to Your NJ Landscape

Now that you’re sold on the idea of working with recycled landscaping and construction products, it’s time to discuss how these elements can actually be worked into your landscape.

The great news is that recycled materials are extremely versatile, so if you’ve got an idea for a project, chances are that you’ll be able to work recycled materials into it.

In order to get your creative juices flowing, we’ve assembled a list of some of the most common ways that recycled products are used throughout NJ and its surrounding areas:

Asphalt Driveway

Skilled asphalt recycling plants are able to take broke up bits of asphalt that have been cleared away from areas that have been dug up or excavate and make use of it all over again. Here, a certain percentage of recycled asphalt is used in the production of “new” hot mix asphalt (HMA).

This means that you get to enjoy the sleek, upscale look of asphalt and enjoy the strength that it offers to your driveway or parking lot while also knowing that a significantly less amount of natural, raw resources went into its production.

It will be more affordable and more environmentally responsible, but you won’t be able to tell the difference by looking at the surface itself.

Crushed Asphalt Driveways and Paths

The recycled asphalt that isn’t reintroduced back into HMA is broken down into an aggregate size. The aggregate prices are unique in that they feature a one-of-a-kind blackish gray coloration and original texturing.

Because of its appearance, many people will choose to surface their loose-fill driveways with recycled asphalt over crushed stone or other similar materials. The fact that there is some tar present in the asphalt makes it easy for the pieces to compact and adhere to one another, which creates an almost semi-permanent surface.

In addition to being used on residential driveways, crushed asphalt has also been used on recreational paths and trails where biking and walking are common.

Crushed Concrete Driveway

Gravel driveways are extremely popular throughout northern NJ and its neighboring regions. Gravel is attractive, versatile, easy to work with and it’s affordable.

By using recycled crushed concrete, you can maximize your savings even further without sacrificing on quality or beauty. Considering using this tough yet visually appealing material to surface your driveway. It will allow for excellent drainage and will require very little maintenance over time.

Crushed Concrete Water Features

Recycled crushed concrete aggregate can work beautifully in and around water features. The flowing water will gently wash over the visually interesting colors and textures of the crushed material.

Over time, it may eventually smooth out the concrete, creating a completely new look and experience for you to enjoy. Crushed concrete might also be incorporated into dry river beds which offer an attractive means of diverting rainwater away from the property during periods of inclement weather.

Base Materials

Crushed concrete is frequently selected as a base material for an array of construction and landscaping projects. Major contractors often enjoy the strength and durability of crushed concrete when building the foundation for a new building or structure.

Cities and counties like knowing that their roads and parking lots are firmly in place and are structurally secure when crushed concrete is used as a base or subbase material. Homeowners also enjoy working with crushed concrete to create a reliable base for driveways and patios.

Buying Recycled Materials in NJ

If you’re excited about bringing recycled materials to your NJ landscape, be sure to visit Braen Stone. We own and operate local asphalt and concrete recycling facilities where we take pride in breathing new life into materials that would otherwise have ended up in a landfill.

We work hard to ensure that all of our recycled materials are carefully screened and processed to ensure the highest degree of quality. Our products are also approved for use by the NJDOT and other leading authorities.

Talk with one of our experts today about how recycled materials could be used to improve your landscape. Our recycled products are available at wholesale prices and can be picked up or bulk delivered to areas throughout parts of NJ, NY, NYC and PA.


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By | 2016-09-01T12:44:13+00:00 September 1st, 2016|Blog, Construction Materials, RCA|0 Comments

About the Author:

Dirk is a Project Manager at Braen Stone. He's an expert on a variety of construction materials and prides himself on helping the company meet the needs of companies large and small.