Our new video compares quarry rock sizes and types so that you can see what our products look like side by side. The video also explains some basic ways these products are used. We’ve summarized the most important info in this article.
Common Quarried Rock Products and Sizes
Our quarry rock can be separated into two categories: minus rock products, clean rock products, and large landscape rock, also known as rockery rock.
Minus rock products contain fines, which are small particles that give the product a “dirty” look. The fines help the product compact. In order from smallest to largest, our most common minus products are ¼” minus, 5/8” minus, 1¼” minus, and 2” minus. We also carry larger minus sizes.
Clean rock products contain no fines, which gives them a “clean” look. In order from smallest to largest, our most common clean rock products are ¾” clean, 1¼” clean, 2” clean, 2″–4” quarry spalls, and 4”–8” quarry spalls.
Large landscape rock, also known as placement rock or rockery rock, is used for projects like rock walls and rockeries.
Here are our landscape rock sizes, in order from smallest to largest.
|Landscape Rock Size||Diameter||Weight|
|Half Man||6–12 in.||25–50 lbs|
|One Man||12–18 in.||50–200 lbs|
|Two Man||18–28 in.||200–700 lbs|
|Three Man||28–36 in.||700–2,000 lbs|
|Four Man||36–48 in.||2,000–4,000 lbs|
|Five Man||48–54 in.||4,000–6,000 lbs|
|Six Man||54–60 in.||6,000–8,000 lbs|
We’ve produced even larger rocks, including 12-ton rocks for a shoreline protection project.
What’s in a Size? All About Gradation
When we use the word “size” for crushed rock products, what we really mean is gradation.
Each product is composed of a variety of rocks that fit through certain screen sizes. This is what is meant by gradation.
Our gradations are based on the needs of the local construction industry, and the industry has to follow the guidelines dictated by agencies like the Department of Transportation. You can read more about specifications in our article, “The Science of Creating Rock Recipes: How We Crush Rock.”
You might find that your local landscaping supply company sells different sizes than we do. Generally, a 5/8” minus is not hugely different than ½” or ¾” minus, and 1¼” clean is not too different from 1½” clean (remember, it’s all about gradation). So as long as your project requirements aren’t strict, you have some flexibility.
What Size and Type of Rock is Right for Your Project?
The size and type of rock depends, of course, on the application.
In general, minus rock products make good bases for applications like concrete pavement and roads.
Our most popular driveway gravels are 5/8″ minus and 1¼” minus. These are usually the best choices for people who are refreshing existing driveways.
Try 1¼” minus if you have heavy traffic or large vehicles. Use 5/8″ minus for smaller vehicles and less traffic.
Our smallest minus rock product, ¼” minus, is usually too fine to use on driveways. Its nickname, “trail mix,” comes from the fact that it’s a popular hiking trail medium. It packs down extremely well and can become almost cement-like.
Clean rock products are good for projects that need filtration or drainage because they’re better at allowing water to pass through.
Clean rock products also make a stunning addition to gardens. They can be used in place of beauty bark or in place of drain rock under downspouts. Homeowners like using clean gravel for garden pathways as well.
Minus and clean rock products can also be used together. For example, if you need to build a road in a really muddy area, you would first lay down a larger clean rock, like quarry spalls, to provide a solid foundation before topping it with a minus rock, which will provide a stable surface for your vehicle.
In terms of size, larger sizes should be at the bottom of a layer while smaller sizes should be on top.
Finally, large landscape rock can be used in everything from rock walls and rockeries to gabions and waterfalls.
With large landscape rock, it’s important to have a plan and the right equipment for your project. You don’t want to damage your driveway or get stuck with rocks that you can’t move.