About the Landscape Juice Network

Founded in 2008. The Landscape Juice Network (LJN) is the largest and fastest growing professional landscaping and horticultural association in the United Kingdom.

LJN's professional business forum is unrivalled and open to anyone within within the UK landscape industry

LJN's Business Objectives Group (BOG) is for any Pro serious about building their business.

For the researching visitor there's a wealth of landscaping ideas, garden design ideas, lawn advice tips and advice about garden maintenance.

Hi folks,

I am just writing as I have always laid most natural stone on a full mortar bed with sharp sand 5:1 mix and painted the back of the slabs with a slurry.  This is how I was trained to install slabs and also taught this at university with building sand being a big no no.

Recently we have had some issues with builders laying slabs on one of our schemes using the '5 spot' method and clearly causing all sorts of problems.

I have just been on some of the stone suppliers we use (Pavestone, Marshalls, Stonemarket and Bradstone) and all but Bradstone reccommend a 5:1 mix using building sand!! Why on earth are they reccommending building sand to install their pavers, it is way too soft and causes all sorts of structural problems?!

Look forward to hearing anyones thoughts!


You need to be a member of Landscape Juice Network to add comments!

Join Landscape Juice Network

Email me when people reply –


  • i have always used sharp sand mix wether dry or wet but never painted the back of the slabs i have layed a few large york stone flags over the years appart from one that 5 of us could not lift all on dry mix and you want it right first time and do not want to go back to them later  

  • Sharp sand for me too, much nicer to work with as well, I never get a nice mix with builders sand in a mixer .

  • PRO

    Almost universally sharp sand here in Scotland. Although some landscapers are bedding in morter nowadays.

  • PRO

    Interesting thread , as we have just started a major project east side of Scotland and one part of the excavations was lifting a large patio area which was only laid three years ago , using Marshalls Green Slate Paving(incidentally installed by a company on the Marshalls Register)

    Thought it would be a nightmare to lift, totally solid etc but propped the slabs up easily using minimal effort with a shovel. 

    Disgustingly enough and even though my client paid top money at the time, the company also laid the paving dot and dab 5 spots - disgusted to say the least.

    Cannot really resonate with Graeme as most good installers I know in the Edinburgh area using building sand for their mortar mixes as do we. 3:1 Building Sand & Cement - slabs laid on a full bed. Ditto with our walling etc 

    Concrete Sand primarily for monoblocking, slab bases for garden sheds etc 

  • We have laid paving for 40+ years and used 50/50 building/sharp sand mixed at 5/1 as a full mortar bed on a 100mm concrete base for driveways and 75mm for lighter useage. '5 dots' method is definately a no no in my book.

This reply was deleted.

Industry Jobs

Head Gardener for Private Estate

The role of the head gardener is the overall maintenance of the gardens, lawns and grounds. When the opportunity arises, parts of the gardens might be redesigned and replanted. The gardens form an essential and much loved part of a private estate. Main Responsibilities: Full management of 2 part-time assistants, including day-to-day supervision and working

Self Employed Gardeners

Grasstex are currently seeking to engage the services of local (West Sussex / South Surrey) gardeners. If you are a new start up looking for more work, or an existing business with the odd spare day to fill, we may have something for you. We have various types of work available to match your skills.


Gardener required I run an established garden maintenance and soft landscaping business based in North London. I have a record of working in the industry and now work with fellow colleagues on domestic gardens. I’ve spent many years studying and training at Capel Manor. I’m looking to grow my business by taking on additional help

female landscaper/project manager – physic garden

Physic Garden – Project Manager / Landscaper Dec 19 – April 20 – part time – project based Freelance fee £8,000 Location – Nelson Lancashire Expressions of interest should include a letter, outline of relevant experience/CV and reference contact details by email to info@idlewomen.org by 20 Dec 2019   Idle Women the arts and social

Trade green waste centres

LJN Sponsor


PRO Supplier

The aptly named Storm Dennis certainly didn’t prevent the annual Dennis and SISIS groundcare seminar from going ahead, and by all accounts it once again inspired, educated and offered real solutions. 

Hosted at the Durham County Cricket…

Read more…