Belgian Block Accents for Defining Your Outdoor Spaces

Belgian block accents beautify these foundation areas by giving distinction to walls, driveways, and garden pathways. Driveways and curbs are not the most glamorous of your household fundamentals, but details matter.

Belgian Block
Harmony Design Group

They provide lovely definition and give these spaces a custom look that can make even these common places more interesting.

Belgian Block: A Short History

Belgian blocks, also called sett, are rectangular or square stone blocks that people have used in roads and walkways for hundreds of years. Romans first used this technique but many adopted it because of the ease in which horses were able to travel along these roads. In fact, many of the roads engineers built with these blocks still exist and are used today.

Belgian Block: A Short HistoryView in gallery
C.E. Pontz Sons

As the name suggests, this stone may have a historical connection to Belgium. When European ships set sail from Belgian port cities like Antwerp, sailors used these large blocks in the ships belly as ballasts for ships that were too light.

Once the traders filled these ships with goods purchased, they left the stones behind in port cities like Boston and New York and people used them for paving roads there. Now, Belgian block is considered a generic term as they have little or no affiliation with Belgium today.

Using Belgian Block Today

Using Belgian block todayView in gallery

Many people use Belgian blocks today for landscaping projects like curbing, borders and walls as well as for street paving, wall caps, and building blocks for pillars. Also, they use them in many driveways either for accents or for paving the whole driveway. These stones have a stunning effect on the most simple projects and add curb appeal.

Size And Shape Of Belgian Block

Size and shape of Belgian blockView in gallery

Belgian blocks are cubical-shaped pieces of solid granite. These blocks range in size and are approximations because they are hand-cut and each is a little different. The smallest size is around 4 x 4 x 4.

There are two larger sizes, regular and jumbo.

  • The regular size is around 5 x 5 x 9 inches.
  • The jumbo size Belgian block is 4 x 7 x 10 inches.

If you need a different size, you can split these stones by using a masonry saw. In order to determine the number of materials you need for your project, there are helpful online Belgian block calculators or charts for you to consult before you begin.

These granite stones range in color. They can be pink, black, yellow, and a combination of gray and white. Some people confuse these blocks with cobblestone. However, they are not the same as cobblestones are deep gray and refer to rounded rocks taken from rivers. Belgian block are quarried, so they have rough edging.

Belgian blocks In Landscaping Projects

You can use these granite blocks to create beauty in your landscape in unique ways. We can’t wait to show you some of our favorite projects that use this versatile stone.

Belgian Block Edging

Belgian block edgingView in gallery
Tuma Lawn Service

For this landscaping project, the installers used Belgian stone to line a pea gravel walkway. The blocks function to give distinction to the walkway and also hold in the small pea gravel.

Belgian Block Driveway

Belgian block drivewayView in gallery
Sallie Hill

The stones on this driveway have a stunning effect. They have installed the stones in half concentric circles. While this driveway uses Belgian stones on the whole area, the length of some driveways may make this prohibitive. You can save on the cost of using stones but also get the benefit by using a combination of asphalt and a Belgian block driveway apron at the beginning.

Belgian block curb

Belgian block curbView in gallery
This Old House

Using Belgian stones for curbing gives this driveway an obvious outline. This is the perfect way to add interest to a driveway without a huge expense. In a practical way, it is a great way to contain landscaping material like mulch.

Belgian wall block

Belgian wall blockView in gallery
Rockland Pavers

Belgian stones make a beautiful wall as they have a varied color palette and regular size. We love the variegated pink and brown of this wall. Also, the levels make an effective landscape display.

Belgian block border

Belgian block borderView in gallery
YouTube

You can use these stones to create an effective and natural-looking border. The installers used the stones in this project to create a natural stairway. The grass in between the layers keeps the look softer than it would be with gravel or pavement.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

How much is a Belgian block driveway?

For a granite stone driveway, expect to pay at least $35 dollars per square foot.

How much do Belgian stones cost?

Expect to pay around $10-$12 per square foot for the stones themselves.

How much does a Belgian block weigh?

There are around 360 stones in one ton.

Can you use Belgian block for a fire pit?

Yes, you can use these blocks for edging and for walls.

Where can I buy Belgian block near me?

These stones are common and you can find them at most large stone yards.

How many Belgian stones are in a pallet?

Depending on the size, stones in a pallet range from 150-500 pieces.

Conclusion

Belgian blocks are a simple but beautiful way to add distinction to an area that might, in other times, go without notice. Thus, they are worth considering as part of your landscaping arsenal. While these projects can be accomplished by amateurs, the detailing accomplishes a look that is professional indeed.