In Phoenix, there are two main types of boulders that can be purchased as accent features for your landscape. Quarry boulders are large rocks that have been mined from a quarry as the name implies. They can range in color from browns and tans to reds and golds. These boulders are massive and can weigh as much as 4,000 pounds or more. Normally these are more rounded in shape and are somewhat smooth in comparison to surface select boulders.
As the name implies, surface select boulders are not from quarries but are found on the earth’s surface. This provides a great deal of texture and character to the outer surface of the stone. The color and weathered look vary depending on where the boulder was found and how long it has been exposed to the elements. In general, the surface select boulders are not as colorful or rounded as the quarry boulders. Surface select boulders can range from 300 pounds to several tons.
Size and Weight
As a general rule, a boulder in Arizona which is roughly 2’ x 2’ x 2’ would be estimated to weigh in at about 900 pounds or .45 tons. A boulder that is 4’ x 4’ x 4’ would be considered rather massive and would have a weight in the range of 6,400 pounds or 3.2 tons. The price of these massive boulders is not more per ton in most cases, but what is very expensive is having these boulders delivered and placed in your yard. Smaller boulders can be placed by hand or with a skid steer, but larger boulders will require the use of a crane and a special gripping sling or attachment.
Natural stone is always a great way to add interest to a water feature. Small boulders can be used to create a very natural looking edge for a pond or waterfall feature. Often times the water is allowed to run over the surface of several boulders to create a gurgling sound much like a stream. At larger ponds or lakes, boulders can double as a seating area to enjoy the view and relax.
Boulders are a very striking statement in a landscape where plants and groundcover rock is very small. Boulders add immediate larger, three-dimensional shapes to a new landscape and will remain in proportion as your plants and trees grow. Many designers like to add boulders to the edge of a soil mount to make it appear as though the soil has eroded away to reveal this natural piece of stone. The color, size, and shape of boulders are what gives them their appeal. Homeowners can often visit a rock yard and tag the boulders that they find visually appealing.
Contact Cyclone Rock to learn more about the varieties of boulders that they offer and how you can create a completely new look in your yard just by adding these massive features.