Make a stacked paver pedestal for your garden

March 04, 2023

Need an inexpensive yet eye-catching pedestal to show off a container or elevate a piece of garden art? Get some concrete pavers in two different sizes, and stack them in alternating layers to create a contemporary plinth.

I made this one using 12-inch and 18-inch square pavers. I’ve noticed lizards basking on the sun-warmed pavers, partly sheltered by the overhangs. Lizard habitat and a display space? Win-win! My metal lizard has new friends.

Before you stack your pavers, take the time to make a sturdy, level foundation. Excavate about 8 inches, digging a hole a bit wider than your largest paver. Spread several inches of paver base or decomposed granite, and use a tamper to pack it into a solid, level base. Stack a couple of pavers and use a level to check that there’s no lean. If there is, remove the pavers and add more base material and retamp it. Make sure it’s dead level before stacking your pavers to the desired height.

Use concrete adhesive on each layer for added stability, if desired. If you have young kids or grandkids who might be tempted to climb it, keep it low and/or use one size of paver for extra stability.

I’ve seen variations of stacked-paver pedestals in numerous gardens over the years. Here’s one made of round pavers in the late Eleanor Pratt’s garden in Austin. An article in Midwest Living shows a variation on this design using two different sizes of round pavers. And somewhere I have a photo of a spiral plinth made of stacked square pavers, each one set at a slight turn from the one below.

Bigger plinths can be made from stacked concrete blocks with pavers on top, like this orchid display table in Michael McDowell’s garden in Plano.

Here’s another one, for displaying a work of sculpture, at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center a number of years ago.

The humble concrete paver can be put to work for much more than paths and patios. Get creative with them to achieve some elevation in your garden and showcase a piece of art, a birdbath, or a planter.

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