If you are laying a patio or pathway in your garden, you can choose between two main types of paving slab – natural stone or porcelain. Lumberjacks can supply both natural stone and porcelain paving in Woodbridge, Ipswich and across Suffolk; here we explain their different characteristics, and which one could be the right one for you.

Porcelain paving Woodbridge from Lumberjacks

Porcelain Paving

These slabs, examples of which are pictured above, are made by mixing together clay, sand and other minerals such as kaolin and feldspar with water and baking them in a high-temperature kiln. Once fired, they are ground and polished, ensuring that the slabs are of a consistent size and colour.

This process typically gives the slabs a number of properties:

  • They are completely non-porous, so shouldn’t be damaged by the elements – which is important given the amount of rain the UK has had in the last six months;
  • They should retain their original colour;
  • They are highly scratch-resistant;
  • They are extremely hard-wearing;
  • They can have a non-slip finish.

Our external porcelain paving range can be found here.

Natural stone paving from Lumberjacks

Natural Stone Paving

This type of paving slab, pictured above – which can include granite, marble, limestone, sandstone and slate – isn’t actually manufactured but, as the name Implies, occurs naturally and can be mined from quarries across the world.

These types of stones were formed during what is known as the rock cycle. Over millions of years, a combination of heat and intense pressure generated from the earth’s core essentially created blocks of these stones which, once they have been excavated, still need to be cut to shape using hi-tech equipment. At Lumberjacks, we can supply a variety of natural stone paving to customers across Suffolk.

 

Which One Do You Want For Your Garden?

Picking between natural stone and porcelain paving is very much a personal choice – both will make for stylish additions to your garden, wherever you put them or whatever you use them for (and that includes paths as well as patios).

If you don’t have much time to spare for your garden, then porcelain slabs may be the better bet – they require very little ongoing maintenance and will continue to look good for many years. Porcelain paving slabs may also be a good choice if you plan on using your patio as an outdoor dining area – they offer plenty of grip even after any liquid spillages, and frost won’t be a problem because they are non-porous.

However, if you prefer your garden to have a more ‘rural’ look, then natural stone paving is the better choice. Many gardeners like the fact the slabs can change colour with the seasons, and any imperfections they have are a virtue rather than a disadvantage. (However, it’s worth noting that some porcelain slabs do have a ‘natural look’ finish, such as our Avantgarde range, which is inspired by Kandla sandstone).

And because the manufacturing process is simpler, and the slabs are often locally sourced, natural stone is also the ‘green’ choice as well.

Although moisture can build up on their surfaces (leading to various associated problems with mud, grease and leaves), it’s a simple enough job to apply some sealant or cleaner – we stock the Azpects – Easy Joint range of accessories.  

 

Natural Stone and Porcelain Paving Slabs in Woodbridge from Lumberjacks

If you aren’t sure whether you would prefer natural stone or porcelain paving, call us on 01473 461394 and we will be happy to give you some advice. If you will be using them as part of a new patio, don’t forget our ‘How To’ guide which can be found here – it’s a step-by-step guide which should come in handy.