Does your picnic table reside on your lawn? Do you have to move it every time you mow the lawn? Pretty frustrating – right? Right! A real hassle especially if the table is large! Creating a paving pad to put under your table solves this little challenge and it doesn’t impose a great deal of work or expense either. And it looks fantastic! And you can say with pride that you built it yourself!
Most picnic or BBQ tables are between 5′ and 10′ wide at their widest point. ( Many, these days are hexagonal or octagonal and so a square pad is the most suitable. As long as your table is no bigger than 10′ across, a 10’*10′ pad would be ideal. The first thing to do is locate the position that you want to have your picnic table in. Just remember that to shift it after you put the pad down is going to involve quite a bit of work. You can choose any size of paving stones however a 2’*2′ paver , being so large means you don’t have to put so many down. 25 in fact, 5 each way.
Purchase the 25 2″ pavers, (aggregate pebbles on top looks great) and you will need 4 lengths of 2″*4″ treated lumber at 10′ long as well as 8 4″ galvanized nails and some lumber for pegs.
Lay out the pavers on an unused section of lawn. Leave a small gap between them to allow for sand. Now measure the distance along each side, cut the lumber at 45 degrees and nail the surrounding framework together. It will be a perfect fit. Now shift the lumber framework to the exact location that you want to place your picnic table. Make sure it is square by measuring from corner to corner. Mark around the outside of the frame with a spade. Shift the frame and dig out the lawn area out to a depth of 4″.
Now place the frame into the area dug out. Check for square. You now need to get the whole framework level. Drive pegs into the ground inside the frame and when you have it level, nail the pegs to the frame. The frame should be level with the height of the grass.
Now you require some sand, about 1 3/4 cu yards of sand. This will raise the bottom of the dug out area by about 2″. Level it off with a rake. Now you need to make a board to screen the sand to the correct level, just under 2″. The board needs to sit on the frame and extend down 1 3/4″. Keep working at it until the area is as level as possible. This will determine how level you get the pavers. Without walking on the sand area fit all of the 25 pavers into the sand area. They will fit perfectly with a small gap in between.
You need a little more sand to spread over the top of the pavers. Sweep the sand until all of the gaps are filled. Next it’s time to compact the pavers. This can be done with a board and a hammer. The vibration will settle the pavers into the sand. When this is done it may require a little more sand. Keep consolidating until no more sand disappears. Sweep the area of all the sand and – hey presto, you have a perfect paving pad for your picnic table. No more shifting the table to mow the lawn!