Which Type Of Dirt Do You Need For Your Landscaping Project?

Planning a landscaping project? If you’re new to landscaping design, it can be daunting and overwhelming knowing exactly which materials to choose. There’s so much to choose from! But hang in there—you’re going to love your new landscape design, and you’ll be proud when it’s done. 

No matter what your project plan is, you’re going to need high-quality landscaping supplies to get the job done right. If you’re on the hunt for landscaping dirt, you likely already have a good idea of what your landscaping project will entail. However, it’s important to note that different landscaping projects need different materials, and choosing the right dirt for your project can make the difference between a beautiful landscape or a flood zone. 

Circle M supplies several different types of dirt and topsoil, and we always recommend them for specific projects. Should you use topsoil for your garden bed? Should you use Turf Builder or Premium topsoil for your lawn? 

In this article, we’ll cover all of the common questions we get about our different types of dirt, as well as what projects we recommend using them for.

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What is Fill Dirt, exactly? Fill Dirt is a general term for dirt and soil that may contain sand, rocks, stones, and earth. Our Economy Topsoil is considered a fill dirt and contains rocks 5/8in and smaller in it. We also have 3in Minus Structural Fill, which contains small graded rock 3in and smaller. 

When To Use Fill Dirt

Fill Dirt is usually used to change the elevation of a property, or backfill structures. While many people use Fill Dirt for larger construction projects, such as providing a sturdy base, Fill Dirt can have great uses in landscape projects as well. Some ideal projects for Fill Dirt are: securing the ground around retaining walls, elevating planting beds, building up the ground around foundations to fix water drainage problems, and leveling off land.


premium topsoil for lawns

Topsoil is the rich and dark soil that sits at the top (literally top-soil). The main difference between our Economy Topsoil and our Premium Topsoil is that our premium topsoil is screened. Our Premium Topsoil is great for lawns & shrub beds, and isn’t typically used for gardens or flower beds. If you need soil for your raised garden bed, we recommend our 3-way garden mix or our certified organic. 


bedding sand

We all love to feel warm sand beneath our toes…and it turns out sand is also great for creating gorgeous and dynamic landscapes. While sand is technically very small rock and mineral particles, it can also be considered textural soil, made up almost completely of sand-sized particles. Since sand particles are much larger than soil, water tends to pass much more quickly through sand, and therefore it’s not as stable as other soils.

Landscaping With Coarse Sand

coarse sand
Coarse sand is an ideal material for projects that require optimal drainage. Coarse sand can be used to create unique walkways, for patio pavers, flagstone or in retaining wall projects.

Landscaping With Bedding Sand

Bedding sand is softer because it’s created by washing out fines. You can use bedding sand to create children’s play areas, stabilize pavers, or mix it with gravel for backfill projects.


gravel for driveway

We’re all familiar with gravel, but it’s important to note that there are different types of gravel, and they’re not all the kind that you put in your driveway. 

Different Types Of Gravel

Pea gravel, while it can technically be used for driveways, is more ideal for decorative landscaping, such as pathways, gardens, ponds, water features, planters, and patios. 

Basalt Minus

Our Basalt Minus ⅝ inch, and our Basalt Minus 1 ¼ inch are both great for driveways, because they pack nicely. 

Landscaping With Gravel

Gravel is actually a very versatile material, and can be used in a variety of landscaping projects. 

You can use gravel for a modern and low-cost garden makeover in just a few hours. Because gravel creates such great contrast, it’s great for a variety of designs, including water features, ponds, filling gaps between stone slabs, beneath trees, next to grass or planted areas, edging, rock gardens, and more. You can also use gravel for backfill projects, as it has excellent drainage qualities.

Ready To Start Landscaping?

When planning your landscape design, choosing the right dirt is one of the most important factors.

If you need landscaping rock for a driveway or walkway, reach out to Circle M Landscape, and we’ll help you to make the right choice.

Still have questions? Feel free to give us a call. We’ve been serving Spokane for decades, and we’re always ready to help you create the perfect landscape.