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What is Alabama Sunset Stone?

Updated: Oct 19, 2023

Alabama Sunset is a quartzite gravel straight from Alabama. These stones are naturally rounded and have a polished look when wet. They look beautiful as a substitute for mulch and also in fountains or any place where they will get wet. When wet, this landscape stone looks polished which therefore makes it widely used around swimming pools, ponds, fountains and other types of water features. This rock is made up of neutral colors: pinks, oranges, blues, grays, and browns… similar to a sunset!

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What is it used for?

Alabama Sunset Stone is used for many different things. It's a great choice landscaping and plant beds particularly thanks to its resistance to wind and rain. It can be used for:

  • Plant beds

  • Landscaping around trees

  • Landscaping around water features, like pools, and fountains, thanks to its brilliant colors when it gets wet.

  • Driveways

  • Walkways

Benefits of Alabama Sunset Stone

There are multiple benefits to using Alabama Sunset Stone on your property. First, it is extremely easy to maintain. The material is extremely resistant to weathering and can withstand many years of rain and wind without disintegrating or losing their beautiful colors. It also has great drainage properties and is permeable. This material also comes in a variety of colors, but many prefer it for its more standard, pinks, oranges, blues, grays, and browns. These stones are at their best when used in water features. The stones have an amazing property where they seem to gain a very fine polish when they are coated in water. Intentional water features like fountains and pools are perfect for a consistent sheen and vibrant color. In the same way, those that live in a rainier climate can reap the same benefits on a semi-regular basis, using the material as walkways, driveways, and plant beds. In addition, many love the material for its use in plant beds. Unlike mulch, Alabama Sunset Stone does not decompose, and most importantly does not attract ants or termites.


Like anything, there are a couple of disadvantages to using this product. It is a bad idea to have this in places you may be walking barefoot often, as the large particles can cause great discomfort. Those stones are great for use around pools, but be sure there are walkable pathways for bathers without shoes. In addition, it is prudent to avoid having these materials lined with lawns. Such large particles often get naturally knocked from the plant bed and onto the lawn. When it comes time to mow the lawn, particles like that could easily ruin the mower's blades over time, or worse, pose a hazard of launching those particles at high speeds, creating dangerous projectiles. Of course, this is not a guarantee, and many people have their lawns lined with this stone. With minimal caution, someone can mow lawns with these rocks in it no problem.

Used by NASA

A massive pair of machines called crawler-transporters have carried integrated rockets and spacecraft to Pads 39A and 39B for more than 50 years at Kennedy. Their initial design called for asphalt roads, but engineers quickly encountered issues. Asphalt couldn’t handle the weight of the 6.65-million-pound crawler on its own, much less with the weight of a rocket added to it. The asphalt also proved too sticky and therefore would not allow the crawler-transporter to turn properly, causing damage to its roller bearings. One crawler with a rocket can weigh up to 12 million pounds, and so a material that would allow the treads to turn and the weight to be distributed was necessary. Enter Alabama river rocks, a label of which Alabama Sunset stones falls under. River rocks are mostly quartz, round and 3-4 inches in diameter, important features for high weight tolerances. They act as ball bearings that allow the crawler to turn with minimal issues. When the weight of the crawler rolls over the rocks, they absorb energy from compaction, helping to reduce the vibration on the surface that could cause damage to any flight hardware being transported. The immense pressure slowly grinds the rocks into pebbles, so fine they can stop water from passing through them, so every 10 years the rocks are scooped out and replaced, to allow for water drainage and continued operation.

What sizes do you offer?

We offer our Alabama Sunset Stone™ in 1 size.

1/2" Alabama Sunset Stone

1/2” is one of the most popular stone sizes you will find in landscape and construction. This is used for playgrounds, pathways, walkways and more. 1/2" stone is extremely popular for driveways, flowerbeds, and walkways.


To recap, this is a great durable and colorful option for stone material. It is naturally occurring and is at its best when it's wet. It is great for any project large or small. You can be sure that Alabama Sunset Stone is going to last both in size, and in color, and will be a great choice in the end. If you are interested in learning more about Alabama Sunset Stone, contact our experts at DeFeo Materials today!

View our entire collection of Bulk Decorative Gravels & Landscape Rock.

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