Last Modified: February 7, 2024

Plum Slate Chippings

Vibrant, Versatile Garden Landscaping

Close up of plum slate chipss

By Ben Parrot - Landscape Gardener & Amateur Geologist


Slate landscaping material and construction aggregate

Geological name(s):

Metamorphic rock

Other Name(s):

Purple slate, slate chippings, purple gravel, purple slate chippings, purple shingle, plum grey slate chippings


Have you ever walked down a garden path and noticed the crunch under your feet as a simultaneous shimmering display of purple and grey colour takes hold of your gaze? Those are likely plum slate chippings, a natural product of the most exotic beauty known to landscaping design. Decorative aggregates like plum slate chippings can quickly transform outdoor spaces into eye-catching features that come with many practical, low-maintenance benefits in the garden.

These chippings are unique for their striking colour and texture, making them a popular choice for many outdoor themes. This encyclopaedic resource offers photos and comprehensive details of the specifications, advantages and versatile uses for plum slate chippings. Additionally, you'll find links to essential design principles, inspirational ideas, and do-it-yourself guides for various applications of this unforgettable aggregate.






fall safety





fish friendly

eco friendly



diy friendly






Deep plum, occasional hints of blue or grey



Close up of slate plum. Jpg

Size Range

10-40mm (0.6-1.6 inches)

20mm plum slate, 20mm plum slate chippings, 40mm plum slate chippings

Fall Safety

Unsuitable for play areas





Fish Friendly


Plum slate chippings close up. Jpg









Plum slate garden path


Decorative aggregates like plum slate chippings offer many benefits in landscape design. They are a versatile and durable product that can perform a dazzling and quick renovation to any outdoor space. However, the benefits of using these purple stones for garden landscaping are not limited to their visually striking effect. They also offer practical advantages in horticulture, acting as a weed suppressant that can aid moisture retention and protect the roots of plants and flowers.

Laying plum stone chippings on your beds and borders could be considered a type of low-maintenance mulching but unlike compost, one that simultaneously provides a clean, stunning finish to your garden beds, walls and paths.

  • Inhibits weeds
  • Improves drainage
  • Hard-wearing
  • Eco-friendly, sustainable
  • Low-maintenance
  • Moisture retention
  • Versatile all-rounder
  • pH neutral
  • Quick space upgrade
  • Safe for aquatic life
  • Root protection
  • Easy to lay


Plum slate chippings bring a unique richness in colour that can transform the look of an entire garden, patio or any number of construction projects featuring decorative stone. Their deep plum hues intensify when wet, making them particularly striking in rainy conditions or as content in water features. These products' flat, angular shape creates a stable surface, suitable for paths and driveways, and their colour can complement a wide range of plants and other garden elements. Also, plum slate is resistant to fading and weathering, making it a long-lasting landscaping material.

Plum slate chippings are highly versatile, providing many options for various applications. These purple garden stones are ideal for creating eye-catching focal points and features, defining borders and as a top dressing for pots and planters. In the following section, we list many common purple slate chippings uses, although it is not exhaustive. Wherever there is a hyperlink beside an item, an article from Outdoor Aggregates about the topic is available.

Plum slate chips garden

Inspiration and Informational Articles

DIY-Friendly How-To Guides

Need to work out how many stone chippings your  project needs? Try our free gravel calculator.

Other Applications

Some other excellent applications for plum slate chippings include:

  • Base for terrace, patios or outdoor seating areas
  • Slate aquarium caves
Plum slate chips under leaves in a garden. Jpg

Unsuitable For

The following list represents the kinds of applications that plum slate chips are not suitable for:

  1. 1
    Decorative borders featuring trees or shrubs that may be vulnerable to extreme heat or require a large amount of water.
  2. 2
    Plum slate chips are unsuitable for french drains. 
  3. 3
    Play surfaces
  4. 4
    Areas requiring high foot traction.

Similar Alternatives

The following is a list of decorative aggregates which are alternatives to plum slate. They may offer you a more suitable variation on the primary colour, a more economical option, or a close substitute for cases where the base material may be unsuitable for the project you are creating, e.g. limestone is not fish-friendly, where slate is.









10-40mm (0.4-1.6")

flaky, flat




10-40mm (0.4-1.6")

flaky, flat



20mm (0.8")



pink, grey


6-30mm (0.1-1.2")



pink, grey

10-20mm (0.4-0.8")



Under £80







Slate chips garden sweeping

Plum slate chippings are generally low maintenance, especially when a heavy duty membrane is installed underneath to suppress weeds, with most work limited to the occasional removal of debris. Over time, some chippings may sink into the soil or get displaced; topping up plum slate chipping once every few years can maintain the desired depth and coverage.

Occasional power washing is advisable to maintain the original colour and prevent buildup. Natural quarry materials also may have dust, which should be hosed off with water at the time of installation. For more on how to clean stone chippings, read our article: how to clean garden stones.

Purchasing Tips

Person looking out at a natural slate landscape england. Jpg

When buying plum slate chippings, consider the size of the area you wish to cover to determine the quantity needed. Slate chippings come available in a range of sizes from mini mulch, ranging from 2-14mm, 20mm, 40mm, 60mm and larger diameter. Also, consider the size you'll need; for instance, 40mm plum slate chippings are typically used for driveways, while smaller 10-20mm plum slate chippings are better suited to footpaths. Note that the colour and texture of natural stone can vary, so where available, it is cost-effective to request a sample to assess the stone's colour and quality against your design requirements.

Using our gravel calculator to get an unbiased estimate for your project needs is one of the best and easiest ways to get the right amount without the risk of shortfalls or over-spending - all you need is a few measurements of the space. Buying in bulk bags is often more cost-effective for larger projects. Always check the delivery information, bulk bag availability and any additional charges.


What is purple shingle?

Purple shingle typically refers to a type of decorative purple gravel or crushed stone that is predominantly purple. It is commonly used in landscaping and outdoor design projects to add visual interest and texture to gardens, pathways, driveways, and other outdoor areas.

Purple shingle is slate rock crushed into small pieces, and its colour can vary from deep purple to more subdued shades of lavender and mauve.

Why are my slate chippings turning white?

Rain and groundwater draw salts from the soil to the surface of the slate chips, which, when the moisture evaporates, leaves behind a white haze. This process is natural and does not damage the stone.

Do weeds grow through slate chippings?

Weeds may still grow through slate chippings, so it is best to use a weed-proof membrane as a base layer before adding the chippings to prevent any growth.

What are the common uses of plum slate chippings in landscaping?

Plum slate chips are commonly used for garden paths, rockeries, water feature edging, mulch, ground cover and filling gaps in patios. With their vibrant hue and natural texture, plum slate chippings have become popular among people seeking to add a touch of elegance and sophistication to their outdoor spaces.

Are plum slate chippings suitable for driveways?

Yes, the larger sized plum chippings' flat shape provides stability, making them suitable for driveways and paths.

Can I use plum slate chippings around ponds and fish?

Yes, they are fish-friendly and safe for ponds and water features.

There are many other varieties of slate chippings available for your project. Check out them out!

About the author 

Ben Parrot is a landscape gardener and amateur geologist. He is the founder of Outdoor Aggregates, with the mission to create the first encyclopaedia for decorative aggregates. From natural stone through to decorative bark, these aggregates are critical to garden and landscape design, universally.

The problem: There isn't any place where all the different types of decorative landscaping materials and construction aggregates can be found, nor are the specifications of each type readily available. So, enriched by his extensive experience, and inspired by the timeless elegance and raw beauty of stone and rock, etched by nature's artistry over millennia, Outdoor Aggregates was born.