Plant Selection Guidelines

Permeable Pavers are units (such as brick, cobbles or concrete pavers) which are typically set in sand over gravel to allow water to infiltrate between the units and into the ground below. Their effectiveness relies on the ability of the ground below to percolate. Using pavers for hardscape areas can create visual continuity with sidewalk landscaping and result in an overall effect of a walkway through a garden rather than a discrete planter cut into an expanse of concrete. Any paver type may be used in sidewalk landscaping, however for driveways and required path of travel area for the purposes of the Sidewalk Landscaping Permit only approved pavers may be used. Ask for the 'Special Sidewalk Surface' permit and list available from DPW Bureau of Street Use and Mapping (link at list below). Note that Calstone ( is a local manufacturer with a wide variety of forms and colors. Please note a paved path-of-travel walkway (typically 6' wide) remains concrete. Pavers should be set professionally according to manufacturer recommendation.

Plant*SF projects most often use this paver: Calstone "Permeable 4x8"; standard finish; standard (gray) color set in 'herringbone bond' pattern. Pictured below:

Local Professional Design and Permitting Assistance

Local Concrete Contractors, Gardeners and Plant Installers

Local Nurseries / Places to Buy Plants

Local Suppliers who deliver Soil, Mulch, Rock, Decomposed Granite, Pavers:
Broadmoor (South San Francisco)

Lyngso (Redwood City)


Related Agencies and Organizations:

Alliance for a Clean Waterfront

California Native Plant Society

Earth Island Institute

Environmental Protection Agency

Friends of the Urban Forest

Mediterranean Garden Society

Nature in the City

San Mateo County Sustainable Streets Guidelines

San Francisco Beautiful

San Francisco Bicycle Coalition

San Francisco Bureau of Street Use and Mapping (BSM)

San Francisco Bureau of Urban Forestry (BUF)

San Francisco Community Challenge Grant (CCG)

San Francisco Department of Public Works (DPW)

San Francisco Department of the Environment (DOE)

San Francisco Mayor's Office of Community Development (MOCD)

San Francisco Mayor's Office of Neighborhood Services (MONS)

San Francisco Parks Alliance

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC)

San Francisco Trees

San Francisco Urban Forestry Council

SPUR (Sustainability Committee)



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