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You can install a flexible downspout extension on your downspout that is next to your front step and run it behind your bush out past your mulch to keep the water from washing your mulch away. You can buy the flexible downspout extensions at Lowes or Home Depot.
What is the water source? It looks like it is coming from a drain pipe behind a shrub? I would recommend relocating that to dump to a different location. No matter what type of edging you install on the bed with the mulch, a massive amount of water from that down pipe will cause some overflow and mess. Maybe you can incorporate a stone trail where the water flows, if you can't relocate the down pipe. Ideally, I'd want to see the drain pipe go under the side walk, and out by the grass, or if its by a garage, down the driveway.
Using warm soapy water is the best for daily cleaning. There are many granite cleaners on the market that will help you if you really want to scrub and bring back that original shine. Laticrete (formerly DuPont) stone care products are great. They make a revitilizer spray that is excellent for weekly cleaning. It has a bit of sealer in it as well, so it will help keep those tops shiny.
We use and reccommend TS&G Disinfectant & Cleaner. It is made by MIRACLE Sealants Company and you can use it safely on Tile, Stone, & Grout. It kills Molds & Mildew, Disinfects, Bacterial, Fungicidal, Cleanses, Deoderizes, & Eliminates Oders.
Be certain that this is something you plan to use for years and years as the ROI on homeowner-specific improvements are not very high. Budget for the concrete work involved is usually around $15-20K alone, not including the poles and painting. If you plan to sell your home in less than 10 years or would need the court for less than 10 years, don't do it. A new upgraded entry way, minor kitchen update, interior room/living space addition or new Hardie Board siding will give you a much better return on investment.
As a builder I could tell you there is no right answer. I built my home on the water and I have switched from eal grass to artificial . My reasoning was to conserve water and time. Now I can also focas my time on other things. I've addded a complet creek that runs down my entite property into the lake and addded palm tees and other floweers and tees. The amazing thing is hoe green my yard always appears from lake and now I have installed over 20 other homes with the same product. For me the switch was completely worth it as well as all the new clients I've gathered from it. It's a personal decision for sure. www.greenbuiltwa.com
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