Stone is a prime material for patio flooring. It's a naturally rugged material that can withstand both the rigors of being outdoors and the foot traffic associated with a patio. What's more, natural stone comes in many colors, finishes, and styles, so you can use the material for any type of patio. Each stone conveys its own qualities and benefits. Below are some of the options you can choose.

1. Flagstone

Flagstone is a sedimentary rock that comes in a variety of color gradients. Contractors can lay it for a patio using different methods, including with mortar. However, the Landscaping Network recommends laying it with narrow joints without mortar so the water can permeate the ground rather than run off. Look for flagstone from your area so it looks natural in your yard.

2. Travertine

Travertine is also a sedimentary rock but one that's more closely related to limestone. Like flagstone, travertine comes with pleasing gradients of color. However, they tend to be subtler than with flagstone. They're also warmer in hue — you see a lot of yellows and oranges. Despite its color warmth, travertine is unique in that it stays cool to the touch even in the sun.

3. Granite

Granite is an igneous rock that you traditionally associate with kitchen countertops. However, it's an incredibly durable stone that's suitable for paving, including for your patio. What's more, granite comes in the widest variety of colors and patterns of any natural stone used in paving. You can also choose from different laying patterns since the contractors use pavers instead of slabs.

4. Basalt

Basalt, also an igneous rock, is another natural stone you often don't associate with patio flooring. The stone is typically dark and fine-grained. When used for patios, the contractors often lay larger pavers for a uniform appearance. Such a patio will feel modern because of the uniformity of color.

5. Slate

Slate, a metamorphic rock, is one of the strongest natural stones used in building. Indeed, when you use slate for roofs, the shingles sometimes outlast the house. Gray is the typical color you associate with slate. However, it can come in greens, reds, and purples. What's more, as the material ages, it develops a unique patina that identifies it as slate. Consider smaller pavers to show off the colors.

6. Marble

Marble is another metamorphic rock that's easy to identify. Indeed, few people will mistake marble's characteristic veining, though it also comes in patterning similar to granite. Needless to say, marble is ideal for a high-end patio floor. With such a floor, you may want to minimize how much furniture you put on top so the beauty of the flooring can show.

Consider one of the above natural stone products as flooring for your patio.