“The finest workers in stone are not copper or steel tools, but the gentle touches of air and water working at their leisure with a liberal allowance of time”
– Henry David Thoreau
River rock is a beautiful stone with a smooth rounded surface due to centuries of water washing over it. The smoothed, five-sided stones range widely in color usually from tan to grey. This stone can be used in various applications, however, due to the smaller average size of river rock stone (typically 6-8”), it is best used for shorter height retaining or freestanding walls such as seat walls.
River rock is an exceptional stone for boundaries of water features or as a loosely laid stone wall (pictured above). Constructing walls out of river rock can be described as stacking footballs, so great care and caution should be taken when stacking dry laid walls and design should not permit any dry stacked river rock wall to be higher than two or three courses. After this height, failure is imminent.
If river rock is desired for retaining wall purposes, an exposed mortared joint is required to allow for proper construction with these round shaped stones.