Retaining walls let you alter the grade or slope of land to create level areas that you can use for planting, adding a patio, or any other multitude of uses. More importantly, retaining walls protect the slope from eroding or collapsing.
As with freestanding stone walls, retaining walls can have a dry-tucked or mortared finish. In stone selection, careful consideration should be given to the proportions of individual stone size to overall wall height.
Most common uses of retaining walls are to create additional usable or functional space. This retaining wall holds back existing grades near the roadway and allows lawn areas to be lowered and leveled out. The ends of the wall melt into the landscape, eliminating the exposure of the back face of the wall.
There are endless possibilities for small and simple retaining walls and these shorter walls offer a powerful effect on any landscape. Smaller walls are still a perfect fit for retaining landscaped areas and leveling out lawn areas and are a great feature when used correctly. Retaining walls around 22″ in height are also perfect for sitting on. A natural stone top or even adding coping to shorter walls creates an instant usable bench, ideal if enclosing a patio or a deck.
Generally, existing grades at property lines cannot be changed, the areas inside those lines however are a blank slate that is up to its owner’s imagination. In layout options: retaining walls with a curvalinear design can offer a more natural look, blending into the landscape while walls with angled corners and straight lines offer a more structured/formal look.
When higher wall heights are required (five feet and above), terracing is a great option. Simply put, terracing breaks up a single tall wall height into several smaller heights. This design technique can soften the look of a monolithic wall, creating additional areas for planting and maintenance on level areas and reducing the potential for erosion across a steep slope.