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January 2018

How to Create a Retaining Wall For Your Garden

The main source of life in your backyard after the sun is the soil.  This is the one that provides the nutrients for plants to grow tall and strong.  Therefore, it is important to protect it and keep the rain from washing it away.  Retaining walls are built to protect your garden soil from eroding.

Before creating a retaining wall for your garden and how important it is, you should know the basics of what this construction is about.

What is a Retaining Wall?

A retaining wall is built over an excavation or to make a soil bank.  It provides support to the soil, preventing it from eroding or collapsing altogether.   They can be erected to fill earth or to give strong support to terraced gardens.

A retaining wall can be built out of many materials. You can build one of concrete, concrete blocks, timber logs, stones, or bricks.  The choice will probably be more esthetical than practical.  A retaining wall provides a nice look to a backyard.

If you are planning on building your own wall, consider some esthetical aspects before building.  Make sure you gather all the materials that you need, and that you get a professional finish.  More on this below.

The Importance of a Retaining Wall

It is easy now to see the importance of retaining walls.  These actually provide effective support to the entire structure of your garden.  They are usually thought of utilitarian structures that keep your garden from falling apart.

However, since you already are in the building of the wall, you can create it in such a way that it provides a nice outdoor sight.

How to Make One

The following are the materials that you will need to build a retaining wall:

  • Shovel
  • Landscaping stones and fabric
  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Gravel
  • Work gloves
  • Safety goggles
  • Soil Tamper

Step 1

Plan the design and basically establish the outline of your wall using wooden sticks and string.  You can then use paint to make the outline.  Get yourself your load of stones before getting started so that you know that you have enough.

Step 2

Start digging on the line that you made on the floor.  This trench should be a little wider than the largest rock.  This whole can be around 6 inches deep.  Make sure the bottom of the trench is perfectly layered.  Drop in the sand and stone dust.  Level this sand by tamping down the bottom of the trench.

Step 3

Throw in the stones and make sure this layer ends  up as straight as possible.  If it requires adjustment, use a hammer.

Step 4

For the first course of bricks, break one in half and try to interlock it with the first rock on this course.  For the next layer, you start with a full brick since you want the edges to offset.

Step 5

Before laying the second course, use a level to verify that your construction is upright and leveled.  If it is not, make sure you make the necessary adjustments.

Step 6

Lay the second course of stones interlocking them with the first set of stones.

Step 7

Fill in the trench with the dirt you excavated to provide a firm foundation.

Step 8

Continue placing stones in layer and interlocking them with the top row.

Step 9

When you are done piling up the stones and have the desired height, lay landscaping fabric on the back of the wall.

A Professional Look

Once you have built your retainin wall, it is important that you give it a professional look.  Hire someone to take a look at what you have done and make some adjustments.

We recommend centuria landscapes, who specialize in landscape design in Vancouver.  We are pretty sure you will be delighted as well.