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How to Build Gravity-Stacked Stone Walls

Filed Under: Know-How, Outdoors

Gravity-stacked stone walls give a romantic look to any outdoor space...and require surprisingly little effort to construct.

Growing up, any family Sunday drive through the country was punctuated by my Mom demanding to pull the car over...because she spotted some rocks. She'd send my father out to get the larger ones, while my brother and I (because we had small little kid hands) were responsible for digging out promising specimens. The idea was to get enough natural rocks to eventually build a few stone walls in the backyard, but we only ever amassed enough for garden borders.

If there had been enough rocks, we would've gone with a gravity-stacked retaining wall. This method really requires little more than stacking rocks against dirt fill. Depending on the type of stone chosen, you can have a formal or romantic look, but overall you will want to choose flatter rocks. (Which are, of course, easier to stack.) For the more tips and a complete project outline, check out out post on building a natural stone wall.

Want a few more ideas for building stone walls? Check out...
How to build an engineered retaining wall
How to Build a No Mortar Wall Video
Cultured stone - How I learned to love "phony stone"

And to see how to build stone walls, watch this...





  • stacked stone

    Dry stacked stone walls built without mortar. Friction, gravity and entanglement of the individual stones are the wall together. Although the work is hard physically, the techniques used are simple.
    Dry stacked stone wall.....
    A dry stacked wall is a bit flexible, they can absorb some frost heave in the soil. As a result, a concrete base is not usually required for dry stacked walls up to 3 meters in height. It is likely that we want to build no more than 3 feet anyway, since it is difficult to lift stones at that height. In addition, most municipalities do not require a permit for a dry wall tile up to 4 meters. But be sure to check with your local building department before building any wall. Even if permission is not required, there may be local zoning or planning regulations affecting the construction and placement of the wall.
    While construction techniques are simple, the stones may require some cutting and shaping to create a good fit interlock. Sandstone and limestone rubble usually are among the easiest to cut. If you are collecting instead of buying uncut find ways angular, not rounded forms.
    http://www.infinitistone.com.au/stonecladding

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