Here in New England, a stone wall is an iconic part of the landscape. They are used to define property limits as well as a design element for them. A stone wall can also be the finishing landscaping touch to your garden. Stone walls in particular lend many qualities to a landscape.
A stone wall define areas, keeping your patio a space apart from your roses and making cozy outdoor ‘rooms.’ They provide focal points for a given section of garden, giving a dramatic end point to an otherwise bland, open-ended lawn. Stone walls artfully arranged around a landscape give it shape and balance.
A stone wall can be a feature in and of itself. They can be elegant eye-catchers in formal gardens and rustic resting places along quiet paths. A stone wall will look lovely in your yard and stays pretty year round, aging gracefully over the years.
A stone wall provides a number of benefits, including:
- Provides definition
- Widens your choice of plants
- Protects privacy
- Optimizes irrigation
- Provides beauty
It’s important to know the two basic types of stone walls so that you can determine which type of stone wall is best suited for your needs and preference for appearance:
Retaining wall A retaining wall is a type of structure designed to hold soil in place. Landscaping retaining walls are generally gravity walls, which essentially “lean” back against the soil and use their mass to keep it in place.
Retaining walls add layers to your garden, enabling you to stack flowers and herbs for a stunning visual effect. You can terrace an area so that each plant gets a chance to shine on its own level. This will make your garden look fuller and lusher without having to plant lots of greenery.
A retaining wall can subtly push plants up to the sun, giving you more space to plant light-loving flowers. At the same time, there are some herbs and flowers that need shade, and a stone retaining wall can shelter them in an otherwise exposed expanse of yard. It’s the chance to determine what you can plant regardless of the original terrain, instead of being victim to the original contour of your land and the light your yard gets naturally.
Freestanding wall Freestanding walls are exactly what they sound like – freestanding. They often define property boundaries or specific areas within a landscape and can be built either ‘wet’ (with concrete) or ‘dry’ (without concrete and using gravity and friction to hold the stones together).
A freestanding stone wall around a patio offers a certain level of privacy, blocking prying eyes from spying on your yard. It also keeps small children and pets corralled within an area where you can have a good view of them while you hang out.
A stone wall is useful and beautiful in many ways. If you are thinking of adding a stone wall or retaining wall to your landscape, talk to us. The stone wall experts at Manning Tree & Landscape would love to help you with your backyard enhancements.