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Building a Custom Rockery Retaining

Updated: Nov 21, 2023

A Natural Solution for Soil Retention and Erosion Prevention

When it comes to soil retention and preventing erosion on your property, a custom rockery retaining wall can be an excellent solution. This dry stacked wall not only serves its purpose effectively but also adds a natural and aesthetically pleasing look to your landscape. In this article, we will explore the purpose, construction process, engineering considerations, and the numerous benefits of opting for a custom rockery. Whether you require excavation services in Seattle or Renton, this guide will provide you with valuable insights.

The Purpose of a Dry Stacked Custom Rockery Retaining Wall

A custom rockery retaining wall serves multiple purposes, including:

  1. Holding back soils: By creating a sturdy barrier, these walls prevent soil erosion and the loss of valuable land.

  2. Utilizing land effectively: Custom rockeries make it possible to maximize your property's usable space by creating level surfaces on sloped areas.

  3. Providing a natural look: With a variety of rock types available, you can choose materials that seamlessly blend with the surrounding environment, adding a natural and visually appealing touch to your landscape.

  4. Preventing erosion: The strategically placed rocks and the wall structure effectively redirect water flow, mitigating the risk of erosion and maintaining the stability of your property.

How a Custom Rockery Retaining Wall is Built

  1. Layout: Begin by marking the desired location and outline of the wall, ensuring it aligns with your landscape design plans.

  2. Dig-out base: Excavate the area, creating a solid foundation for the wall and ensuring proper drainage.

  3. Removing organics: Clear all organic material from the soil within and around the future wall to maintain its stability and durability.

  4. Placing the base: Begin stacking larger rocks at the bottom to form a stable base for the wall.

  5. Drainage considerations: Install a drainage pipe and layer of gravel if required to prevent water buildup behind the wall.

  6. Staggering rocks: To eliminate continuous lines and create a more natural appearance, stagger the placement of rocks as you build the wall.

  7. Stacking rocks: Continue stacking rocks according to your desired height or engineered specifications, ensuring each layer is sturdy and well-balanced.

Engineering and Permitting Considerations

Engineering and permitting requirements for custom rockery retaining walls vary depending on local jurisdictions. Typically, walls under 4 feet in height do not require engineering services. However, if engineering is necessary, the following steps are involved:

  1. Soil analysis: A geotechnical engineer will assess the soil properties to determine the wall's stability and design requirements.

  2. Structural engineering: Once the soil analysis is complete, a structural engineer will be consulted to design the wall according to the specific soil conditions and load-bearing requirements.

  3. Permitting and review: After the wall design is finalized, the plans must be submitted to the respective jurisdiction for permitting and review to ensure compliance with local regulations and standards.

Benefits of a Custom Rockery Retaining Wall

Opting for a custom rockery retaining wall offers several advantages, including:

  1. Cost-effectiveness: Custom rockeries are often more affordable than block or poured concrete walls, making them a budget-friendly option for soil retention projects.

  2. Aesthetic appeal: The use of natural rocks and the ability to customize the design provides a visually pleasing addition to your landscape.

  3. Durability: Properly constructed custom rockeries are built to withstand the test of time, offering long-term stability and reliability.

  4. Environmentally friendly: As the wall utilizes locally sourced rocks, it reduces the need



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