landscaping for the fun of kidslandscaping for the fun of kids


About Me

landscaping for the fun of kids

My name is Amelia - welcome to my blog! I am the mother of four very active boys ranging from 9 years to 3 years. When I am making improvements around my home and my property, I try to focus on how I can make those improvements while keeping things fun for the kids. This past year, I worked with a landscaper to create an outdoor environment that was fun for the kids, but looked nice from the road. I wanted the landscaper to design some elements into the yard that the kids could limb around on and let their imaginations run wild without having to worry about things getting destroyed in the process.

Latest Posts

Three Landscaping Ideas To Transform Your Backyard Into An Outside Paradise
15 June 2017

If your backyard is overrun with weeds, toys, over

4 Reasons to Remove the Tree on Your Property
6 February 2017

At one point, any tree on someone's property shoul

Retaining Wall Care ~ What Every Owner Needs To Know
30 January 2017

Do you have a retaining wall on your property

Landscape Privacy Solutions For Tricky Situations
30 January 2017

Do you love to spend time in your yard but are unc

Negotiating Nature: 4 Tips for Designing a Great Landscape for Your Business
27 January 2017

If you have a commercial property, you face differ

Retaining Wall Options: Stone, Block, Metal Or Wood

If you're planning on building a retaining wall on your property, you have to choose the right materials. While you might have your heart set on a particular style, it is important to consider other factors such as  weight and slope.

Here are the four main materials and a discussion of their positives and drawbacks.

Stone

Stone is the most natural looking material. You can choose either fieldstone or cultured stone. Fieldstone is real stone that is harvested from excavation sites. It gets its name from the fact that farmers would dig up fields to plant crops and end up with large stones. These stones would then be used to build walls or even houses. Stone is either dry stacked or stacked with mortar. If it is dry stacked, the builder will often back fill the gaps with soil. These gaps can provide space for flowers and moss to grow.

Cultured stone is synthetic. It is made to look like real fieldstone, but it is often made of cement. It is not as strong as real stone, but it is much more affordable.

One drawback to stone, real or cultured, is that it is not suited for retaining walls that have to hold back a large hill. If you have a large hill in your backyard, and need a retaining wall for engineering purposes, not aesthetic purposes, then you should avoid stone. Stone cannot hold back the weight of a heavy load of soil.

Metal

Metal is used for areas where you need a lot of strength. It doesn't look nice, but don't worry, you can disguise it. The metal panels are installed like a fence. There are posts that are staggered at intervals and connect the main metal panels. Once the metal wall is installed, you can cover it with shrubs or even paint it.

Metal retaining walls are expensive, but they last a long time and require little upkeep. You don't have to worry about mortar cracking and needing to be fixed because there is no mortar, only rust proof screws and brackets.

Concrete Block

If you need strength, but are not a fan of using metal, then you should look at concrete blocks. These are large blocks that are designed to be used for retaining walls. They are engineered to be stronger than regular cinder blocks. You might have seen them on construction sites, or even as part of a block wall at a large public park.

They are not as pretty as stone, but they don't require mortar. They are uniform in size and can be laid side by side with no noticeable gap.

Wood

If you are installing a retaining wall mainly for decorative purposes, then you should consider wood. Many people who have a sloping backyard don't need the strength of engineered concrete block or metal.

The only two woods that can be used are cedar or pressure treated wood. If you use cedar, you will need to have a plastic backer. While cedar is resistant to moisture, it is not completely waterproof. The plastic backer will keep the moisture from the soil from making contact with the wood.