Use a Landscape Retaining Wall to Extend Your Yard

Use a Landscape Retaining Wall to Extend Your Yard
Mar 16, 2020

Hilly landscape can certainly be pretty, but when it comes to your Sioux Center, Iowa backyard, the last thing you want is steep grading that renders your outdoor spaces virtually unusable.  There’s nothing to stop you from using landscape design to at least create visual interest on grades, but depending on how steep the grade is, it could impact even your ability to add trees and bushes for privacy screening.

The good news is, you can regain usable square footage in your yard with the aid of a retaining wall.  How can this hardscaping feature extend your yard, and what other benefits could you gain by installing it?  Here’s what every Rock Valley, Iowa homeowner should know.

Containing a Hillside

While you can’t just bulldoze a hillside and call it a day, retaining walls offer the option to flatten an area at the base of a hill, increasing usable yard space.  Without a retaining wall, the cut you make in the hill will succumb to gravity, spilling soil and rocks into the space you just cleared and potentially creating a landslide in the process that actually brings the hillside tumbling down into your yard.  This is not only dangerous (especially if there are houses above you on the hill), but it really defeats the purpose.

With a stable retaining wall in place, you’ll shore up remaining hillside while clearing an open space that you can fill with landscaping, a vegetable garden, a patio, or a focal point and a gathering spot for relaxing and entertaining, like a water or fire feature.  It’s important to choose a reputable and experienced partner when installing a retaining wall, as a botched job could end up with the whole kit and caboodle falling into your recently cleared yard space.

Creating Zones

What if you have a gentle hillside in your yard that’s not terribly steep, but creates some difficulties when it comes to designing and implementing a cohesive and functional outdoor space?  Retaining walls can help here, too.

A low retaining wall can deliver the strength and stability needed to install a platform, like a patio, or a site structure, like a pergola or pavilion, on higher ground in your yard, without the fear of it sliding down the hill.  You could add terraces for farming so planting can be done on flat ground instead of graded expanse.

At the very least, pushing back a hilly area to create more flat ground in your backyard could allow you more room to play without throughout the yard.  Maybe you’ve been dreaming of an outdoor kitchen, but you’re worried about the amount of play space it will take away from kids.

When you extend the size of your yard, you can add the outdoor kitchen near the house and still leave plenty of room for an expansive lawn where kids can kick a ball or you can place outdoor play sets.  Retaining walls are a functional and attractive way to turn graded areas of your yard into usable space for landscaping, entertaining, and more.