A courtly stone wall, nobly paving the way through property perimeters, driveway pavements and garden borders, adds a regal touch to a home domain. You don't need a a six foot stone wall with professional masonry work to have the elegance of a stone wall weave through your landscape. A three foot stacked stone wall can create the same elegance and exclusiveness of a masonry privacy wall without the heavy price. Stone, soil and sand are the bulk of your needs.
However, you will still have to pay with some back-breaking work. If you're not used to back-breaking work (and even if you are), familiarize yourself with proper lifting techniques. Keep your sessions short and take a few weeks or months to complete the project. If your stones are delivered to your house, make sure they are unloaded as close to your working area as possible.
Before you start lifting stones, plan the path for your stone wall. You can use a rope or even a garden hose to outline the path for the wall until you are firm in your decision. Once your decision is set in stone, use spray paint or flour to emulate the trail of the stone wall.
After your roadmap is laid out on the ground, hammer stakes into the ground at even intervals to act as height-building guides. On each stake, make a mark indicating where the height of the wall should be. Get a string, and connect the string to the stakes where the height indicator lines are. Make sure the string is pulled tight enough to be an accurate guide.
Then you have the dirty work. Start digging and create a trough along the path about six inches deep. When that is completed, pour a two inch layer of sand into the trough you just dug. You now have a channel ready for wall building.
Use the biggest stones for the base of the wall, and try and save the large flat ones for the top layer. As you build, notice which side of the stone you want appearing outwards. When you place the bottom layer stones down, tilt them slightly backwards into the ground. As you layer the stones, stagger as you go, and tilt each one similarly to create stability. If you're planning on showcasing some floral work that stems from within the wall, don't forget to leave some place for plant pockets. But do not allow a vertical line to form from the bottom of the wall to the top of the wall or your wall will lose stability.
It would be nice if every stone fit like a puzzle piece, but they won't. Get them interlocked as best as you can, then fill in all the cracks and crevices with soil so they don't move in place. You want the wall packed nice and tight. You also want to keep building at a consistent height. Use your stakes as a guide, and make sure you adjust your measurements for sloping grounds. Take your time. Don't rush. Enjoy the process.
Your stone wall can remain solid and stately, or you can soften it up with climbing flowers, container plants and other decorative elements. To give your wall added elegance, add soil for raised beds behind the wall. The soil will drain well, and you can comfortably rest yourself or your refreshments on your stone wall as you tend to your enchanting garden.
Let your handsome stone wall reflect your home. Whether your stone wall graciously leads a guest around a garden or is a regal welcome to the front door, it will always distinguish your home as your castle and your yard will turn into a beautiful kingdom for everyone to admire.