Gardening Magazine

A Bit of Wall Construction

By Patientgardener @patientgardener

A bit of wall construction

Whilst I haven’t had much time in the garden over the past few weeks due to the weather and a sick cat that time has been quite productive.  There is of course a lot of tidying up that needs to be done, weeding etc but I needed to have something which would give me more instant gratification so I have decided to tackle a project that’s been on my mind for a while.

A bit of wall construction

The border with the cherry tree slopes quite steeply to the path and I have struggled for years to make this area work.  The plants I want to plant here are generally small alpine type plants which benefit from the drainage and the sunshine but they get lost in the border so I needed some definition something to set them against.  Given that we live on the side of the Malvern hills and dig up Malvern stone (granite) all the time we have a reasonable supply of stone so it seems sensible to use it to create a sort of retaining wall.

A bit of wall construction

The construction started off fairly well but dry stone walling is an art form that I have little practice off and it seems to me that its very much a matter of luck as to whether you can find stones that fit together or not. You need fairly flat stones at the bottom to rest the next layers on but many of the stones we have are anything but flat so there is a lot of fiddling around and carrying stones back and forth trying to make it work. Also there are only so many of the larger stones and I am finding that the stones are getting smaller and when I stand back and look from a distance the wall seems to go lower.  I think there are some more stones further up the garden which I might be able to use but it is what it is and it has allowed me to reduce the slope and the plants have a nice foil to grow against.

A bit of wall construction

I’m hoping to use some of the gaps between stones for succulents and maybe lewisias or auriculas.

All told though I am pleased with the change and hopefully there will be enough stone to get to the far end of the border but if not I will have to come up with some sort of artistic way to make a shorter wall look intentional!


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