Retaining wall systems offer many different functions and provide solutions to a range of landscaping challenges. These features are not only ideal for adding structure, drainage, and aesthetic appeal to softscapes, they can also form an integral part of your patio and outdoor entertainment areas. Here are some of the many reasons to incorporate a retaining wall system as part of your patio:
Reclaim a Slope
If a slope is taking up a part of your yard that could be put to better use as an outdoor living space, a retaining wall is one of the best possible solutions. A retaining wall can be installed by a Unilock Authorized Contractor in order to hold back soil and level an area for a paver patio where grass may have previously struggled to grow. The steepness of the slope and the amount of soil the retaining wall will be required to hold up will affect your selection of wall units. The steeper the slope, and the higher the retaining wall that is required, the more likely it is that you will require a specially engineered solution, or a wall unit uniquely designed for heavy-duty applications. Concord Wall from Unilock, for example, provides an extremely stable option for holding back heavy loads. This wall unit is available in tapered units to allow for curved walls that wrap seamlessly around your landscape’s natural contours and weave throughout your yard. Lineo Dimensional Stone, on the other hand, is a stunning decorative wall unit that can be used to create lower retaining walls for gentler gradients. Lineo Dimensional Stone is sleek and modern, and is comprised of elongated plank-like units that offer a high degree of graphic interest.
Related Read: Retaining Wall Designs That Look Just Like Natural Stone
Add Extra Seating
A low retaining wall, forming part of the boundary of your patio, can be used to provide extra seating that is always available. This sort of seating arrangement requires only a suitable height and coping that will provide a safe and comfortable seating surface. Unilock provides numerous coping options that perfectly suit this purpose. Try, for example, Ledgestone Coping, which is available in both fullnose and pitched edge variations; Limestone or Sandstone Coping, available in both natural edge and fullnose; or Brussels Fullnose for permanent seating that is both attractive and useful.
Brussels Fullnose is a stunning option because of its tumbled rock appearance and vast range of color options. For a perfectly cohesive design, pair Brussels Fullnose with Brussels Dimensional System wall units.
Keeping your patio protected from wind is a high priority for enjoying your patio at your convenience. While wind-shielding can be provided by trees and free-standing wall structures, retaining wall systems offer additional protection as they allow the patio be placed below ground level. This means that wind is less likely to reach your patio, and makes other wind screening techniques even more effective. Consider Roman Wall for creating retaining walls with the appearance and dependability of split and weathered rock.
Create Structure and Add Visual Depth
Retaining walls are ideal for adding structure to hardscapes and distinguishing outdoor rooms. They’re also essential for providing the support needed for multi-level patios. A multi-level design lends itself to visual depth and creates a setting that is well-defined. Consider incorporating Rivercrest Wall for your retaining walls and let its authentic stacked flagstone aesthetic complement the structure of your outdoor areas while adding architectural sophistication. With its Rapid Pillar System, Rivercrest Wall is ideal for adding both retaining walls and low walls, as well as other accentuating vertical features to patios. Rivercrest Wall uses Reala Surface Technology, developed by Unilock, to provide a richly detailed and ultra-realistic natural stone appearance.
Related Read: Adding Character to your Retaining Wall with Plantings, Water Features, Coping and Lighting
Install a Tucked-Away Feature
Whether it’s a fire pit tucked away in a hollow, carved out area of a hillside, a water feature that permeates your patio with a relaxing ambience, or an intimate corner with a hot tub, a retaining wall system can help to create secret nooks and crannies throughout your landscape. For retaining walls that blend into the natural environment with their rugged, aged rock appearance and warm color blends, consider Estate Wall. Estate Wall is ideal for creating private corners, rich in natural beauty and atmosphere, and can be used to create both straight and curved retaining walls. Estate Wall is also an excellent wall unit to use for fire pits, water features, bar or grill islands, or any other feature that deserves its own little corner of your hardscape. You can pair Estate Wall with the timeworn appeal of Town Hall banding and the charming natural flagstone aesthetic of Beacon Hill Flagstone for your patio flooring.
Retaining walls are also ideal for helping to add greenery to a patio. With the right design, you can use retaining walls as raised flower beds, or to house small trees and shrubs. Around the edge of your patio, you can allow decorative grasses to drape over the wall and blur the line between hardscape and softscape. U-Cara Multi-Face, for example, is ideal for raised plant beds around your outdoor living space and enhances the modern, minimalist aesthetic and fine texture of ornamental grasses.
The title image features an Estate Wall retaining wall system and fire pit with Town Hall accents, and Beacon Hill Flagstone patio pavers.