We Build Retaining Walls Right

A house on a hill almost sounds like an excerpt from a story book. It is beautiful but having a house in a sloppy area can prove to be hectic when it comes to landscaping. We at Schneider’s Lawn N’ Landscape have got you covered with our carefully constructed and beautifully designed Retaining walls.

Why do people need Retaining Walls?

The need for retaining walls during landscaping comes up on homes in sloppy terrains. They serve two functions.

Soil retaining

The main idea behind retaining walls was to bind the ground not to be washed away during rainy seasons. This idea has been used for long. It is safe and very protective. Retaining walls are a perfect way of ensuring your soil is not eroded.


On a sloppy area retaining walls make up a significant part of the landscape design. It is only wise they have beautiful designs to create an impressive view of the landscape. This is what you need in your sloppy home.

A few Retaining Wall Design Ideas

Build with Rocks

Rock retaining walls is an authentic design from England. It’s hard to construct as the rocks are laid in a way that ensures the foundation remains dry at all times. The design avoids water getting into the interior parts to stop it from compromising the strength of the soil under. It is expensive as compared to all other retaining walls design due to the complexity of placing the rocks. The rocks can be mortared in some cases to increase stability in case moisture penetrates.

Design with Boulders

Retaining walls at times are made using stones held by a Boulder. The boulder should be heavy enough for the stability of the wall. The Boulder retaining wall raises landscape planting areas to an appropriate level in places with a high water table. It also acts as a barrier to soil carried from elsewhere. We only encourage it if you have plants native to a mountainous area.

Terrace Walls

Terraced retaining walls are efficient for sloppy areas. They create space on slopes that can be used as gardens. They also give a beautiful view of Terraces. When building a Terrace, it is always important to consider the material to be used in-between the terraces. Some of the materials used are decorative rocks and sod. Terraced retaining walls can complement any architectural design if well constructed. When building a Terrace wall, the soil should be well compacted to increase the stability of the wall. They Should be well compacted to increase the stability of the wall.

Types of Retaining Walls

Architects primarily design retaining walls. The Retaining Wall designs can be simple or complicated depending on the amount of money available. The most important part of a retaining wall is the material making it. Retaining walls are functional; they, therefore, should be constructed using a durable material to perform the soil binding functions.

Gravity Retaining Walls

A gravity wall is built when there are heavy materials. It is constructed with a Footing Setback to resist pressure from the soil. Short retaining walls are made using natural stones and concrete. They are flexible and do not need a footing in snow areas. It is important to have a good drainage behind a gravity wall to reduce pressure on the wall. Some gravity walls are designed to retain water. Proper drainage materials get rid of the hydrostatic pressure to improve stability of the wall.


Cantilevered Retaining walls can be made from blocks or concrete. They differ from gravity retaining walls as they are reinforced with a steel bar or rails. The concrete shaped as a T has an internal steel stem and acts as a beam to the retaining walls. Cantilevered Retaining walls are the most durable.

Conterfort/Buttress on Cantilevered Wall

Buttressed retaining walls are made in a similar way to cantilevered walls with slight adjustments. They have an added Conterfort to support the back of the wall. The buttress increases the ability of the wall to resist pressure from high leveled heavyweights. They are constructed in a right-angled manner on the footing of the wall.

Crib Locks Retaining Walls

Crib locks retaining walls are no reinforced. They are made using interlocking concrete blocks. After the cribs are interlocked, the inside parts are filled with compact fillers.

Typical materials used to make retaining walls

The above types of retaining walls are made reliable and efficient by the kinds of materials used to make them.


Blocks have become popular with time due to their versatility. They come in different colors sizes and shapes to suit any landscape design. They work best for lower retaining walls that do not require footings. The block designs are seen well on free walls.
· Blocks are able to control water, and drainage runoff as the spacing between the blocks is filled.
· The block material is easy to sculpt and curve in design compared to concrete.
· Blocks such as Cinder are relatively cheap compared to concrete.
· They are convenient since they are stacked on each other for support.
· They, therefore, do not require a mortar
· Blocks are not very strong to withstand pressure and gravity. They are not suitable for walls higher than 4 feet.
· Blocks are artificial made. They are not best for a natural landscape design as they lack the stone natural look.


Retaining walls made from interlocking concrete blocks can be quickly put up. They are made from Concrete stones interlocked with pins. Interlocks are not fitted with mortar. They fit into each other for stability.
· Interlocks are robust and stable to make high retaining walls.
· They come in stylish designs of curved blocks and capping
· Interlocking concrete blocks are cost efficient as they are both water and fire resistance.
· They are available in concretes with many shapes textures and colors.
· The hole to spot system used for interlocking retaining walls provides an automatic buttress or support for the wall.


Concrete stones are useful in terms of strength and durability. They do not have any aesthetic value but can be decorated and painted. Stone concrete are less expensive as compared to the natural rock. The biggest advantage of Concrete stones is the have shape and can be used to make modern symmetrical designs. Due to their strengths, they are the material for a retaining wall on a sloppy terrain. Concrete walls are always made with footings for stability.
· They make the strongest and durable retaining walls among all materials.
· They are easily molded to different shapes.
· Since they have a footing, concrete stones can build the highest retaining walls.
· Concrete stones are very permanent. It is not possible to make repairs on a wall constructed with concrete.
· Due to some manufacturing deficiencies, Concrete stones crack at times.
· Concrete stones are best suited for modern house designs. They do not blend with older designs.

Natural rock retaining walls

Old is gold. Natural stones were used since the concept of retaining walls began. They are the most expensive compared to all materials used to make a retaining wall. The more ancient the stone the expensive it is. A wall made from natural rocks will require regular maintenance. The natural stones wear in the exposure to natural weather elements. Any carvings and designs will need to be modified once in a while.
· Their texture and color provide the best blend of a natural landscape design.
· Natural Rocks have the most authentic beauty on a retaining wall.
· They can be used for curved designs.
· Natural rocks cannot be used for bigger and higher retaining walls due to their expensive nature.
· For curved walls, they take a long time to curve and move since they are massive.
· They have no way of creating extra support on a retaining wall they, therefore, cannot build walls more than 3 feet high.
· They leave too much space when stacked together and therefore cannot effectively control water flow.


Bricks are extremely durable and have an authentic look and feel. They are as expensive as natural stones. Since they are made from clay, they tend to blend in with the environment with time.
· The red earth color of bricks is attractive
· They can last for years without maintenance
· Brick blend in contemporary and traditional landscape designs.
· Brick retaining wall needs professional skills to build and a lot of manpower, in case the Bricks are being made on site.
· It requires a defined drainage system since the bricks cannot be exposed to water for long periods.

Installation of the Retaining Walls

Installing a retaining wall is easiest when using blocks for a wall less than 4 feet long. For longer walls with complex materials such as bricks, the use of an experienced landscape designer is required. We at Schneider’s Lawn N’ Landscape are dedicated to building a retaining wall that is both decorative and functional.

A few steps that may be involved in the Installation Process

The first process in building a retaining wall is marking the site for the wall. Removing any plants or grass on the wall area is important.
· Dig a trench for the bottom of the wall. For every 8 inches of the wall, the trench should be 1 inch.
· The trench should be layered with good landscape material.
· Set in a perforated drain pipe in the full length of the trench. Cover with 4 inches of gravel leveled up and set in followed by an inch of bedding sand.
· When the base is complete, start on the wall. The wall is building a tier at a time.
· Whichever materials are used for the wall they are fitted together as close as possible. Backfill each row with gravel to increase stability. This ensures water does not drain from spaces
· Weep holes are added at the end of footing to avoid water accumulating
· On a slope, the wall should lean slightly towards the hill. Building the wall against the hill counters the effect of gravity.
· Planting flowers and other plants along the base of the wall helps to stabilize it. The roots simply hold the soil together. The plants also blend the wall to the surrounding environment.
· Do not plant trees around the wall as the migrating roots weaken the stability of the soil holding the wall.

Cost of a Retaining Wall

The price of a retaining wall depends on many factors including the style and length. We offer affordable solutions to get exactly what you want to get your wall built for a reasonable cost. At Schneider’s Lawn N’ Landscape, we understand different terrains and the perfect designs for a retaining wall suitable to each area. Our qualified team promises to provide you with a retaining wall that blends with your architectural design to add value to your landscape. Call us on 952-452-4828; we would love to hear your needs and give you the solution you need. Get in touch today!!!

We build retaining walls for customers in Eden Prairie, Chanhassen, Chaska, Waconia, Mound, Minnetonka, Prior Lake, Wayzata and surrounding areas.