Retaining walls are a necessity in many landscapes, as they help stabilize uneven terrain or at least add visual interest by elevating areas of the yard. One issue that is often overlooked by homeowners when designing the retaining walls, though, is the extra maintenance work they can cause. This is because it is difficult to trim the grass right up against the wall without doing it by hand or chancing mechanical damage to the wall from lawnmowers and string trimmers. The following ideas can help you avoid these challenges.
Idea #1: Add a permanent buffer
A buffer between the lawn the wall is one of the best options. Not only does this minimize the need to mow too closely to the wall, it also creates a stronger footing so that water is less likely to collect next to the wall and cause uneven settling. Using concrete curbing or flat paving stones to create the buffer means that it is relatively solid and durable.
Weeds nor grass won't be able to grow right up against the wall, which in itself minimizes the amount of lawn maintenance in the area. If you make the buffer wide enough, you can mow right over it, which means the grass is trimmed right up to the wall and buffer without the need of hand trimming or chancing mechanical damage with a string trimmer.
Idea #2: Plant a border bed
If you enjoy flowers, a border may be just the thing to keep grass and weeds from growing right up against the wall. This way you will never need to mow or trim close the wall. If you stay on top of weeding and use mulch, minimal hand weeding will be necessary. As an added benefit, the area at the base of a retaining wall is often moist since water trickles down from above.
Make the bed at least 1 foot wide. You may also want to enclose it on the lawn side with edging so that grass doesn't encroach on the bed. As for plant choices, opt for annuals or smaller perennials. You don't want shrubs or other plants that have extensive root systems, as these could damage the wall. Heat-loving plants grow well when planted against a south-facing retaining wall, while you will need to opt for shade-loving plants if the wall faces north.
For more help, talk to a landscaping company in your area, such as Rock Solid Services LLC.
When I was young, I loved helping my mother in the garden. Our yard was filled with plants and flowers that she kept in immaculate condition. Once I was an adult and bought my first home, I learned that there was much more to landscaping a yard than I ever imagined! After a little trial and error planting a few flowers in my yard that died quickly, I realized the technology that is available to aspiring gardeners makes trial and error a thing of the past. After I found out what my "hardiness zone" was, I realized I was planting flowers made for much cooler climates, and I played around with software that let me design my yard very easily! I learned a lot throughout the experience, so I thought I would share my tips with everyone who needs them. Come back often to check out my new tips!