Boulder walls are just that – an interface made with hardscape, typically oversized stones or boulders. They can be utilized for practical reasons or as a method to accentuate aspects of your backyard. Even though some walls may look like they were just thrown together, a boulder can be surprisingly meticulous to install. But once the stones have settled, most walls do not need much additional maintenance.
The Benefits of a Boulder Wall
A boulder wall has the potential to add to your home’s value, especially if they’re used as a retaining wall. It adds versatility to the open space of your yard, with many homeowners using boulder walls to help designate certain areas from the rest of the outdoor space, separate flower gardens, or as a geographical marker.
Boulder walls are low maintenance. As you can imagine, stones and rocks don’t require much maintenance; as they tend to stay static with very little surface changes in the long run. Once the wall is constructed, there’s hardly any maintenance required, unless some boulders moved due to the natural elements.
The required maintenance is up to you. If you are using boulder walls with intricate designs or stones that may be susceptible to erosion, then there may be some regular upkeep required. A boulder wall is naturally repellent to harsh weather conditions and does not need repair.
A stone wall can be constructed via different methods, with the homeowner being able to use different rock types to create the wall. You can use a traditional stone and mortar wall, or build a dry stack wall so they can be moved at will. H
Homeowners also have the option to use ecologically-friendly methods to build the wall. If you live in the area where you have an abundance of boulders, or perhaps have a neighbor friend that wants to get rid of rocks, you can use them too. Make sure to contact the local association to ensure that you can use rocks and boulders gathered from public spaces.
Caring for Your Boulder Wall
It’s important to note that you may need a permit to design a boulder wall on your property. Speak to the proper authorities to ensure that you can create additional structures. If it conforms to safety regulations and will not damage the aesthetic of the community, then you will more than likely be granted a permit. If the wall is going to be taller than four feet, then a permit is required as well as a zoning check and inspection.
Even though a boulder wall doesn’t require much maintenance, it’s important to be aware of their placement since you will not have room to move the boulders once they have settled. You should use boulders that won’t have large gaps between them to ward off pests. The gray and red squirrel are common wildlife species in Minnesota. If your rock wall has adequate space, then it is normal to find a squirrel or other wildlife taking refuge in a large gap in between rocks. Smaller gaps will ensure that your family members do not come face-to-face with an annoyed squirrel.
If soil is being used as a foundation for the rock wall, then it is important that it is firmly packed to accommodate for each row of boulders. For larger boulders, use pallet forks. They are designed to carry heavier loads, and are a viable way to transport them short distances.
A boulder wall is highly functional, as they can be used to enhance the aesthetic of your backyard, as well as hold back earth or water for several decades without any additional intervention. Homeowners with aggressive hills can use a stone wall, providing an ecologically friendly way to preserve the natural vegetation of the area and prevent storm water runoff. A boulder wall is beautiful, traditional, and affordable when compared to walls made from other structures.