Episode: 4
Title: Walls
Broadcast: September 3rd
Presenter: Nigel Ruck

Retaining walls and terraces are the best way to make the most out of a steep block and they look sensational! Nigel shows us different kinds of walls in this one-of-a-kind garden.

  • The first wall has been achieved with a simple but strong treated pine sleeper wall with some steps in front. The posts go deep into the ground to support the wall but if you can’t get this depth because of rock or clay, you can also use deadmen sleepers that go from the front of the wall back into the earth to give the wall support.
  • There’s also support from the corner, which has a post and a wall that goes up the slope. The critical element is the backfill behind the wall – you have to provide good drainage to reduce the hydrostatic pressure.
  • The pool construction is half in-ground and half above, creating a terrace. The wall here is so visible from the house so it required a nice finish. The owner has chosen mosaic tiles, which look fantastic. You could do the same for a feature wall of your own.
  • As you come up the garden you’re greeted with a timber-clad wall that looks fantastic and holds up the lawn. The main wall is a treated pine sleeper wall, which gives it all the strength. They have cladded the front with wide merbau decking boards and allowed those to fade and weather to give it that “beachside look”.
  • For the raised garden beds they’ve used hydrasplit sandstone, which always looks great. If you can’t get your hands on sandstone, consider bluestone or limestone.
  • For the top three walls, they’ve used a stone cladding product, which usually come in tile form with a flat back and a natural-split face. They get glued onto a masonry wall, which gives the wall the strength.
  • The most important thing to remember when building walls in your garden is to make sure they’re built properly and that you check the council regulation in your area because many walls need to be designed and approved by an engineer.