Selecting Stone for Your Stacked Stone Wall Selecting Stone for Your Stacked Stone Wall
A stacked stone wall is a beautiful addition to your landscaping. The stacked stone wall is different from other traditional type walls as they are built without the use of mortar or some sort of adhesive. This type of wall was used for centuries as a means to measure off land, keep livestock, and to build retaining walls. Stacked stone walls are built in a way that they do not need any type of mortar or cement. They are interlocked and built with a staggered construction. This adds a tremendous amount of strength to the stone stacked wall that is very hard to break. Building a stacked stone wall will require a certain type of stone for the process. Great attention to detail is needed in the process. Here are a few tips for selecting your stone.
Large or Small Does Not Matter
In fact, you are going to need both. The stones you choose will need to be both large and small in order to fit all the nooks and crannies. Different lengths are needed to keep the stones staggered and keeping away from uniform lengths.
The best stone to use by far is a flat sandstone. This rock is both durable, easy to work with, and has a flat surface needed for the stacking process. You should also consider drainage. Sandstone is a nice, porous stone that will enhance drainage allowing for water to be taken away from the wall.
Prefabricated Dressed Stone
Depending on the purpose of your stacked stone wall, you might want to look into some dressed stone. This type of stone has some manufacturing to it and is mostly used in more formal looking walls. A retaining wall along a driveway, or used to dress up a pool area can be done with dressed stone.
When building a stacked stone wall near a water feature, such as a waterfall, a hard stone is going to be necessary. It will handle the load of the extra water weight, plus stand up to the freezing and thawing. Softer, more brittle stone will begin to crack, chip, and eventually fail when near a lot of water.
Keep Things Flat
The whole process of building a stacked stone wall is built around the principle that it will stand for years to come. This happens when the stones that you are using are flat on both the top and the bottom. Smoothness is not as important as just being flat. In fact, irregularities along the top and bottom will allow the use of small crushed stone to act as a way to bond the upper and lower course together.
Stay away from Round Field Stone
While you can use a round stone that is commonly found in stones and gravel pits, you will want to pass them by for your stacked stone wall. They are much harder to stack and, because of the irregular patterns, much less stable.