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A dry stone wall in Sunnyside & in client's backyard

A Dry Stone Wall from Inspiration to Landscaping

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It was a still, grey day. The clouds were hanging low, water dripped from the eaves, and fog lingered around us. The grounds were empty, almost with no visitors.

The mood was perfect for visiting the home of the author, who wrote the Halloween classic "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow."




A Curving Dry Stone Wall in Sunnyside

We walked along the paths around the empty property, from woodland to open meadows. There were pumpkins, decorations, and some reminiscence from the event of the previous night.

There were secret paths in a silent forest, a gorgeous view of the mighty Hudson River, an eccentric home of the author, and Halloween decorations.

One thing that caught my eye was the curving dry stack stone wall along the entryway to the house. Dry stone walls are gorgeous and often very functional landscape elements, even in a smaller setting.



What Is a Dry Stack Stone Wall?

Dry stack stone walls are made of quarried stone, and they are built without mortar. The rocks are just stacked one on top of the other. That takes skillful craft, and if you do it yourself, lots of time. However, it's possible. The higher the wall, the more patience it takes as the stones are irregular, and you need to find a perfect place for each of them to build a steady wall.

I have designed dry-stack stone walls for several of my client's gardens. As a material, I have used either granite or slate.


How to Place a Dry Stone Wall

The inspiration for using a dry stone wall in this specific property on a steep slope came from the Sunnyside and  other charming places with a natural feel.

The backyard was almost on the top of the hill, but the neighbor's entryway was on slightly higher ground. The ground sloped from the driveway before shifting to open bedrock on my client's property. There were exposed bedrock and characterful pine trees on the site.

The family wanted some privacy screen planting beside the borderline. It would be a perfect solution to terrace the area with a dry retaining stone wall to get more soil for planting and make the height difference between sites less prominent. The dry stack stone wall was a perfect landscape element for this purpose.

The dry stone wall and yard renovation was constructed by landscaping company Saarnivaahtera.



Where to Use a Dry Stack Stone Wall

The existing combination of a site with natural beauty and a modern house was very successful. It allowed for highlighting the site's wilderness by using local raw materials and coniferous plants combined with low-growing shrubs and mat-forming herbaceous perennials.

The dry stone wall has a marvelous texture and color, and it can be a very beneficial element in terracing the ground in slight slopes and giving a crisp form for natural-looking yards where needed. And it has this incredible natural feel to it.



Building A Dry Stone Wall Is a Sustainable Choice

Recycling existing materials is a sustainable choice. There are often excess stones on new building sites if there has been a need to quarry bedrock to make room for the house's foundations.

Using the quarried stones is a win-win situation. The stone material is true to the surrounding nature, and recycling it on-site, saves money and resources. And a dry stack stone wall might even become your favorite landscape feature, which you'll admire for many years to come.




PS. Learn more about suitable landscape features for your style and yard by taking my Garden Design Style Quiz. Then download the FREE guide the get clear guidelines for choosing the right landscape material, features, and plants for your backyard. >> Click HERE to take the quiz.<<




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