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How to Build a Rock Wall With Cement

Updated February 21, 2017

A rock wall can be a long-lasting, distinctive addition to any garden or yard. Though it can be hard work, building a rock wall is well worth the effort whether it will be used as a retaining wall, foundation or garden fence. Dry stacking with no mortar is the quickest method to build a rock wall, but it won't last. For an enduring wall, build it with cement mortar. A stone jutting out or a bit of a crook only adds to the rustic appeal.

Put the stakes in the ground at the beginning and end points of the wall, and tie the string tautly between them. Dig a straight-sided trench along the string line the width of the wall. Use the level to keep the footing even.

Cut the chicken wire into strips the width of the trench, and lay it in the bottom of the trench.

Mix some concrete in the wheelbarrow, and pour it into the trench, about 4 inches in depth

Place the first layer of rocks on the concrete, using the trowel to apply a 2-inch layer of cement between the rocks. Use the largest, flattest rocks you have to provide a stable base.

Continue to add layers, being sure to stagger the joints, and keep the wall level as the height increases.

Make the top layer using flat rocks that are level with one another. Use less or more concrete in order to keep them level.

Tip

If you have broken chunks of concrete or bricks, they can be interspersed in the wall. Use extra cement and smaller rocks to fill in spaces caused by the rocks' irregularities. Make the width of the wall about 1/3 of the height for strength. Mix the cement in amounts that can be used before it sets up.

Warning

Concrete dust can irritate the skin, and it is harmful to your eyes and lungs. Wet concrete can cause concrete burns after prolonged contact. Wear appropriate safety gear.

Things You'll Need

  • String
  • Wooden stakes
  • Shovel
  • Level
  • Chicken wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Premixed cement
  • Rocks
  • Cement trowel
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About the Author

Born and raised in Iowa, Thomas Jasper began writing for various websites in 2010. Jasper enjoys writing about multiple subjects and researching these subjects in order to provide the best information available.