Down to a science
Retaining walls can be built for either aesthetic or structural reasons. These wall systems are flexible in terms of design and require fairly minimal embedment below grade (approx. 6 inches)
The process involves digging a trench to the approximate shape of the desired wall. The trench is filled with appropriate granular base then machine compacted several times. Almost without exception it is necessary to do considerable cutting of stones to do a proper job.
For most walls the height should be kept below 3 feet. It is of course possible to go higher, but a different choice of stone such as Quarry stone or Pisa stone would be required with a change in base material and requirement.
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