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Gardens and yards come in all shapes, sizes, and grades. Sometimes choosing the perfect look for a location means creating a retaining wall to adjust the grade of a space to make it more usable or simply to add interest in the landscaping plan with a solid surface area. Using creative materials or integrating unique features in a retaining wall can result in a stunning aesthetic for any outdoor space. Made from natural as well as man-made materials, retaining walls are the hard workers in landscapes that not only literally hold up the landscape and plantings but also provide stunning visual appeal anywhere they are utilized. Using a retaining wall might be a choice or the only solution for a landscape location, but using one guarantees the opportunity to add a wow-factor to any landscape. No matter what kind of landscape style you like, here are three of our favorites that work for all kinds of outdoor spaces.

1. Landscape Inside the Retaining Wall

One classic look for a retaining wall is to include a live element in the otherwise hard surface of the wall. For a structure that functions both as a wall and a landscape planting, Bluestone Supply’s plantable blocks are a unique option. Using injected molding for the structure, these eco-friendly blocks are lightweight and stack easily. With multiple color options available, a one-of-a-kind retaining wall can be created with just about any plantings growing in the openings. This type of retaining wall’s plantings can be rotated throughout different planting seasons to provide variety, or the landscape can be embedded with hardy plants or flowers that look good all year long.

2. Natural Wood

Another stunning option is to create a wood retaining wall where a steep grade of landscaping otherwise would prevent landscape plantings. Using simple, wide wooden fencing materials vertically to create a custom height wall can connect perimeter fencing visually to the retaining wall, creating a cohesive landscape feel. Using contrasting wood for crossbeams can change up the aesthetic, as can the use of inexpensive railroad ties for the primary material. Able to blend with just about any style, wooden retaining walls combine just as well with stark modern landscaping as with a more casual look.

3. Stone Tiers

For a look that is customizable for all kinds of landscapes, stacked stone is a gorgeous option when creating a retaining wall. Large flagstone pieces can be layered to create a loose, informal look, while smaller stones can be stacked more tightly for a more formal look to the retaining wall. Color options and combinations can be created to match every landscape style, as well. many stone retaining walls are fashioned as tiers, built as smaller walls with plantable flat green spaces between each retaining wall tier. From undulating curves to perfectly straight sides, stone retaining walls can be fashioned to adjust to landscape challenges like large trees to be retained, or can be used to create new landscaping locations by designing larger or smaller planting tier areas.