How to Build a Stone Wall

Apart from being a symbol of security, a stone wall can be used to decorate or beautify an outdoor environment. Stone walls are strong and durable so after you have built it, you can be assured it will withstand any type of pressure for years. This article will give you insight into how to go about making one on your own by just following these instructions

Tools required

  • Shovel
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Backhoe

Materials required

  • Gravel
  • Sones
  • Mortar


  1. Decide where you want to build the stone wall and use chalk or spray paint to outline the area where it will be constructed. Then place two sticks in the ground at both ends of where the wall will start and end at about the same height as the projected stone wall.
  2. Make a selection in the size of the stones; you would like to use to build the wall
  3. Use the string to connect the two sticks at each end from the top. The string will be used as an indicator of the level of the wall.
  4. Proceed to make the foundation for the wall by digging out a trench with the backhoe. The trench should be 1 foot deep for every 4 feet of wall and the width of the trench should be about the same size as the biggest set of stones. When laying the stones, leave about 2 inches of space at the top of the foundation.
  5. Lay the stones in the foundation on top of the gravel, starting with the bigger stones just to test how the stones will fit together when the building begins. Then take them out so you can place mortar on the stones, starting from the ones that go in first.
  6. Mix the mortar in the wheelbarrow. Make the mix consistent so it slides easily off the trowel.
  7. Start laying the wall by putting some of the mortar onto the gravel in the trench and setting the stones. Make certain that it is placed properly onto the gravel so it fits tight and properly. Place the stones from the bottom level up using the mortar in between, from end to end keeping it set. Use the level to ensure that all the stones are laid straight.
  8. Keep the joints of the stones staggered to add more strength to the structure of the stone wall. Staggered joints also make the wall look more appealing.
  9. Place some more of the large stones at the top level of the wall, and then clean the surplus mortar from the sides and cracks. Remove the large clusters of mortar and brush the surface to give it a clean look. All this should be done before the mortar completely sets.

Tips and Warnings

  • A lot of people use ready mix as their mortar when making a stone wall, this may be cheaper and takes less time to use.
  • Try to have all the right clothing for the job. Wear the proper gloves and shoes because building a stone wall can become messy, especially when mortaring and setting stones.
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