How To Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope?

A stone retaining wall build around a tree on a slope provides depth and character to the landscape while giving the yard a uniform look.

Almost any type of field stone or premade pavers can be used to build a retaining wall around a tree.

Pavers or flat stones are significantly easier to work because of their more consistent shape.

Although it is possible to construct a wood retaining wall, a stone wall is more addressed now since stone is less prone to decay.

In contrast to paver edging, a wall surrounding a tree aid in supporting the soil and safeguarding the tree.

9 Steps to Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree:

Step 1- Measure the distance to the tree:

Measure the distance to the tree

To a large nail, tie a piece of string as long as the wall is needed from the base of the tree.

Pull the nail and use it to ensure that the wall is erected at the proper distance from the tree’s trunk.

Step 2- Excavate a level ring:

Excavate a level ring

Dig a circle with a diameter of three to six feet around your tree, the ring should be 4 to 6 inches deep if the ground is already substantially level.

If you are excavating on a slope, dig to a depth that surrounds the level of the circle.

Check that the ring is big enough to hold your pavers or stones.

Step 3- Add gravel to the base:

 Add gravel to the base

Add pea gravel to the base of the ring, about 1 inch deep.

To compact the gravel, use a construction compactor or a piece of 4×4 wood.

Step 4- Set the first row of pebbles in place:

Set the first row of pebbles in place

To properly align your stones, place them in a ring on top of the gravel.

Make sure it is straight and stable using a carpenter’s level to build a retaining wall around the tree.

Step 5- Mix the cement:

Mix the cement

As directed by the manufacturer, combine your masonry cement with water in a bucket.

Step 6- Apply cement:

Apply cement: How To Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope

Apply a thin layer of cement over the first layer of rocks using a putty knife or offset spatula.

Step 7- Include a further stone layer:

Include a further stone layer: How To Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope

After the initial layer of stones, add the subsequent layer.

To prevent the joints from lining up, the second layer’s joints should cross the first layer in the middle.

Step 8- Tie at the appropriate height:

Tie at the appropriate height: How To Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope

Endure layering in this way until the wall is the right height.

If you are constructing on a slope, leave at least one foot between the slope and the top layer of stone.

Step 9- Cure, then backfill:

Cure, then backfill: How To Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope

After letting the wall dry and cure by the cement manufacturer’s instructions, topsoil or compost should be used to cover the ring.

To spice up your yard and make use of extra planting areas, plant annuals or perennials in rings.

Also read: How to Build a Railroad Tie Retaining Wall?

FAQ- How to Build a Retaining Wall Around a Tree on a Slope:

Q1. What to do with tree roots when building a retaining wall?

It would be better if you kept the two of them as far apart as possible.

However, if you don’t have enough space for your landscaping, make sure to place the retaining wall far enough away so that the roots are not damaged in any way.

In the ideal situation, you wouldn’t want to sever, break, or prune your tree’s roots.

Q2. How should I utilize landscape timbers on sloped land?

You should terrace the hillside with trenches that will accommodate and stabilize the boards if you wish to utilize landscaping wood on the sloped property.

Similar to baseboard trim in your home, wood edging requires the lumber to be fitted together at an angle to create corners.

Q3. Can I surround a tree with a retaining wall?

Is it possible to construct a retaining wall over or around tree roots?

While you cannot place stones or concrete on plants with established roots, you can enclose your plant with a well-thought-out enclosure.

Also read: How to Build a Concrete Retaining Wall?


Planters made of wall bricks and placed around the tree can fill some space under the tree and provide space for plants or flowers.

Since they are designed for walls, bricks make an excellent planter border and hold the soil fairly effectively.

When everything is done, add whatever you choose to keep the larger plants so they don’t get in the way of the smaller plants.

Section Under: Retaining Walls

Hello and welcome to House Modify! I am Rahul and I am passionate about everything related to design, decoration and renovation. I am a serial renovator, currently working as a civil engineer. Take a look around, leave a comment and don't forget to subscribe to my emails so you don't miss out!

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