Do you have heaps of rocks on your property or around your area? Did you know that you could use those rocks to build garden walls and fences — without using concrete? This type of fencing is actually better than concrete walls in a number of ways. They are called Gabions — wire cages or baskets filled with rocks used in road building and military applications.
Gabion, derived from the old Italian word “gabbione”, meaning “big cage,” builders fashioned the earliest gabions from wicker. Now they are usually a welded mesh of sturdy galvanized, coated, or stainless steel wire.
What are the advantages of Gabion-Rock Walls?
More and more people are using gabions to fence their yards these days. It is a great complement to modern homes and people love it with the various designs you could create using different rock colors.
Contrary to how it looks, these walls are strong structures and offer many advantages. The first is that gabions are inherently flexible, allowing for some soil movement in the area. Instead of breaking, as is with concrete structures, they simply deform. This is why they are used as protection against slope erosion.
The second advantage of gabion walls is their strength. The wire mesh is not simply a container for these rocks, but they also reinforce the entire wall. Installing internal windlass braces inside prevents too much movement of rocks inside, keeping the structure together. These also take on their full load as soon as you are done building them. Unlike in concrete projects, you wouldn’t have to wait a certain period of time before you could rely on the strength of this type of wall.
These walls are cheaper than concrete projects since wire mesh is one of the cheapest among all construction supplies. You can even collect stones if there are some in your area to reduce costs. If you don’t have rocks, there are alternatives such as bricks and other construction materials.
Building this type of wall is easier since it is virtually assembling the gabion basket properly and filling it with rocks. It doesn’t require the use of any mechanical equipment, so you can definitely DIY this building project.
There are several assembly kits you can buy online. If you want to have this in your outdoor area, just make sure to research well on how to DIY this great outdoor project.
What are the best types of rocks we can use as a gabion rock wall?
These are a few types of rocks that we can use as gabion rock walls. Decorate all you want, just keep in mind to consider how big your rocks will be, to ensure the measurement of spaces or gaps between the wires. Smaller rocks require tighter cages than larger rocks.
- White rocks
- Large rocks
- Small rocks
- Colourful rocks
- Crushed granite
What are the materials needed to build a DIY gabion rock wall?
See how some built a rock wall in their yard below!
Would you want to build a unique fence for your home?
You’ll need these materials:
- Weldmesh Sheets/Steel Mesh/Cattle Panel
- Lacing Wire/Rebar Ties
- Helical Connectors/Spiral Wires
- Work Gloves
- Safety Glasses
And these tools:
- Measuring Tape
How to build a DIY gabion rock wall?
1. Find and mark the place you desire to have your gabion rock wall
These can be places with downward slopes, can also be placed in the garden, set as barriers or sidewalls, etc.
2. Select the type of wire fence you need
Wire fence type will be based on the size of your rocks and your required size of fence or wall. The larger the rocks and wall size, the bigger capacity your wire fence should be. For example, a barrier needs a steel wire fence cage, while a garden decor can only use a VC (vinyl-coated welded or woven).
3. Make a wire fence cage
Simply cut the wires or steels according to your preferred size, then form a cage. Enclose all sides using the wire or connectors.
4. Install the wire fence cage
Do not cover the subsoil. Remove the weeds, grass and other organic material. Bury the wire fence cage as deep as you can into the hard subsoil. Now you’re ready to install the fence. Close the bottom and sides, and leave the top open.
5. Completing the gabions.
Carefully drop the rocks from the top of the wire fence. You can arrange this by colour or by size.
6. Enclose the top.
Close the top of the wire fence cage. Now you have a very attractive gabion rock wall.
Barricades, fences and walls of all types can be made from gabion. This includes residential barriers, standard fences, and playground fences. Check this out for more ideas on gabion designs.
Below are collections of gabion-rock wall ideas.
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