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sod retaining wall

 
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hello, new member, first time posting, but I have been shadowing for a while now.
so I have a city house and am trying to make the most of the land I do have...

I have an idea that I am looking for advice on.
I have sloped back yard that I would like to level off to make more of a play space for my nephews.
I want to make a native bee/butterfly garden in the front. to help with pollination of my fruit trees, berries and garden.  I did not know it was call permaculture I was thinking of it as "edible landscaping".  put in perennials trees and suchlike that won't need massive amounts of work to supplement the family diet.
but I digress... in the course of some of my landscaping I have pulled up the yard sod.. and it's about 3-4 in thick.. I was thinking that I could use this build my retaining wall in the back... I know stacked sod can be used to build with sod houses and such like.
the retaining wall is short 2 feet or so.  any ideas on how to keep the sod from falling over when stacked? props on the back side? or staked?  has anyone build with sod?  any advice would be great.
thank you all
 
pollinator
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Aleyn Younger wrote:
the retaining wall is short 2 feet or so.  any ideas on how to keep the sod from falling over when stacked? props on the back side? or staked?  has anyone build with sod?  any advice would be great.
thank you all



If you are only going to go two feet high, I think I would stack it like a pyramid on the downhill side and more upright on the uphill side.  Maybe make the bottom row 2 feet wide, and each row after that the same width, but moved toward the uphill side a couple inches.  On the uphill side, each higher row would stick over the row beneath by that couple inches and sag a little, holding each higher row to the one beneath it.  Something like this terrible picture:
sod.png
[Thumbnail for sod.png]
 
pollinator
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Be aware that soil slides down slopes.
Also a 2ft high wall has a fair amount of pressure behind it, so it will always try to slide or fall over.
If I was doing it I would build a proper retaining wall, either rock, steel posts in concrete and timber
or something stacked with broken concrete paths etc.
It will need drainae holes to ensure water does not build behind it
 
Trace Oswald
pollinator
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John C Daley wrote:Be aware that soil slides down slopes.
Also a 2ft high wall has a fair amount of pressure behind it, so it will always try to slide or fall over.
If I was doing it I would build a proper retaining wall, either rock, steel posts in concrete and timber
or something stacked with broken concrete paths etc.
It will need drainae holes to ensure water does not build behind it



I agree with you, but it's entirely dependent on the amount of slope.  My land has a very slight slope, so I just laid branches in a pile along the bottom edge and left it.  All the leaves, soil, dead plants, etc. washed down there, or were moved by the wind, and leveled the area without me doing anything.  A 2 foot wall may have a tremendous amount of pressure, or almost none.
 
steward
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I had a relatively steep side slope on a rarely traveled area by my barn.  I wanted to level it out a bit so any time we had extra sod from a project, we'd just lay it on the downhill side of the "road".  Over the years we've added about 3 thicknesses of sod at the downhill side.  I'm quite surprised at how well it is maintaining a steep edge.  I suspect it helped to do only one layer per year so the new roots would knit through the soil below.  We've probably added a foot of material at the thickest part of the "earthworks".  For reference, the black rectangles are a vehicle's tires.
Sod-to-build-up-a-rarely-used-road.png
Sod to build up a rarely used road
Sod to build up a rarely used road
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