Retaining Walls – Landscaping That Won’t Harm Your Retaining Wall

bay area retaining walls landscaping

Retaining walls can be integrated into your landscape design in the Bay Area, or they can appear as an afterthought. When plants and trees live in harmony with the hardscape elements in your yard, it enhances the aesthetics of your property and protects your investment.

Why Install Retaining Walls?

Retaining walls prevent erosion by providing support for dirt. This structure gives you more usable land, especially when your property isn’t level. A retaining wall also helps manage water runoff. A properly designed retaining wall must be engineered to hold back the pressure of the soil. Landscape designs that include retaining walls are both beautiful and functional. Using the right shrubs, trees and plants near retaining walls keeps the wall from being damaged by growth.

Established Trees and Retaining Walls.

If you’re building a retaining wall near established trees, you may need to build the wall past the roots instead of cutting the roots. Pruning the roots can affect a tree’s stability, which could put your yard and home at risk of damage. Many types of trees have aggressive root systems. Small trees that don’t have an extensive root system may eventually damage the retaining wall. If you do think you need to remove the tree or cut back the roots, use a professional arborist who can help you do the least damage to the tree.

Retaining Walls Landscaping Planting New Trees and Shrubs

Ideally, trees should be planted far away from retaining walls. The roots of trees never stop growing. Tree roots push up sidewalk, drill through pipes and compromise landscape design. Trees need room to breathe. Take the tree’s mature height and plant it that far away from retaining wall landscaping areas.

Trees and plants can soften the space around the wall, so it’s natural to want to plant shrubs and bushes around the retaining wall. When installing new trees, look for slow-growing trees without aggressive roots. Small, flowering trees, such as the redbud or saucer magnolia, can do well near a retaining wall. The Amur maple or golden rain tree are smaller options that do well in yards with retaining walls. Crape myrtles grow slow, another good trait to look for when placing trees near retaining walls in landscaping.

Plant near the retaining wall, rather than on top of it. Check with your landscape company for native plants that will grow better in the soil and help prevent erosion. Evergreen trees can almost hide a retaining wall, but larger trees tend to grow aggressively, which will damage the retaining wall. Smaller evergreens, such as the American holly, is vibrant during the summer and produces red berries for a natural winter decoration.

Contact one of the premier landscape companies in the Bay Area for landscape design that looks great and stands up to the Bay Area elements.