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Retaining Walls

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05/28/2023 8:09:26 AM

Retaining Wall Construction

Do you own a yard with a significant slope? Are you worried that your yard will erode within the next few years? Contact us at Johnson’s Landscaping Service to get a retaining wall to keep your yard in place! We will make sure to integrate the retaining wall into your landscape.

Retaining walls can be a great addition to any yard space due to the multiple functions they can perform. As sturdy structures, these walls keep soil, rock, and water in place. Although retaining walls are initially installed to prevent erosion, water damage, and seepage, they can also be used for decoration. You can get creative with their aesthetics! Your retaining wall has the potential to add not only functionality to your yard, but also beauty! What are some ways to make a retaining wall aesthetically pleasing? Try using it as a garden space, a tool to create focal points, a bench, a way to transform your yard.

Backyard patio area with seating area, stone decorative wall, and shrubbery

“We Love It!”

Johnson’s Landscaping recently completed a major overhaul of our backyard, including building a retaining wall, regrading, and installing a large paver patio. We love it. The owners were really responsive to our concerns and went above and beyond to meet our expectations. They stand by their reputation and earned our trust. We recommend them highly.
– Lisa P.

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Uses for Retaining Walls

1. Use it as a Gardening Space

Make use of your sloped yard! With a retaining wall, you get extra space that can be used as garden placement, especially if your wall faces the sun. Take advantage of this space to create beautiful, unique flowerbeds that will enhance your yard space. Plants can hide harsh features of certain retaining walls to allow it to blend in with the rest of your yard. You can use the space in front of the wall or even on top of it by adding railroad ties or treated lumber posts. Plant beds and flowerbeds can be added on top of the wall. If it has a flat top, you can sit some containers full of cucumber, zucchini, or even watermelon on it and let the vines cascade naturally over the side of the wall. Tomatoes, corn, and beans are also great vegetables you can start growing!

Other features to include are shrubs or flower bushes (to add some more color), or even hanging baskets full of plants, such as begonias or sweet peas, by simply adding some rods to the retaining wall. Installing a trellis for plant climbing roses or ivy to grow over it is another beautiful idea! The plants can also be placed all over the wall, not just on top of it, to create a garden wall! You can be incredibly creative with this idea as well because of its vast decorative potential. Instead of capping the retaining wall normally, you have the option of topping it with hollow blocks that can be used to grow plants.

Tall stone retaining wall with greenery
Steps & Walls

2. Create Focal Points

Retaining walls can also make your yard stand out and contribute to its contrast! For example, you can choose to paint your wall and make it a focal point if you are artistic. On the other hand, you can cover it with stucco to make it blend in with your yard a bit more. Either way, let your retaining wall highlight the best parts of your yard! The retaining wall can draw a visitor’s eyes to specific areas of the landscaping that you want to highlight. This gives you the opportunity to define focal points in your yard. For instance, as previously mentioned, creating a garden wall can make your yard focus more on colors and plants. Another example is taking advantage of the retaining wall’s shade. If it is well placed, imagine building a patio at the bottom of the retaining wall to create a cozy outdoor dining space. It could even be used to create a romantic atmosphere for dining and drinks!

“The masons who did the stonework were true craftsmen.”

We had a fabulous experience with Johnson’s Landscaping. They did extensive landscaping, built a retaining wall and patio, and re-built a paved walkway. Jamie Newell, the landscape designer was terrific, always available to us and willing to listen to our concerns, even after the project was half way completed. The masons who did the stonework were true craftsmen. I would definitely recommend Johnson’s.
– Ann A.

3. Convert it Into a Bench

If you choose to get a low retaining wall installed, it will not only cost you less, but also double in its function. A wall can also serve as a bench! All you have to do is request a capped wall. Capping a retaining wall creates a more aesthetically pleasing wall because of the two-inch overhanging lips on either side. This creates a comfortable sitting area. We can also make the bench out of any material you like to make sure it is enjoyable to sit on and safe for your clothing and skin!

Walls, Path, & Plantings
Stone retaining wall in sloped yard in front of house

4. Create a High Foundation Illusion

Do you ever get worried that your home looks like a sitting duck perched on top of a hill? If you live in a house built on a high foundation, the decorative possibilities of a retaining wall can be used to your advantage. Get a retaining wall that stretches along the line of the downward slope to create the illusion that your house in constructed lower than it actually is.

At Johnson’s Landscaping Service, we have countless ideas that will help you turn an ordinary concrete wall into a feature that you will be proud to show off to guests. Whether it be through the use of plants, design placement, doubling its function, or water, we can help you turn your retaining wall into an asset that will transform your yard for the best! For more information on our landscaping services, you can contact us for an initial consultation.

“We will certainly use them for a variety of other lawn issues that we have in mind”

We were exceeding pleased with the work that Johnson’s performed for us – a new driveway, walkway, garden wall and filling in an unused in ground pool. We also worked with Joe Stark he and the entire work staff were extremely professional, attentive to our ideas and a source of excellent advice. We will certainly use them for a variety of other lawn issues that we have in mind.
– Dave D.

The 5-Step Retaining Wall System

We give you the retaining wall your yard needs through our innovative process.


First, we find a time to have a phone call! We want to make sure we have an accurate feel for what you are looking for. We discuss various aspects about the retaining wall you need, such as how bad your erosion problem is and if you have any other plans for using the wall.

Couple meeting with Landscaper
Drawing of landscaping plan


Next up we want to make sure we make sure your wall’s goals match the requirements of your landscape. A member of our design team visits the site for free! While the landscape designer scopes out the scene, they dig deep into your ideas and offer suggestions so that your retaining wall is perfect!


After the planning visit, your personal landscape designer creates a scope of work proposal. Their estimate includes materials and labor. Collecting your feedback on the retaining wall plans is critical. In this step, we create a detailed drawing of your new retaining wall. This forms the basis for your contract.

Woman and man discussing landscaping project
Main installing landscape pavers


A finished contract means we can schedule the work and get started. Our teams know precisely what you need because of our detailed planning process.


After your brand new retaining wall is installed, we review the project to make sure you are happy. The work does not end after the installation. We will recommend a maintenance program so that your retaining wall continues to protect your property for years to come.

When you have decided to make your dream a reality, contact Johnson’s Landscaping Service to speak to our design team. We want to be with you every step of the way!

man trimming hedges
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Our Locations

7201 Brookville Road
Chevy Chase, MD 20815


5011 Olney-Laytonsville Road
Olney, MD 20832