Build a stone wall

Build a stone wall
(Jorge Salcedo/Shutterstock)

You can’t add a more enduring landscape feature to a home than a stone wall, which you’ll see dotting the countryside of many homes in rural areas. A rugged stone wall creates a natural material surrounding property that’s appealing whether it’s a modest cottage or a handsome country estate, often becoming the focal point of the property.

We’ve noticed that as stone walls become more popular, landscape and garden centers are offering more stone materials to choose from. While some stone walls are built wet with mortar to secure them together, a dry-stacked wall without mortar is a more attainable goal for a do-it-yourselfer.

Building a stone wall is not a one-and-done job. It takes time and involves considerable strength and stamina, so consider planning the project over a period of time. The job involves several phases: laying out the location for the wall, digging a trench, and setting the foundation stones. Then the “puzzle” phase begins and takes time because it involves creating the wall with different sizes and shapes of stones that fit together in a stable arrangement. Also, allow considerable time to pick and choose (and move) the stones to the fence location. If you want to make it fanciful, leave some empty spaces between the stones, and tuck in colorful flowering plants or a low-growing ground cover.

A landscaper will charge $2,350, including labor and material, to build a 30-foot-long, 3-foot-high dry-stacked stone wall. You can build it yourself for $1,550, the cost of the stones, and save 34%. To build a stacked stone wall, you’ll need a carpenter’s level, tape measure, shovel and a wheelbarrow to move the stones.

To find more DIY project costs and to post comments and questions, visit

Pro Cost — DIY Cost — Pro time — DIY Time — DIY Savings — Percent Saved

$2,350 — $1,550 — 31.3 — 50.0 — $800 — 34%

©2022 Gene and Katie Hamilton. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
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