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Complete Guide to Retaining Walls

Posted on 31 Jan 2024

Thinking of starting an outdoor home renovation? A retaining wall might be part of the solution!

Why build a retaining wall?

There are many benefits and uses for retaining walls within your outdoor area.

Make your outdoor area level

If you have a sloping block, building a retaining wall can allow you to make your outdoor area level and maximise usable space.

Create different levels

If you have a small area, building up is a great way to add more dimension and layers to your garden.

Define your areas

Retaining walls are the perfect option to use when creating different areas of your outdoor area. These walls can be built to your desired height, and they help to keep sections of your garden separate.

Added privacy

Sometimes you might want to add more privacy, or you want a more closed in space. Whatever look you want to create, retaining walls can help you achieve it.

Improve the look of your yard

Retaining walls can be a great way to enhance the look of your garden. Depending on the type of block you have, they can help create more of a featured space, or they can be designed to make a more subtle addition.

Outdoor stairs

If you have a sloped block, using retaining wall blocks as a staircase can make it much easier and safer to walk around your outdoor area. As these blocks are designed for outdoor use, you don't need to worry about them being exposed to the elements and becoming unsafe.

Prevent soil erosion

Soil erosion is when your soil will shift over time, due to factors like flooding or having a sloping garden. To prevent this becoming a bigger issue, building a retaining wall can help to keep your soil in place as it acts as a boundary.

Improve flood control

Some areas in Australia are more prone to flooding than others, and if that's where you live, it's good to take precautions and put some flood barriers into place.

One way to help reduce the amount of flooding in your property is by using retaining walls. Wherever the ground slopes down and water can flood, that's a good place to have retaining blocks.

Main types of retaining walls


With a textured rugged look, Gardenwall lets you create curved walls, steps, terraces and raised garden beds. No need for mortar or concrete footings, and no bricklaying skills are required to create the garden of your dreams.

Explore Gardenwall blocks.


Versaloc is a new Dry Stack walling system designed to speed up building time by allowing the units to be stacked together without the use of mortar once the first course is laid.

Each unit has interlocking tongue and groove joints and self-locating top lugs to ensure that the finished result is a clean wall that's ready for paint, render or clear sealing.

View our Versaloc blocks.


Midland Brick stone blocks are available in a range of sizes and textures perfect for retaining walls,screen walls and landscaping projects.

For further information on choosing the right product for your project, contact our friendly team.

View our Limestone Blocks

What you need to know before starting the build

Check with your local council

Talking to your local council is an important part of the process as your retaining walls need to meet maximum height restrictions. Knowing what your limits are before buying your blocks can save you a lot of time and money.

Work out how many blocks you'll need

To calculate how many blocks you'll need, first you need to know what the length of the wall is going to be. Remember to consider how high you want the wall to be, taking into consideration what your local council's restrictions are.

Building your retaining wall

What tools you'll need for the job

  • Protective gloves

  • Eye protection (such as goggles)

  • Foot protection (like steel cap boots)

  • A shovel

  • A spirit level

  • Drainage material (such as gravel or blue metal)

  • Stakes & string

  • An agricultural drain (like 100mm subsoil pipe)

  • A wheelbarrow

  • Coarse sand for the levelling pad

  • A hammer

  • A small broom

  • Black builders plastic

Building your retaining wall is a lot more complex than just laying the blocks, and understanding this process will make your finished wall look more professional, last longer, and be much safer. Please contact our friendly team for help and advice.

Can you build a curved retaining wall?

Retaining walls can be built in a rounded shape! Use Gardenwall retaining blocks to create a curved or a straight wall.

Curved retaining walls are perfect for creating things like a seated area or a circular garden bed.

Safe delivery of your retaining blocks

To ensure the safety of everyone involved, we have a number of processes in place for pickups and deliveries of your order.

To find out more about how you can receive your order, visit our website.

View our shipping and delivery requirements.

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