Q&A - Retaining Wall

Thought I'd share my answer to a recent query.

Q: I live in Connecticut and we have no shortage of stone to work with. I am starting to build a retaining wall that will be about 54" tall, I have a good base and have a couple of questions that maybe if you have time you could help me with. I know to have batter on the front side of the wall, my question is the earth side, do I make the earth side parallel to the front, batter towards the front, like a free standing wall, or some books I have read suggest that the bottom third be built like a free standing wall and then the rest is parallel to the front. I plan on using some tie stones to anchor the wall to the earth it retains. I plan on the base course being level and having plenty 1:5, or 1:6 batter, am I on the right track?

A:The profile of the retaining walls I build tend to have a 1:6 batter on the face and 1:4 on the back. The back face is nothing beautiful but it is built with the same principles that are applied to the front. On a 54" tall wall the base might be 3.5' wide and the top 1.5' wide.

Have fun building.