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Faux Rock Wall

Inspired by places like Disneyland and the local aquarium,
I had wanted to build a faux rock structure for a long time.

Faux rock wall getting started
foundation

The basic material for the structure is recycled concrete slabs, in this case from my neighbor's front walk. I busted these up with a sledge into manageable chunks.

I started by pouring a footer of concrete and re-bar about six inches thick, and laid the first course of broken concrete. Then I laid up the broken concrete with mortar like block.

The footer sticks out in front of the wall about ten inches so that when I drive the mower past the wall, I won't need to use a trimmer afterwards. The other reason is to project the force vector forward about twenty degrees, which makes for a strong retaining wall.

If I'd used landscaping block or other commercial product from a builder supply store, the result would have come out too regular looking. The broken concrete was mostly uniform in thickness, but irregular in shape, which made for a more natural looking wall.

Steps

Standing out in the yard away from the wall, these steps are nearly invisible.

Stucco scratch coat

Here I'm starting the scratch coat of stucco on the steps.

Starting the color coat of stucco

This is about as far as I got before I injured my shoulder in October having fun in the back country. Work didn't resume until the following summer.

Project on hold for the winter
This is how I left it for the winter.

Finally, with the wall complete the next summer, backfill and grading could begin.
Finish grading
I've helped out the sod farm next door with some small machining jobs, and it paid off in free turf.
 
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