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Following lots of renovations we have keenly had a fence erected along the back of our garden to stop the world being able to look into our house. There is a patio and then a strip of soil about 8m wide and 2.5 metres deep where I plan to have a patch of grass/wild flowers.....mostly for my dog......don't judge me!! However now the fence is up I can see the ground slopes down towards the fence. somehow didn't notice it before. So I have ordered gabion baskets and stones and started to dig out a base. They will be 50cm deep, 50cm high and run the width of the fence. My theory being the gabion wall sits in front of the fence retaining the soil so it doesn't rot the fence. I imagine the soil will be back filled up to about half way up the gabion. My questions are can just a soil base take the gabions and will it just sit in front of a fence.....I'm now a bit worried as it is retaining soil it will push back against the fence and I have visions of it bursting out the back of the fence onto a neighbours path! Hope that makes sense, advice really appreciated! 

You should be OK with just a soil base as your gabions are quite small. Anything higher than 1 metre would need a compacted hardcore base. If in doubt ask your gabion supplier what they would recommend, they will have lots more experience than anyone else.

plant pauper

Agree with steephill...ask the man who knows. 

Too late now, but a much cheaper and easier option would have been to put 30 cm concrete gravel boards at the bottom of each fence panel.

Doghouse Riley
KT53 says:

Too late now, but a much cheaper and easier option would have been to put 30 cm concrete gravel boards at the bottom of each fence panel.

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Not a criticism a bit of general information, for anyone about to have fences erected.

Doesn't matter what you do, even with tanilised timber, regardless of the number of "coats  of looking at," the manufacturer gives it, prolonged contact with water will lead to rot.

We've 6ft post and panel fences around our garden. In places the borders  which get over time built up a bit to the back, cover a few inches of the base of the gravel boards.

Also, no planting is attached to the wooden panels, but to strong wire stretched at intervals to big "eyes" drilled into the  concrete posts. So changing damaged  or rotting panels is just a case of slipping them out and installing a new one. Over thirty years, in some places I've done that...twice!

Last edited: 18 July 2017 10:16:21


But as you've now got gabions on the way, standing on soil should be fine, as steephill says, but I'd leave an inch or two gap between them and the fence so any water that comes through the gabions drains down to the ground rather than soaking the bottom panels of the fence. You might want to put a permeable membrane down there before you place the gabions to inhibit the weeds coming up


Ah should have said, already got the concrete gravel boards at the bottom which retains the bottom section of soil, but need to retain above that to get it level still. But thanks for the advice everyone! 

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