a concrete block retaining wall
Photo: Mark Turner
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Wall Materials: Interlocking Concrete Blocks

An easy choice for DIYers because of their light weight, flat sides, and the foolproof way they fit together without mortar. These blocks, sold at stone yards and home centers, have a rough face for a quarried look and come in a variety of gray, tan, and red hues. Like timber and dry-stacked stone walls, they rest on a crushed-stone footing. Heavy-duty mesh anchors every other course against the ground.

Cost: Versa-lok Weathered Mosaic (shown), $11.40 per square foot uninstalled; Versa-Lok
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