The Self Build Self Help Site Landscaping

Coping Stones

The photo shows a wall in preparation to receive coping stones. Battens have been fixed to the top of the wall sides to support the heavy stones, to prevent the cement from being squeezed out too much, and to keep the stones aligned and flush with each other.

This wall is very thick, being part of a retaining wall structure and the coping stones are not wide enough to have the optimum overhang of about 50mm.

Photo of coping stones in preparation


(Click on photo for a larger view)

(Click on photo for a larger view)

Photo of coping stones

Cast coping stones

An option for coping stones is to cast them in situ. This will have the advantage of catering exactly for the width and providing a suitable overhang and drip.


Here the formwork can be seen, in which the copings have been cast. You will need a plasterer who has experience in this - and then the result can be a smooth, pristine finish rivalling that found in mass produced stones.

(click on photo for a larger view)

Photo of coping stones

Photo of coping stones


The formwork has been removed. The process can cater for all sorts of twists and turns of a wall, albeit through an expensive process by the carpenter and plasterer.

(click on photo for a larger view)

The requirement here for a handrail, coupled with a wall 330mm thick plus render, made the casting process the only option. But the result is just beautiful. The plasterer has created joins in the coping - where there was thin ply cross pieces in the cast. These artificial joins should stop the coping cracking elsewhere due to the amount of concrete used.

(click on photo for a larger view)

Photo of coping stones

Chain Fencing

A smart looking way to demarcate one garden from another yet gives an impression of openess. Often obtained in plastic, a metal link can be bought but its harder to find - try a good hardware shop.

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