The owners of this new Harbor Springs home came to North By Nature Landscapes with several challenges around the steep slope to the right of their elegant front door:

  • stabilizing the surface in front of the entryway,
  • allowing for access to a water spigot located on the side of the stone column and
  • creating a path down the steep slope to their lower-level patio and yard.



(A closer look at the surface to be stabilized and the spigot, above.)


Our designer suggested using natural limestone outcroppings and flagstone to complement the color and texture of the beautiful stonework on the house. First, we retained the earth at the entryway level with this dry-stacked wall. The outcroppings were stacked, without the use of mortar, on a compacted base of crushed stone to assure good drainage. One course of outcroppings are buried to provide the mass needed to retain the slope.



Next, we created this flagstone extension of the poured concrete sidewalk to further stabilize the area and keep everything neat.



A photo showing a steep slope descending next to a new home. North By Nature Landscapes designed and installed a retaining wall and stairs which provide access from the front entry to the lower level patio and yard.

Then, we installed snapped limestone steps down the hill. Note the large outcropping stones set in the garden between the house and the stairs. These help to stabilize the slope and provide access both to the spigot and for maintaining the new garden.

Finally, we began plantings on the reshaped slopes on either side of the stairs.

Handsome, huh?