Using a gabion in a landscape is a surprisingly versatile tool to provide a useful structure that can be beautiful as well. With a variety of ways of filling and using this customizable wall, one of these 6 ways might be just the inspiration to use a gabion system in your hardscaping construction plans.
Filling a gabion with crushed rocks is the traditional method but adding in a different color or texture of stone can make this otherwise basic appearing wall really pop. Using a contrasting stone, or even a brightly colored rock, as a striped layer creates interest with the unexpected modern twist to a typically gray toned wall.
2. Accent the Negative Space
Gabion baskets are made to be filled, but that doesn’t mean they have to. Create a visually less heavy look by only filling every other gabion with crushed stone or rock instead of completely filling all of the baskets. As an unexpected variation, this airy look is perfect when structure and delineation is needed but not total privacy.
3. Alternate Gabions with Wood Fencing
Another stunning alternative to structures made completely with filled gabions is to alternate wooden fencing horizontally between gabion panels. Using darker wood with warm tones of crushed stone creates a monochromatic look but choosing wood and stone with high contrast can be equally as striking in a hardscape design. Yet another option in this adaptable concept for gabion use in hardscaping plans is to utilize a light color scheme with whites and light grey tones, creating a more modern aesthetic that works with everything from rustic to industrial modern, to everything in between.
4. Dramatic Oversized Rock
Instead of using smaller crushed rocks, opt for larger, more standardized rocks in round or square shapes. The oversized filling of the gabion will create more of a stone wall effect, creating the perfect backdrop for creeping ivies or flowers reminiscent of ancient stone walls. These larger stones can be used throughout the entire wall or used as accents at passageways or as small accent areas on a more traditionally filled gabion wall.
5. Gabion Wall as a Base
These multi-functioning walls can be used in other ways than a stand-alone wall. They can effectively and beautifully create a base for another type of fencing or materials to create a visually interesting and substantial structure. Using a low, stone-filled gabion wall as a base, a wrought-iron or wooden fence above adds up to a generously sized barrier. With the ability to create this lower wall at any height, creating an enclosed area with a gabion base is flexible and can be adapted to many different enclosure needs.
6. Create a Beautiful Water or Fire Feature
Not just relegated to walls, gabions are strong structure bases that can be used as the outer structure of a small water feature or even a fire pit or fireplace. With versatility in stone fill size and malleability of the outer structure shape, gabions can be the basis for stunning yet practical additions to a hardscape plan. Inserting a water fountain kit and liner or fitting the inside with heat-resistant brick or stone turns the humble gabion into a hardscape centerpiece.