Gabion Bench

We haven’t tired of gabions yet; and the oven project gave us confidence to try some other structures. When we needed a small retaining wall at the back of the kitchen patio we decided to build a gabion bench that can do double duty as a wall and a place to sit and enjoy the backyard. It wasn’t hard to build and turned out rather nicely.


Base of gravel and weed fabric.






Caging cut and shaped.

Short lengths of wood stapled to the bottom of the wire help keep things nice and straight.




Partially filled cage with wooden posts to secure the bench top.

As we fill with rocks we wire together the opposing faces of the cage to prevent them from bulging out.



Cages almost completely filled; support structure mounted to the embedded posts.





The cross-supports will hold the actual bench-top boards. All of the wood is cedar, so hopefully it’ll stand up well to the weather.







A coat of bees wax polish completes the job.






Update: here’s what it looks like 2 years later

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10 Responses to Gabion Bench

  1. Emily says:

    What kind of wire material did you use?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Nice job. What about the weed fabric? I am considering double use as bench and retaining wall for a sandy slope. Perhaps the weed fabric could prevent the passage of sand through the gabion during a rain? also, what do you think of embedding the gabion a bit into the ground?

    • I think it would work well as a low retaining wall. It shouldn’t be necessary to embed it in the ground. The gabion depends on the weight and friction between the stones to keep it stable. It’s important to maintain free drainage through the gabion, so water pressure doesn’t build up.

  3. VERY nice! Did you set the wood posts within the rocks only?
    And thank you for posting the updated picture.

    • Yes – the posts just sit on the ground and are wedged in by the rocks. A 2×4 runs across the top, connecting and stabilizing them.

      • Great. One more question: is the wire a common welded wire or the mesh/twisted wire? As you can probably imagine, I am preparing to use the same technique for a short, 2′ high at most, and long retaining wall. I am planning on sinking 6×6″ pressure treated lumber at approx 3-4′ intervals. These will be exposed. Your bench is brilliant! I’d like to add that as well. Again, very nice work and this post has helped me the most!
        Cheers from CA!

  4. Thanks for the positive comments Julie – glad to hear you found the information useful.

    We used welded wire from the feed store. I don’t think the style makes much difference, as long as it’s strong enough to hold the rocks; and the mesh size is smaller than the bulk of your fill material. I just prefer the look of the square grid.

  5. shannon wilder says:

    What size welded wire did you use? I’m looking at 1×1 but I’d like bigger. Just having a hard time finding a bigger opening.

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