Does it ever make sense to buy stones?


Stones: the hallmark of the fancy backyard.

This tiny circle of stones is an experiment: I am obsessed with stones and think they are the key to ultimate backyard pimpage; Mr. Goodies thinks it is ridiculous to buy stones because you can just pick them out of the ground.  Buuuut we already picked all the readily available stones out of the ground to make vaguely Middle Earth-esque backyard fashions, such as in the garden here:


The medieval stone look is fine, but I have my sights set on a fancy two-tiered garden wall system.  And that requires professional stones.  Take the lumpy soil erosion zone behind the retaining wall (currently lined with ground stones):


Some day I wish to make this mop of weeds into a sweet tiered garden with an ivy backdrop.

I am convinced that stones have great ROI.  Any real money we put into this house needs to translate to added resale value.  And the sex appeal of the tiered garden cannot be denied.  How ace would it be to turn our dust bowl into something like this?

Let’s run some numbers then.  The tiny plum tree circle took 12 stones, so I would estimate that the wall would be at least 100 stones long.  At two levels of 3 rows, it would come to 600 stones.  The plum tree stones were $1.28 each, so the wall project would run us roughly $800.  Oy.  And you know I’m probably under-estimating.

The painful part is that it would be for a bunch of stones…

So what do you think… slum-dunk DIY idea?  Or wasteful pile of stones?

Image from

4 thoughts on “Does it ever make sense to buy stones?

  1. Oh yes! I vote for the backyard ‘pimpage’ and lots of it! Love that word, ‘pimpage’, is it pronounced (peemp – aaaajh)?

    Love it!

  2. We did a lot of stuff with stones in my backyard for cheap by renting a truck to carry them away from a collapsed wall that someone was willing to let us take stones from for free. They won’t be as ‘clean’ looking though. Also, people sell stones for cheap on craigslist when they buy too many for their projects.

    • Good points! Though I looked through C-list after you mentioned it and had crummy luck. But I should keep looking, and maybe expand the search area. Wonder if there is any magic keyword for “surplus wall stones”….

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