Okay, I already had 16 cinder blocks on hand. I'm a little bit redneck, don't ask. I'm sometimes surprised my dog has more than three legs. Anyway, so I grabbed the oldest Teen Minion (who became oddly suspicious when I told him to bring leather gloves for us both), hopped in the 1989 S10 pick up, and headed for Home Depot where we purchased twenty-five cinder blocks, eight half cinder blocks...
...and thirty of these little mystery doodads. They're called block caps, and I'd nabbed a few a couple of days ago as I tweaked my design. I knew most of you had never cut cement block to size as the original project called for, so I came up with a very inexpensive alternative that worked like a charm!
I also bought 3 tubes of PS300 construction adhesive.
You'll need a total of two tools for this: a hammer and a caulking gun. First, stack the caps 4 deep and drive a nail through them a few times to create drainage holes.
Have a plan. I sketched out my design on plain old graph paper.
Using the construction adhesive, glue the caps to your "juts," the pieces that will stick out.
Dry stack your wall. Build the whole thing without adhesive first so you can double check your design.
Under each top block, simply place a cap to hold the soil.
Now, take a minute with a glass of wine to scrutinize your wall. Second guess yourself and text a couple of pictures to your buddy Michael to get his input.
Give his suggestion a try and decide that you like it better.
Then one section at a time, start running a thick bead of construction adhesive around the blocks and restack them. Anywhere I did a "jut" I used a half block to fill in.
This actually goes really fast.
Remember to place the caps under the top blocks. This will save you a ton of soil.
Grab another glass of wine, sit back, and be amazed at the nifty raised bed you just built. Basically without tools. This is a beginner project with great results if ever there was one. And we obviously have Feline Overlord approval.
Totally Cool Receipt:
25 cinder blocks: $30
8 half cinder blocks: $9.20
30 block caps: $5.40
3 tubes of adhesive: $11.94
$56.54 for the focal point of my new patio area? OH YEAH!
Next, let's add some flowers and herbs, shall we?