Retaining Walls
French Drains
Landscape Design
New Lawn Installation

What Do Retaining Walls Do?

Resolving hillside erosion through hardscaping.

Pittsburgh and it’s surround neighborhoods – especially the South Hills – have surely seen their fair share of rain this year. It seems like every day you hear about a neighbor’s retaining wall buckling, or worse, hillsides giving way to landslides. Retaining walls are used to add support to dirt that would otherwise recede and shift without a sturdy structure behind it. Pittsburgh landscaping and hardscaping expert’s J Bird’s Landscaping are delving into what retaining walls do and why you should consider installing one today.

What is a retaining wall?

Simply put, a retaining wall retains soil. It keeps dirt in place, so you can utilize the ground above or below without the threat of the earth receding.

Retaining Walls Pittsburgh

What causes hillside instability?

  • Poor drainage
  • Seasonal freezing and thawing
  • Natural shifting and settling of the ground

If an existing retaining wall is showing signs of buckling, it may be caused by rain water that has nowhere to go. Overtime, poor drainage will cause your wall to push outward thus creating an unsightly and unsafe hillside. During the transition of Pittsburgh’s cold and warm months, water that doesn’t have anywhere to drain will freeze and thaw, further diminishing the integrity of your wall. Lastly, many homes built in and around our hilly terrain will experience the natural shifting and settling of the land over time. You can prevent sloping by building a retaining wall.

Aesthetics & Curb Appeal

Retaining walls not only reinforce your property, they can take your landscape to a whole new level. You can create a tiered-effect to your lawn, showcase a beautiful flower bed , or add ornamental, moisture-loving plants and trees to help maintain the water run-off.


An eroding hillside or buckling retaining wall will only get worse with time. At J Bird’s Landscaping we specialize in VERSA-LOK and Precast concrete walls, designed to meet your needs and budget. Located in the South Hills, call J Birds Landscaping & Excavating for a FREE quote today – 412-224-0639!