Seating Walls Transform Outdoor Space

3 Skippack Fireplace_0

Seating walls are a fantastic addition to any property and often become the best feature of our clients’ landscapes.   They are ideal for those who love to entertain and hang out outdoors. According to the American Society of Landscape Architects, sitting walls have become one of the top 10 trends in outdoor living design.

A sitting wall is a low wall intentionally designed to provide extra seating. They can be free-standing around a patio or fire feature, or a combination retaining wall/sitting wall that not only retain soil but add additional seating to the area.

Why a Sitting Wall?

Extra Seating around a Patio or Fire Pit

Sitting walls are a simple way to include additional seating around a fire pit or on the edge of a patio.   Family and friends always have a place to sit without dragging around chairs.   It’s a more efficient way to seat a crowd.    Adding a seating wall can eliminate the need to extend your patio for a lot of extra seating and works perfectly for smaller spaces.  If a sitting wall is rounded, it becomes a perfect place to install a fire pit with built-in seating.

Adding Value to a Retaining Wall

Retaining walls are often cut into the slope of a hill and are necessary to control erosion.   So while the retaining wall serves an important function, making it a seating wall doubles the value.  If your property is sloped, read How to Landscape a Sloped Yard.

We pride ourselves in being Retaining Wall Design and Installation Experts.

Defining Outdoor Space

Sitting walls can separate a patio into different outdoor living areas.  Cozy conversation areas and dining areas can feel like separate rooms.    An outdoor fireplace can even be incorporated into a wall.  Segmented spaces can clearly distinguish the fire pit area from the kitchen/dining area or conversation area.

Sitting wall with back, lighting and landscaping in Pottstown, PA 

Additional Design Options

Built-in Backrest adds extra comfort to your seating wall and a beautiful dimension to your patio.

Add Lighting makes the area inviting.   Incorporating lighting into your seat wall can be both a functional and an aesthetic addition. Landscape lighting obviously plays a valuable role in making a space more usable by providing light when the sun goes down. You want people to feel safe as they’re navigating the area where the seat wall is situated.

Add Landscaping Around or Near a Seat Wall to soften the area around your hardscape areas.   You might want to carve out a landscape bed behind the seat wall to add flowers.    But be mindful of certain factors when selecting plants.  Don’t choose plants that have invasive roots that might interfere with your wall or patio or plants that might attract bees.  Related reading: Tips on Landscaping around a Patio

Downingtown sitting wall with lighting

Sitting Wall Details

Height and Width

You want to make sure your sitting wall is a comfortable sitting height.   They are typically built at roughly 18” high but can be a few inches higher including capstones.  It’s basically based on your needs and your overall design specifications.  The width ranges from 12” to 24”.


There are many choices: paver stone, bluestone, brick, or other natural stone choices.  You can select different materials that either blend or contrast with your home or patio.

Retaining wall in Wayne that surrounds patio and making the space cozy.

Hire a Landscape Professional with Experience

Walls are one hardscaping feature where you shouldn’t take installation short cuts.  Walls need to be structurally safe and be able to handle the weight of people sitting as well as withstand the erosion behind it if it’s serving as a retaining/sitting wall.   The area needs to be excavated properly and address any drainage issues.  You don’t want water to build up behind the wall which will cause it to lean or become unstable.

Your sitting wall should look really good within the landscape design.  A landscape professional with design experience building outdoor living areas with seat walls will insure that it’s truly a functional and decorative addition.


Whether you are interested in sitting walls for extra sitting, pure aesthetic reasons, or to retain a small or steep embankment, Whitehouse Landscaping has over 20 years of experience to help you with your landscaping needs.

Contact the experts at Whitehouse Landscaping  and start enjoying your property to the fullest.  You can have confidence in Whitehouse Landscaping building you a strong, fully functional, and attractive sitting wall that will enhance your property.