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Northwest Gardening: Gabion Rock Table

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

For under $100 you can build a contemporary end table using rocks from your garden. Lowe’s Northwest gardening contributor shows how she did it.

blue chair and rock table

By Marianne Binetti

I built a gabion table in less than hour, for under $40. So I more than accomplished my Lowe’s challenge, when the regional contributors were asked to do a project for under $100.

If I would have known how easy this project would be, I would have planned to build two—and placed a granite remnant across the pair to make an outdoor dining table.

Gabions are wire cages filled with rocks and traditionally used as retaining walls. Follow these steps to see how easy outdoor gabion furniture is to make for your own outdoor space.

supplies of slate tile, stakes, cage wire roll

Supplies: I used metal fenceposts that were a bit longer than 2 ft tall, and a roll of caging wire that was 2 ft tall. Copper-color Rust-Oleum spray paint decorated the metal structure, and a slate stepping stone, 18x18 in, became the tabletop.

You can purchase river rock from Lowe’s, or use larger rock boulders from your own yard to fill the cage.

four metal green stakes in ground

I used a tool called a fencepost pounder to insert the four stakes easily into the hard ground. I spaced the four stakes about 12 in apart so the 18-in tile that goes on top can overhang the base.

green stakes silver wire surround

Next I cut a section of wire fencing from the roll using wire clippers. I measured by wrapping a section of fence around the posts, leaving enough extra so the seam overlapped. I secured the back seam overlap using a bit of the baling wire that originally held the roll together.

copper-painted wire cage and paint can

Before adding the rocks I spray-painted my gabion cage copper. This gave it a more contemporary, finished look. Drop cloths protected nearby plants.

boulders inside wire cage

I washed the boulders with a strong jet from the hose, then layered the boulders into the cage. You also can use smaller rock or sharp rock flints.

slate tile on top of gabion cage

The slate slab, a stepping stone, sat right on top of the rock-filled cage. The slab’s weight kept the top in place.

slate tile on top of gabion cage

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