Tuscan Veranda: Phase 3

Tuscan Veranda Project: Perimeter Masonry (Phase 1)
Tuscan Veranda Project: Perimeter Masonry (Phase 2)

Project begins: February 2016
For years, we have been holding our bacon fry events around a beat-up Coleman grill. Not that anyone had a problem with this, but I wanted to build something more permanent where we could build our wood fires. The idea was to build a stone fire pit surrounded by a stone wall. The first task was to build the wall. To get an idea of the wall's patch, I staged a bacon fry scenario and dug the footing around it.

Wall footing

I had the local building materials place deliver a few tons of stone.

Wall stone delivered

To support the weight of the stonework, I poured the footing.

Footing poured

At intervals, I installed drain pipes in the wall for drainage.


Then the long process of laying the stone begins. The process involves mortaring in rows of "dragon's teeth" and then filling in the void in the center with concrete.

Dragon's teeth

To frighten away the faint of heart, I made some human skulls out of concrete and used them as stones. I ended up casting nine of these to use throughout the whole project.


While completing the wall, I got started on the fire pit. The pit wall shouldn't need foundation support but I didn't want to take any chances.

fire pit footing

I made the inside liner out of firebrick and heat mortal, just like on the pizza oven. Then I mortared stones around to look like the surrounding wall.

fire pit stones

Project completed: May 2019
After completion, I lit several curing fires, each with increasing temperatures, allowing a cool-down in between each.
fire pit curing