Fencing is part of your landscape design and plays a big part in the aesthetic value of your yard. However, it’s not just for looks. The function of your fence also determines what type and style of fence you need. To make sure you get the right fencing for the yard or garden, you need to be clear about the purpose of your fence.
• Security: keep your animals in / people out.
• Privacy: provide a barrier from the outside world.
• Protection: protect your plants and animals from wildlife.
• Aesthetics: enhance the appearance of your property.
Once you determine your purpose, it’s time to select the right fencing type and style. Another consideration is your budget; cost is often the deciding factor when you choose what fencing material to use. The most common garden fence materials are wood, bamboo, wire mesh or chain link, metal, and electric fencing.
Wood is the natural option, it is aesthetically pleasing, and can be used to create many different designs and types of fencing. You might select a solid fence for privacy or the classic post and rail.
Whether you keep it natural or paint your wooden fence, it will require regular maintenance to protect it from the elements. You need to repaint or retreat it annually. The quality of the wood determines the cost. For those on a tight budget, lap panels would be the least expensive form of wooden fencing.
Add a touch of the exotic to your yard. Bamboo fences are ideal for screening or privacy, and the bamboo itself is extremely durable, requiring very little maintenance. Bamboo fencing comes in rolls and panels so is easy to construct and is suitable for both perimeters fencing as well as an internal screening of patios and terraces.
Do you know that a bamboo plant is a form of grass? But, don’t let that fool you because it’s highly durable. Plus, it resembles wood aesthetically and is one of the fastest growing plants. As a result, it is a great alternative to wood.
Wire Mesh • Chain Link
A chain link or wire mesh fence is more functional than aesthetic, but it is also very secure so ideal for families with dogs and young children.
This is a very durable, low maintenance fencing option, that won’t break the bank. Planting shrubs, flowers and climbers can improve both the look of the fence as well as provide some privacy.
Wrought Iron is the traditional, heritage metal fencing material, and is still used for estate fencing and perimeter fences, but it is gradually being replaced by lower maintenance metals like steel and aluminum. However, a well-maintained wrought iron fence will last a lifetime.
Wrought iron provides a very strong, aesthetic fence, but it does require regular maintenance to retain their look. It needs to be sanded down and repainted every two or three years to protect it from the elements.
Aluminum is a recent addition to the domestic fencing market, however, in hotter climates, it is popular for use around swimming pools. This type of fencing comes in many designs and heights and is a very low maintenance metal fence option.
Unlike wrought iron, it doesn’t corrode, so will stay looking good over time. It is a lightweight metal, and not as strong as iron or steel, so it can bend or dent. An environmental consideration is that it is completely recyclable.
Steel is overtaking wrought iron to become the metal of choice for traditional metal fencing. As well as being aesthetically attractive, steel is stronger than other metal options.
It can withstand harsh weather and doesn’t rot, so requires less maintenance. Installing metal fencing is, in most cases, not a DIY job, but once in place, a steel fence will last for years.
Electric fencing is a perfect option for protecting your plants, vegetables, and ponds in your garden. It can also ensure that your dog doesn’t slip through your existing fence. Electric fences are lightweight and portable, and easy to install.
You can use netting or lines of tape to deter predators from raiding your fishpond and keep rabbits away from your vegetables. The fence posts and tapes come in green and black, so your fence will blend in with the surroundings.