Fences and Gates in Your Yard and Garden

Fences and gates can be both a useful and attractive part of your yard or garden. Find facts and information on fences and fencing, types of fences, wooden fencing, gates, yard gates, and garden gates. You will also find out how fences and gates can be used in your landscape. A fence or gate can be planned so that it keeps both two-legged and four-legged animals from damaging the garden, or to be a screen to give privacy or to hide unsightly objects or spaces. They may be used as part of the garden plan, as a support for vines, or as a background for plants.

Choosing Your Fence

Fences should be planned to harmonize with the architecture and color of your house. If you have a home gazebo or a canopy gazebo you might want to make sure that it blends with the structure or materials that they are made of. You can add solar lights for fence posts to give you extra lighting. Outdoor lights for houses and all types of exterior house lighting can be very useful, as well as functional.

Uses of Fences

Where a barrier is needed to keep out dogs and rabbits, picket or wire fences such as chain link or woven wire must be used. Chicken wire can supplement the picket fence along the bottom for a complete safeguard against rabbits.

Post and rail fences and hurdle fences make attractive boundaries for informal places. Post and rail fences are informal and easy to maintain. The cost of their maintenance is much less than that of painted picket fences. A post and rail fence built from the correct materials will last for many years without any repairs.

"Yard Fence"

Picket fence and gate

Where a screen is wanted an old-fashioned board fence may be used, or the newer and more attractive fence of cedar posts set close together. Your fence post should be made of the best wood available.

Types of Wood for Fences

Black Locust is probably the most durable wood for posts. It will last in the ground for 50 years. Swamp Cypress, Swamp white Cedar, Redwood, Red Cedar and Long-leaved Yellow Pine can also be used.

All fence posts should have the ends treated with creosote, preferably under pressure.

For the fence boards or pickets, Cypress and California Redwood are best.

Board and picket fences require painting periodically. This should be take into consideration when choosing a fence as a support for vines. Pliable vines such as Clematis can be cut loose and laid down while the painting is done. When there are Roses, it is best to do the painting just after the flowering season.

Using Gates in Your Landscape

Gates are used not only with fences, but also in connection with stone walls and hedges. There are many types, from intricate and formal wrought iron to simple wooden ones. They should conform to the general design and feeling of the yard or garden as well. Gates can be a focal point leading into the garden. They can have designs on them, making them special and unique to your settings. You will find that the possibilities are endless. If you use your imagination and seek out all of the options of materials that are available to you, you are sure to find the best type of fence for your needs. If your gate is in between hedges or stones, or any non-wood material, you can be creative as to the color and decorative aspects when planning your gate.

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