Fences

In the UK most garden plots are divided using timber fencing. As it is more economical and immediate than walling or planting a hedge.

Panelled fencing

The most widely used method due to the flexibility, availability and easy erection.

Pressure treated timber posts are concreted approximately 18"-24" into the ground, usually 6ft (a panel distance) apart. Pre-fabricated panels are then secured to the upright posts using brackets and or screws. A cap or finial should be secured to the top of each post to protect it from the weather.

If the panels are in contact with the ground, gravel boards should be used beneath the fence to prevent moisture rising and causing the fence panels to rot.

Prices for panelled fences vary depending on the height, quality and type.

Close board fencing

A more expensive fencing method than panel fencing but much stronger and more durable. Each pressure treated post is positioned and held in place, while the shaped end of an arris rails is inserted into the pre-cut slots in the post. The next post is then erected, slotting the other end of the arris rail into place. This method continues until the full length of the proposed fence is complete.

Before water is added to the postmix, ensure that the arris rails are level and the posts are vertical on the front and side with a spirit level. When the concrete has set the feather board can be secured to the arris rails with nails or screws.

Erecting fence posts

Fence posts need to be firmly secured into or to the ground. This can be achieved with Metpost post spikes, which are driven into the ground with a sledge or club hammer and post driving tool, Metpost bolt-downs which as the name suggests are bolted to a concrete slab, brickwork or decking. The third and cheapest solution, but which takes the longest to set up, is to dig post holes and back fill with post mix. Whichever method you use, when erecting, keep checking that the post is square, at right angles to the run of the fence, and with the aid of a spirit level that the post is plumb on both the front and side faces.

Notes:

Pre-drill holes in trellis and fencing before using galvanised nails or screws - this prevents the wood from splitting.

Paint the trellis and posts before you erect the fencing.

To reduce the rotting of fence posts, stand them in a container of preservative for a couple of hours before using.

If you are adding to existing fencing, make sure you start with the post closest to the current fencing.

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