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Fencing ideas - new build garden design

Hello,

We’re thinking about ideas for our new build garden design. One area we’re not too sure of is the fencing. 

We want to try to ensure that whatever we do will last a good few years and be considerate to our neighbours too.

Overall, we have contemporary design in mind.

We like contemporary cedar or painted horizontal battens (slats), but ideally wanted to just have a few areas of these rather than the whole fences. But we’re kind of unsure what to do with the rest of the side fencing.

The fencing isn’t panels but rather was installed overlapping piece by piece by the contractor.

We like the idea of painting it but don’t want to risk paint running through to our neighbours’ sides (even if they did give permission for us to paint it, we haven’t asked yet). 

We own one side fence and the neighbours own the other side fence. I think we own the back fence as it is installed in front of the existing neighbours’ old fence, so potentially we could paint this all with little risk. It is the side fences that we’re not sure of.

We could just let it age naturally, it’s kind of a pressure treated orange colour at the moment. But if we did this, in a few years, the original fence may well need some oil/treatment anyway or start to degrade. In which case any treatment could also potentially run through to the neighbours’ sides.

We could get some climbing plants like jasmine or honeysuckle to soften and screen the fences, but still in a few years, perhaps the original fence will need attention.

We could potentially put battens in front of the whole fence too. Although expensive, this is still an option. But would there be a way of doing this so that the original fencing is in tact (ie not attached)? Incase it needs to get replaced so we wouldn’t have to disturb all the battens. Also, would the existing fencing be visible through the battens? We want to try to disguise this if possible.

Has anyone else had experience of this type of thing?

Thanks in advance


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Posts

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 45,984
    A photo would really help. Too many different pieces of info to visualise it. Is the 'overlapping' fence vertical feather edge?

    The only thing I'd say is - if you want to paint any new fencing, paint the timber before you construct. If you want partial slatted fence, you might be better putting in an entire fence of your own, inside the existing ones.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Hi,

    Thanks for your reply. 

    Here are some photos - it’s pretty much a plain square of lawn.



    Thanks, I’d forgotten the name but I think it is feather edge fencing like you say. 

    Below is an example of the slatted fence that we like, but could potentially look too much if it were all like this. So breaking it up somehow, either with climbing plants or painted sections of fence could potentially be good.



    I guess we’re not sure how this could work practically. For example, would the existing fence be seen still?

    Thanks for the tip about it may be best to run an entire fence of our own inside the existing one. We will definitely consider this as this way we’d be in control a lot more then.






  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 45,984
    That's great @AutumnRain - it just helps to get a clearer idea  :)
    For the horizontal battening - yes, you'd still see the other fence behind, but - if it's painted black, for example, it would disappear, and if you want the cedar slats, it would make them stand out more, so that's an advantage if you want to have them as a feature. You can always do every second panel, so that it isn't overwhelming, and have a climber on the ordinary panels, or have a border with shrubs/perennials etc. 
    However, it would only be courteous to ask the neighbours if they'd mind you painting the back of the fence. Technically, that fence is yours, because the posts are on your side, so it wouldn't be a problem to attach the slats to those, but painting would be different [ in case of bleed through] even though it's your fence. It avoids any potential  'neighbour' problems.  ;)
    An alternative would be to attach something to your side of the fence instead. I've used the underlay you get for pond liners for part of my fence. It's the only part of my boundary which isn't double sided, and it provides a windbreak for plants, especially as I'm redoing all the border there. There will be climbers etc on it, so it will disappear quite readily. Just our cars on the other side, so no need to ask anyone's permission.  

    I think for the rest of your fence, the same would apply for painting the other side, as that fence isn't yours. It might be best to ask first before doing anything, so that you have a clear idea of what you can do. If those neighbours are a bit iffy, then it might be worth doing your own fence. You could match up the two sides, depending on what your final ideas are for the space.
    The back fence sounds fine, from what you're saying. You don't want a load of different bits and pieces if possible. Hope that all makes sense  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • PlantmindedPlantminded WirralPosts: 975
    That looks like new fencing in really good order.  I would think about concealing the existing fencing with a range of shrubs and trees that you like rather than duplicating existing fencing which is already sound.

    Any fencing will make your garden feel enclosed.  Well thought out planting will lessen this closed in effect, blending your garden in with any greenery in your neighbouring gardens.

    I like the horizontal fencing in your photo - I would use this where planting may be difficult due to soil condition or aspect, or where you want extra privacy for a seating area or to conceal bins etc.  You can still have a contemporary garden with the fence disguised by greenery, it's just down to plant choice and how you place it.
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze South NottsPosts: 1,066
    If the site is flat you could consider a circular lawn to draw the eye away from the boundary.  
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze South NottsPosts: 1,066
    Just to expand on what I said earlier.  If you look on line for gardens with circular lawns there are lots of ideas. Using evergreens as a back drop and planting deeply into the corners your fence won't see such a problem If you plant directly on to a fence you may be tempted to plant things that will cover quickly but are also capable of breaking the fence and then you will need to start again. Slow growing climbers often need time to put down roots before they even attempt to climb. You often see old broken fence panels or posts broken and covered in ivy. I am only aware of one good plant for a fence Cotoneaser horizontalis which gives interest in every season, use horizontal wires then if the fence breaks the old panel can be taken out with little disturbance to the plant. Think it is best to look at all options before you start.
  • Fairygirl said:
    That's great @AutumnRain - it just helps to get a clearer idea  :)
    For the horizontal battening - yes, you'd still see the other fence behind, but - if it's painted black, for example, it would disappear, and if you want the cedar slats, it would make them stand out more, so that's an advantage if you want to have them as a feature. You can always do every second panel, so that it isn't overwhelming, and have a climber on the ordinary panels, or have a border with shrubs/perennials etc. 
    However, it would only be courteous to ask the neighbours if they'd mind you painting the back of the fence. Technically, that fence is yours, because the posts are on your side, so it wouldn't be a problem to attach the slats to those, but painting would be different [ in case of bleed through] even though it's your fence. It avoids any potential  'neighbour' problems.  ;)
    An alternative would be to attach something to your side of the fence instead. I've used the underlay you get for pond liners for part of my fence. It's the only part of my boundary which isn't double sided, and it provides a windbreak for plants, especially as I'm redoing all the border there. There will be climbers etc on it, so it will disappear quite readily. Just our cars on the other side, so no need to ask anyone's permission.  

    I think for the rest of your fence, the same would apply for painting the other side, as that fence isn't yours. It might be best to ask first before doing anything, so that you have a clear idea of what you can do. If those neighbours are a bit iffy, then it might be worth doing your own fence. You could match up the two sides, depending on what your final ideas are for the space.
    The back fence sounds fine, from what you're saying. You don't want a load of different bits and pieces if possible. Hope that all makes sense  :)
    Thank you for the information. It’s good to hear about how to disguise the existing fencing behind the slats. I’ve also heard that potentially something like black landscape fabric (the cloth kind) could be good. 

    Just trying to work out the most efficient way of doing it that will also last a few years too. If painting is the way forward then we’ll try to figure out a way of it not dripping through to the other side, but we wouldn’t want to do it unless it is the best option.

    We will definitely ask the neighbours as even if it is technically our fence, we want to be friendly with them too.
  • That looks like new fencing in really good order.  I would think about concealing the existing fencing with a range of shrubs and trees that you like rather than duplicating existing fencing which is already sound.

    Any fencing will make your garden feel enclosed.  Well thought out planting will lessen this closed in effect, blending your garden in with any greenery in your neighbouring gardens.

    I like the horizontal fencing in your photo - I would use this where planting may be difficult due to soil condition or aspect, or where you want extra privacy for a seating area or to conceal bins etc.  You can still have a contemporary garden with the fence disguised by greenery, it's just down to plant choice and how you place it.
    Thank you. That all sounds good. We’d be interested in choosing some climbing plants that could mask the fencing (like a green screen) and also add a nice feel to the garden. 
  • Just to expand on what I said earlier.  If you look on line for gardens with circular lawns there are lots of ideas. Using evergreens as a back drop and planting deeply into the corners your fence won't see such a problem If you plant directly on to a fence you may be tempted to plant things that will cover quickly but are also capable of breaking the fence and then you will need to start again. Slow growing climbers often need time to put down roots before they even attempt to climb. You often see old broken fence panels or posts broken and covered in ivy. I am only aware of one good plant for a fence Cotoneaser horizontalis which gives interest in every season, use horizontal wires then if the fence breaks the old panel can be taken out with little disturbance to the plant. Think it is best to look at all options before you start.
    Thanks, we hadn’t considered a circular lawn but that’s definitely worth looking into. 

    Thanks for the tips about the climbers too. We had ivy in our old garden and can understand what you mean about it. I’ll look into the Cotoneaser horizontalis too.
  • Simone_in_WiltshireSimone_in_Wiltshire WiltshirePosts: 164
    @AutumnRain
    Just my thoughts. After watching all Garden Rescues, Love my Garden and all other design programs that turn a blank canvas into a beautiful garden, I learned that all the money and material spent is more or less gone after a few years. Nature does its part and will change the look, and with all wood, it doesn't last for ever. To keep it as it is, you will have to spend a lot of work already after a the first year, when you have to clean the panels from your "would like, but not sure" picture. The sun will make it uneven on the less sunny side after the second year. The rain does not only wet a fence, it also gives a green, algae like cover over the winter which you would have to remove if you want to keep the look. Also painting these panels with the small gaps in between will not be a very nice job.
    The fence that you have currently looks in a good shape and it's easy to paint.
    What we did to have an unusual colour rather than one of the 8 or so available in B&Q, we chose a customised colour from Valspar. We bought several testers and tried them to see what they will look like over the entire day, morning, afternoon, evenings and when it's sunny or grey. Valspar has a choice of colours of at least 200 colours and allows to use the same colour as fence or masonry  or bench colour. We spent approx £24 for 6 testers, but it was worth the money because we came up - surprisingly - with a dark brownish colour, which looks absolutely contemporary and gives the plants and flowers a much stronger effect. The fence that you have got would cost you approx £100 in this customised colour. You may have to repaint it after 3 years?
    Being a German, after living in the UK for many years, my English is still far from being perfect, but I always do my best.
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