This month's topic for Garden Blogger's Design Workshop is one on which I could use some help. A garden needs some kind of enclosure, either a hedge, a wall or a fence as a background and frame for the garden. When I bought this property, I was looking for a fenced yard to keep my two dogs in. The fence is also very helpful in keeping critters like rabbits out. The old adage goes "Good fences make for good neighbors," but my fence isn't a good fence anymore.The fence has not been replaced yet because I can't decide if we should try a fake wood fence or simply put up another wooden stockade fence.
Most of the fences enclosing Squirrelhaven are not mine. The chainlink fence belongs to the homeowner's association on the other side.
Nearly all of the stockade fence backing the woodland garden belongs to the next-door neighbors, while the slatted fence belongs to the other neighbors.
So what I have is three different fences, one of which needs replacement.
The stockade fence was here when I bought the property. When I added a gate, I decided not to stain it so that it would blend in with the old fencing. As this photo shows,
the weathered fencing fades into the background during the summer. If the old fence were to be replaced with fake wood, it would not be as unobtrusive. However, the composite material fencing would last longer. I dread having new fencing installed, as some plants will be trodden on by the fence installers. Any replacement fencing would have to be solid, rather than slatted, to keep out the rabbits, who slip into the yard between the slats.
Another problem is the chainlink fence. To describe it as not attractive is a vast understatement. I have allowed a wild grape to grow on it to camouflage it during the growing season.
I would put a more appealing fence in front of it, but we enjoy the view of the pond. As a partial solution, I planted Thuja occidentalis at the south end of the fence, where screening is needed.
I just don't know what to do about the center section. Eventually, all those Box Elder trees (Acer negundo) will be removed, as they are growing into the powerlines.
So, should I replace the old stockade fence with a composite-based fence, or with more stockade fencing? Or should I get a better grade of wood fence and stain it dark gray? Should I put any sort of fencing in front of the chainlink fence or leave it as is? Any suggestions?