On the fence: Choosing a barrier for your garden or yard

Randall Stokes

You’ve spent hours creating the perfect garden. Don’t ruin it with the wrong fence. Consider the following when selecting a garden fence:

- What kind of fence do you need? If you’re looking for privacy or animal proofing, you’ll want to go with a solid fence. Lowes. com recommends wood-paneled fencing for a decorative way to provide privacy and prevent invasion from four-footed friends. If you’re just marking boundaries, you have myriad options from which to choose. If you’re not really concerned about appearance and want to keep outpets and other animals, go with a wire-type fences.

- Are there neighborhood restrictions? Make sure before you build anything on your property that it doesn’t violate community, neighborhood or city regulations. Also, ensure you get everything in writing before moving forward.

- What is your fencing budget? It doesn’t matter how nice your fence looks -- if it drains your bank account and forces you to use the vegetable garden you’re protecting as your sole source of food, you may want to go with a less nice boundary marker.

When you price fencing, be sure to include, in addition to the fence, any tools you might need, concrete for posts and the potential need for hired labor.

You’ll definitely want to buy extra fencing, especially if you’re inexperienced. Most places will take it back, if unused. It’s always better to overestimate the cost.

- How much time do you have for fence maintenance?

Find out how much maintenance your fence will need and determine whether you have the time or willingness to maintain it.

Painted fences, for example, need to be painted occasionally and some need to washed.