March 29, 2015 at 7:48 pm #39516
I desperately need a fence for my future garden. I’ve been mulling over what type to use, I generally dislike fences, and I paticularly do not like the cost. I don’t want an ugly construct in my yard so I’ve decided to use a wattle fence. I made a really ugly wattle fence for goats eons ago, but I know if I use thinner flexible branches I can weave myself a work of art. Below is an article on building wattle fences.
“Wattle fences are made by weaving material in and out of posts in the ground. They were often used on the small farms of Victorian England. In fact, during those times there were craftsmen who made their living by making movable wattle fences called hurdles. This craft has gone by the wayside as more modern fencing options have come into use, but wattle fencing can still offer an inexpensive way to provide a fence wherever needed. Wattle hurdles can provide easy-to-move fencing to temporarily separate livestock or pastures. They are easy to make, require no special equipment, and can be made from many different materials. In fact, wattle fences are a great way to clear out the undergrowth in a woodlot or elsewhere around the property. It is hard to see how the knowledge has almost been lost when there are so many benefits to wattle fencing.”March 29, 2015 at 7:56 pm #39517
A link to another article and more pictures. The wattle work on this link is very attractive.March 29, 2015 at 8:17 pm #39518
I would go for the willow if you have them on hand , I watched a British bush crafter on youtube make a shelter from willow , when green , its a joy to work with as its easily manipulated , then it dries firm . If you could mix it with some thorny spiky material to keep the pests out , you would be in business .March 29, 2015 at 8:30 pm #39519
What a great idea! I like the look of it, and it the materials would be readily available in most country settings.March 29, 2015 at 9:20 pm #39521
Well I’m going to use what is growing in my woods regardless of what it is. As long as the material is of suitable straightness and proper diameters. I have red oak, poplar, sumac, chery, maple and some scrub I never identifed, maybe birch one or two. Willow would be nice but I have none. One thing about this is,…it uses a lot, I mean a really lot of branches.
Edit: I have to take that back. I’m not going to use whats in my woods, it’s all a bunch of bent crappy looking stuff only suitable for camp fires. The woods were logged 2 summers ago and I was hoping for a lot of young saplings, but they just didn’t come in yet. I’m going to see if I can cut some local bamboo thickets.March 30, 2015 at 12:57 am #39525
74 I have built many wattle fences…started because I had no money for ‘real’ fence. If you get or make something to soak the branches in for 3-4da ys before you start building you’d be surprised how easy it goes. great fence system. Just takes patience and time.March 30, 2015 at 1:43 am #39528
Thanks Tweva, Yes a good soak will help dried branches. I really just need relatively straight branches so it looks decent when I’m done. It will take many hundreds of sticks. Constructing it is the easy part.March 30, 2015 at 1:53 am #39529
74, how large an area are you fencing in?March 30, 2015 at 2:11 am #39531
About 100′ x 60′ 320 linear feet plus or minus, just depends how much I enclose.March 30, 2015 at 2:20 am #39532
Thanks. I will be interested to hear how this comes out. Making fences this way could really come in handy down the road. My garden area is about 75′ X 170 which would be 490 linear ft. Because I’d need to keep deer out, what I am visualizing is a tall version that is tightly woven on the bottom to keep rabbits and small critters out but then mostly a very open weave up above that is just enough to keep deer out. My big experiment for this year though is trying non-fence ways of keeping the deer out. The guy that rototilled it for me suggested I try it before spending a lot of money on fencing.March 30, 2015 at 2:45 am #39534
If your not concerned with appearance you can make a very strong tall fence by weaving the branches vertically through rails. They come out the top in a vee. You can let them be as tall as you want. Trimming the tops all the same lenght will keep it from looking to crazy. Branches used in this manner can be 1.25″ in diameter. To keep deer out the spacing could be about 6″ to 8″ apart. The first wattle fence I built I used this method. It was strong enough to keep horses in.March 30, 2015 at 12:52 pm #39545
Great idea 74. It looks nice. Does it take any nails to hold it in place?March 30, 2015 at 1:45 pm #39547
No nails needed FreedomMarch 30, 2015 at 2:36 pm #39549
74, my garden area is several hundred feet from the house so whatever I do there isn’t going to have much aesthetic effect on the property. It is not visible from the road at all. At the moment what intrigues me is having this as an option should I suddenly find myself in need of a fence and being able to have a standard fence installed as would be the case in normal times.April 4, 2015 at 1:52 am #39733
How’s the strength on this? It actually looks pretty substantial. Either way, its free or at the least extremely cheap, and looks darn good. I’m sold!
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