The first thing a man did, having built his first dwelling, erected a high fence around it. He did it in order to hide himself and his loved ones from prying eyes. Millennia have passed and the principles of building houses have changed radically, but the custom of enclosing one’s dwelling with a fence is alive and well. Today a fence is not only a way to protect your home, but also an essential decorative element.
There are many different techniques for erecting a fence. One of them is the weaving of vines.
Features of a wicker fence
A wicker fence is used both to enclose the entire plot and to highlight areas within it. The material used is vines, willow branches, hazelnut, reed. Choose long and flexible branches and intertwine them, placing them parallel to each other. As a support and transverse base use thin poles dug into the ground perpendicular to it.
Wicker fencing has obvious advantages: environmental friendliness, ease of execution (wicker is available to anyone, just a little practice and weave a small square, which can then be used as an interior partition or mats), decorative properties, availability of material and its low cost.
It is also worth listing the disadvantages of a wicker vine fence: unreliability, inability to serve as a complete fence, short operating life, difficulty in replacing damaged sections, lack of fire safety. Nevertheless, wicker fences are quite common in landscape design.
There are several varieties of wicker hedges. They vary in height from 20-50 cm for fencing beds, to 100-200 cm for erecting around a house with a plot.
According to the direction of the bars, fences are horizontal and vertical. In the latter case, the rods stuck in the ground can even take root, then a green fence appears.
Material for a wicker fence
It will be much easier to weave a fence from a flexible rod. It can be willow, vine, reed, the main thing is the elasticity of the material. Any willow will do. It is better to prepare it in the off-season, but if necessary, you can do it in summer. It is better to go for it in places of high humidity.
The twig should be straight, with no unnecessary branches. There should be no visible signs of disease on it. To save time later on in fitting the vine to size, you can use a yardstick when cutting it from the tree.
For vertical supports, you need thicker and more inflexible branches with a diameter of at least 4 cm. Branches of pine are suitable for this. The length of the supports should be 50 cm more than the height of the future fence. It is on this 50 cm supports will be dug into the ground.
If it is decided to make a fence out of reeds, it should be collected from marshes or lakes. It has a broom-shaped top, not a brown cone. Inside the stem of the reed should not be hollow. It is the pulp with which it is filled that gives it the necessary elasticity.
Cut the vine with a sharp knife obliquely. The cut twig must be stored properly so that it can dry out. You can lay it out in a single layer in a well-ventilated room or at least under a canopy. The cane can be tied up in bundles and hung out to dry rather than spread out.
Immediately before weaving, the dried material is steamed to give it back its flexibility. Steaming is an express method. But you can do it another way. A couple of weeks before the erection of the fence pens put in water for 30-40 cm.
It is impossible not to mention such a material as polymer vine. It is sold in stores and construction or garden markets. It is a flexible tube with a rough surface, imitating a natural rod. It is very easy to use, because it was originally given all the properties necessary for weaving: flexibility, optimal length.
The polymer vine fence turns out more even. It is not afraid of moisture and fire. Although, the artificiality of the material is noticeable, and it loses the special flavor that only natural material can give a fence.
To make a vine fence with your own hands, in addition to vines and supports to do the work you will need wire, hammer, shovel, sand, some metal poles, pruner, hatchet.
The first thing to do is to make a marking for the future fence, defining its boundaries. Dig metal posts in the corners and stretch a twine on them 10-15 cm from the ground. You will get an even polygon. Along the twine, dig a trench 30-50 cm deep and 20 cm wide. Fill the trench with sand. This is drainage, which will not let the supporting branches to rot quickly.
Dig support branches into the backfilled trench at 50 cm intervals. The digging depth is 30-40 cm. Their lower end should be sharpened with an axe before digging. Then you can not dig them in, but hammer them down with a hammer. Soaking the ends in an antiseptic compound can significantly slow down their rotting.
The sand should be well compacted to hold the supports tightly. You can install a few metal supports among the wooden ones to increase the stiffness of the structure.
Peel off the bark from the twigs. They can be treated with hydrogen peroxide to lighten them, stain to give a darker shade, manganese to resemble mahogany, and iron sulfate to give a gray-brown hue.
Fasten the vine between the supports can be in different ways: tightly or with a gap, one by one or in pairs, triples in staggered order. If at a distance of 50 cm from the ground, all the poles are lined up with a cross vine, and then at another 50 cm higher the linings are repeated, the remaining twigs can be placed vertically rather than horizontally. Now it remains to cut the twigs at the top evenly with the secateurs. To do this, pull the twine once again. Along the top edge of the fence, let the edging go.
If the weaving is traditional – horizontal, it should be started from the bottom. The edges of each vine should be carefully masked by connecting each other with wire. When weaving tightly, tap each new row with a hammer to make gaps disappear.
Fix the edges of the bars of the uppermost row firmly with wire, masking it. You can fix the bar with self-tapping screws to the supports. The finished fence can be covered with the same stain or spray paint. The antiseptic treatment does not hurt either.
How to decorate a fence
In the photo of the vine fence, you can see that they want to decorate it, to make it more alive. To do this, you can make some of the supports a little higher and hang clay jars on them.
Special color can be added by planting decorative or ordinary sunflowers along the fence, digging a bench, put next to a cart wheel, the cart itself or a trough with pumpkins. On the fence to hang pots with ampelous plants.
Now you know how to make a vine fence, and you can do it yourself.
Photo of the vine fence
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