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Natural Ways To Protect Fences From Invasive Plants

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The addition of fencing to any landscape is a large investment for home owners. Properly maintaining and caring for the fence will help the structure last for numerous years. While weather is often an element in fence damage, invasive weeds and vines can cause a lot of damage. When invasive plants take over your fencing, there are natural methods to help keep the plants out and protect your fences for good.

Not only are there protection tips for all fences, but there are tips for specific types of materials.

Mulch Edges

The sun helps propel the growth and rooting of several weeds or invasive species. One of the best blocking methods for this is to line the edges of your fences with mulch. Adding mulch to the edges of a fence has numerous benefits. It adds an elegant and rustic look. A natural smell can be added to your lawn with cedar and oak mulch.

The most important benefit is the protection from invasive plants. The mulch naturally blocks the sun out so plants will not grow beneath the surface. Adding new mulch every year helps update the look and adds continuous protection.

Landscape Fabric

When you are having fences installed, you have the benefit of adding some landscaping fabric to the holes that are dug for the fencing. The fabric, preferably made of burlap, feature holes so that the soil can breath and stay healthy. The other fabric prevents weeds and vines from growing through.

Fencing companies may offer this option when the fence is installed. If they do not, you can easily bring it up before the fencing is anchored into the ground. Along with burlap fabric, you have the option of purchasing 100% recycled plastic landscape fabric.

Wooden Fences

Natural wooden fences can easily warp, splinter, or crack when plant species grow up on them. It's important to remove the plants as soon as possible. Extra care should be given to the wooden fences in the spring. This is when the plants will start to grow. Once the temperature gets hot, the wood will expand and pressure from plants can cause more damage.

If you store firewood in your yard, it's important to keep it away from wooden fences. Firewood can have vines and other species growing on it. These plants can quickly spread and climb on wooden fences.

Plastic Fences

Thick plastic fences offer durability, no wear, and can often be customized to a variety of colors. Plants growing around these fences will not typically cause damage, but they can invade quickly.

One of the main things to look out for on plastic fences are hollow poles. If the bottom is open on the pole, plants can actually grow on the inside of the fence. Cut the plant down by the root and weed around the area to prevent this from happening. Properly mulching the area is beneficial too.

Metal Fences

Iron and steel bar fences have an elegant look that can be installed with a number of different finishes. Removing vines and weeds will help the fences look as clean as possible. When using small clippers to remove vines, it's a good idea to stick with hard plastic garden tools. This will prevent scratches or cut directly onto the fence. Try cutting the vine from the root and then carefully unwrapping it off the fence.

Instead of using mulch, a crushed stone base works well with the metal fence. It helps match the design of the fence and will block sun out from the soil while still allowing water to seep into the ground. Choose from a number of stones like granite or limestone.

When hiring a fence company, consult with them on the best tips for protecting the fence for years to come.