Setting up and installing reed fencing can really add that natural fence touch to any yard or garden if it is built properly. Some common mistakes people make involves either securing the fence properly or not sealing the fence to prevent mold and rot from developing on its surfaces over time. This happens from weather and insect exposure, as well as rain water pooling around the fence posts and the lower skirting. Many of these small things can effect your fences lifespan in a large way, and can determine how much maintenance is going to be needed in just a few years time.
1. Set Posts Before Mounting the Fencing
A common issue is installing the reed fencing onto the fence posts too soon. The actual fence posts that are going to support the weight have to be sturdy and mounted properly to prevent them from bending or breaking over time. A good method is to seal all wood surfaces with a water sealant to prevent bad weather from eating away at its surface. Make sure the post holes are at least two feet or more into the ground to provide better stability.
2. Water Seal the Base of your Support Poles
The bottom of your fence posts that will hold up your reed fencing should be coated in tar to prevent water building up in the base of the post holes and causing them to rot. This tar will keep water out of the wood itself and help allow the posts to stick to the concrete footers that you will want to pour. The tar allows the wood and cement to join, creating a water tight seal, that pooling water will not be able to penetrate.
3. Cement the Post Base for Stability
At the base of your post holes, you should dig out a ball shape hole in the bottom, so that the cement will create a foot to prevent the post from coming out of the ground. This foot will help stabilize the posts as they hold up your reed fencing, and force water that gets to the bottom, away from your work. You can add smaller rocks to your cement mix to help the foot grip the ground better, which will keep it from leaning over time, as it will dig in as it tries to move.
4. Water Seal all Exposed Surfaces
Both the top and the bottom of your posts should be water sealed, to prevent rot from water getting on the inside of your poles. Your reed fencing should also be stained, painted or water sealed from the elements as well to protect it from the same deterioration as it is exposed to inclement weather and barometer changes. Sealing the wood also prevents wood damaging bugs such as termites or carpenter ants from digging homes into your fence. It's a good idea to keep the bottom of your fence one or two inches from the ground, to prevent pooling water from eating away at it. Climbing vines, and other types of plants, should also be kept away from the fence to prevent them from grabbing and splitting the fence boards apart from overgrowth.