The Buy Fencing Direct Blog

  1. Thrive-ing in the garden

    Thrive-ing in the garden

    Last month, we caught up with Neil Wilcox, Information Officer at Thrive, about how gardening can help people from all walks of life build confidence, skills, and relationships. We look at some of the work that Thrive does, how you can get involved, and how social and therapeutic horticulture can benefit everyone.

    Learning about Thrive

    1. What is Thrive?

    Thrive is the leading charity in the UK that uses gardening to bring about positive changes in the lives of people who are living with disabilities or ill health, or are isolated, disadvantaged or vulnerable. This is known as social and therapeutic horticulture (STH).

    2. Why was Thrive set up? What was the driving force behind it?

    Thrive was initially set up by Chris Underhill MBE in 1978 as the Society for Horticultural Therapy and Rural Training. Chris was inspired after seeing the benefits that working with plants and land brought to people who had b

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  2. Bringing people and gardens together

    Bringing people and gardens together

    Featured image: Darren Ema and Nicky planting some purple sprouting broccoli in the greenhouse

    We caught up with Ken over at People and Gardens to find out more about their work and some of the projects they are involved with, how gardening can provide substantial health benefits, and who they work with within the community for their projects and wider aims. Take a look at our interview below.

    Our interview with People and Gardens

     1. People and Gardens was set up to help people with learning disabilities and mental health issues to develop work and social skills. How does your work benefit them? 

    The work enables them to achieve participation, presence, competence, choice and respect, which leads to the participants taking control over their own lives, and to feeling that they are valued members of society.

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  3. An Interview with Incredible Vegetables

    An Interview with Incredible Vegetables

    Recently, we caught up with Mandy Barber from Incredible Vegetables to find out all about how she started growing vegetables, how she has become one of the main growers of ulluco in the UK, and to get some beginners tips to help us all become expert vegetable growers.

    Take a look at our interview below.


    Our Interview with Incredible Vegetables

    1. You and your partner set up Incredible Vegetables as an experimental vegetable growing project and now sell perennial vegetable plants and seeds in your online shop. When you started, did you ever expect to sell so much?

    It all started back in 2010, when we were lucky enough to buy a share in a piece of land which gave us a lot of space – not just to grow our own fo

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  4. How to straighten bowed deck boards

    This problem is easily corrected with a little know-how!

    • Firstly, use one nail at each end of the decking to to secure it to the end joists.
    • If the deck board bows towards the last board laid and fastened, carefully force a chisel between the two boards and pry the bowed board outwards to the correct position, then nail or screw into place.
    • If the bow curves outwards, away from the last board, you will need to drive the chisel into the joist on the outside of the curve until it is in the correct position and then nail or screw into place.

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  5. Garden Decking - How to Build a Decking Sub-Frame

    Garden Decking - How to Build a Decking Sub-Frame

    Before laying decking boards, it is important to get the decking sub-frame exactly right to ensure that you will have a firm and easy-to-maintain deck.

    Here are a few simple steps to take, in order to make sure that your garden decking is structurally sound and will last for years.

    Things to Consider When Building a Sub-Frame

    The Easy Deck Bearer (70 x 70 x 2400mm) insitu with decking boards, sat on gravel.


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  6. Deck board installation advice

    Before you lay the decking, we would recommend that any remaining work to the sub-structure, such as applying protective finish, is completed before starting to lay the deck boards. Take a look at our guide on building the sub-frame.

    The deck boards we supply are 28mm x 120mm in size which are the most desirable type of decking as they are less prone to sagging, warping, twisting or cupping.

    The exact size of the deck boards is dictated by the area that you are looking to cover with decking, the joist span and the layout / pattern that you choose for garden decking project.

    Before fastening any boards, lay out all but the last few boards on the joists, this way you will be able to see the final effect and make changes where necessary for the best appearance.

    Position the deck boards ''bark side'' up to minimize the splitting / warping of the wood that can occur. The way to tell th

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  7. Choosing the right decking for your needs

    Whilst it is always great to have the inside of your home just how you want it, there will come a time when you will also want to start to make the most of the outdoor space that you have. One great way to do this is to have some decking installed so that you can relax in the sun, have friends over for parties and barbeques or simply just revel in the envy that your friends show when they have seen it.

    Having decking installed will not only allow you to make the most of your outdoor space but it will also add to the value of your home when you one day decide to move on to pastures new.

    However, once you have made the decision to get your hands dirty and install some great looking decking, you will realise that it is not as simple as just picking a colour and deciding where to put it. You will first have to decide on what sort of decking material you are going to use.

    This decision should be based on where you want to put it, what your budget is, how much use

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  8. Deck care and maintenance

    In time wood that is left untreated becomes that familiar silvery-grey colour with a rough, bark-like surface, as the grain gradually opens and lets in moisture. But be warned, wait this long and it may be almost impossible to reverse!

    Instead, when timber is around one-year-old, sand off any old, flaking stain or dirt from the dry surface and apply an annual coat of good quality wood preservative. This will enrich and revitalise the surface of the wood just like a skin moisturiser. They also contain anti-fungicides that will help prevent rot, mould and lichens.

    There is a wide choice of timber care products, some combining treatment with a coloured wood stain for extra impact.

    Deck maintenance

    To keep your timber decking ship-shape, you will ideally need to treat it regularly using a specialist deck treatment. We recommend that you carry this out once a year for the first two to three years after you first install the deck, and then just once every

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  9. Water features for the garden

    Many homeowners dream of having a water feature in their garden; this can be a fountain, pond, waterfall, or even a stream. No matter the type of feature, water is a beautiful and striking addition to any garden. There are a number of DIY water feature kits on the market to choose from, as well as any number of other DIY water feature ideas to create from scratch.

    The DIY water feature can range from a very simple project to a very elaborate scheme. No matter their simplicity or their extravagance, DIY water features can be quite soothing and eye-catching, especially when they have some form of running water. DIY water features can be relatively inexpensive and require just a bit of elbow grease or they can be quite expensive and require a lot more sweat equity. Below are two examples of DIY water features that are both practical and intermediate in difficulty. They do take a bit of elbow grease but will produce a water feature that will be the envy of the neighbours.

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  10. Decking construction technique

    All decks involve some basic construction techniques to ensure that the finished project will provide many years of service.

    Constructing decking

    Fixings

    Weather resistant screws and galvanised nails and bolts should be used for your decking project; these will prevent rust from discolouring your deck.

    Drill pilot holes

    It is a good idea to drill pilot holes for your fasteners especially when nailing near the edge or end of a board.

    Space deck boards evenly

    Spacing deck boards 3-5mm apart will allow for and natural movement of the timber as it takes on, or loses moisture.

    Use an end coat preservative

    On all saw cuts and drill holes.

    Apply weather resistant finish

    Our pressure treated timber is guaranteed against rot for 15 years, but adding a weather resistant finish will increase the longevity of colour and finish of your deck.

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