Your Guide to Buying Garden Fencing

The humble garden fence may seem a straightforward boundary. However, with a wide range of fence panels, fence posts, treatments and fencing accessories… buying garden fencing can be more complicated than first imagined.

That’s why we, at Buy Fencing Direct, have created Your Guide to Buying Garden Fencing. We take you from checking boundary ownership to choosing the best fence panel for your garden, with lots of fencing tips and advice along the way.

If there is anything we don’t cover, our friendly, knowledgeable, UK-based Customer Service Team is always on hand to help you find the right garden fence for you. Just give them a call on 033 003 0515.

Know Your Boundaries

illustration of neighbours talking over front garden fenceBefore you even start to think about which garden fencing to buy, you need to stop and make sure you know which boundary is yours, if there are any restrictions in place and how big your boundary is.

Is it your fence?

To avoid disputes with neighbours, it is first important to make sure you know which boundary is yours. This can be as simple as checking your house deeds. For more detailed advice, read Which Fence is My Fence?

What height fence?

There are rules and regulations about how high your garden fence can be. This can depend on how close to the road your boundary is or adjoins the land of a listed building. Find the rules and regulations here: How Tall Can My Fence Be?

How Much Fencing Do I Need?

You need to measure out your boundary before you start browsing the full range of fence panels. You won’t be able to plan your budget if you don’t know how many panels and fence posts you need.

If you have existing fence posts, carefully measure the distance between – millimeters can make a difference. An average fence panel is 6ft wide but be careful. While traditional fence panels are 183mm wide, European style panels are 180mm. Once you have an idea of your distance, make sure you check individual fence panel specifications.

The average fence post is 3-4 inches (70-100mm) wide. You will need to factor this in for the beginning and end of your fence run, plus in between each fence panel.

Of course, if you are planning on adding a gate, this will need factoring also. If you browse our garden gates online, you will see that they are mostly advertised as 3ft wide. However, be sure to check the specification because they can range from 900mm to 910mm both of which are just under 3ft.


Which Fence Panels are Best?

Forest Garden 6x6 Europa Hit and Miss Fence PanelWell, that’s a big question! The best garden fence depends on a few factors:

  • your personal and garden style
  • your treatment preference
  • your location special requirements
  • your budget

 Fence Panel Style

Garden fencing generally falls into two styles: traditional fence panels and decorative fence panels.

Your garden fence is the frame for your garden. It acts as a backdrop to your borders, the canvas for your climbing plants and the scaffolding for your garden’s structure. Unlike wallpaper, you can’t take it down and change it on a whim.

Your garden fence is an investment you will need to be happy with for many years to come.


Traditional Fence Panels

This range of fence panels includes overlap fence panels (sometimes referred to as lap fencing), featheredge fencing, closeboard fence panels, vertical board fencing and picket fencing.


Forest Garden 6x6 Overlap Fence PanelThe main purpose of traditional fence panels is to mark a boundary, provide security and offer privacy. Though picket fencing is very traditional, we would also consider it decorative as it is mainly used for front garden fencing.

 You can explore our range of traditional fence panels in stock here.


Decorative Fence Panels

Forest Garden 6x3 Europa Montreal Fence Panel with trellis topperDecorative fencing includes European style fencing, dome topped fencing, fence panels with lattice tops or section, hit and miss fencing, tongue and groove fencing, slatted fencing and grey fence panels. As mentioned above, picket fencing, though traditional, can also be considered decorative.

Decorative fence panels add interest with a choice of flowing lines, appealing textures and modern straight lines. Many of these are also considered to be contemporary fence panels; particularly those with sleek, straight lines.

Forest Garden 6x6 Slatted Fence PanelA popular range of fence panels, we have a few article on decorative fencing: Decorative Fencing for Your Garden Design, The Slatted Fence Panels Boom 

You can explore our range of decorative fence panels in stock here.


Fence Panel Treatment

Another important consideration when buying garden fencing is the treatment the panels have undergone. All fence panels should either be dip treated or pressure treated.

What is dip treatment?

Forest Garden 6x6 Featheredge Fence PanelDip treated fence panels have been coated in preservative treatment. This protects the surface of the fence panel.

The process is cheaper than pressure treatment; therefore, the inital outlay is less. However, dip treated fencing requires annual retreatment. This requires further outlay on treatment, brushes and – most importantly for some people – time.

Most dip treated fence panels come with a 10 year guarantee against rot and fungal decay IF treated annually to support this.

What is pressure treatment?

6x6 Pressure Treated Featheredge Fence PanelPressure treatment involves placing the timber in a chamber. The chamber is emptied of air and then, using hydraulic pressure, the preservative is forced deep inside the wood.

Due to the treatment fully penetrating the timber, it does not require retreatment for 15 years. For most pressure treated panels, this results in a 15 year guarantee against rot and fungal decay – without the need for annual retreatments.

Though slightly more expensive initially, pressure treated fencing saves money and time in the long run. Put it up, leave it and it will take care of itself for over a decade.

Explore our range of pressure treated fence panels here.

Locations with Special Requirements

For the average garden, size, style and treatment are the main considerations. For other gardens, there are special requirements that need to be met.

Gardens in windy areas or noisy areas will need a little more thought put into which fence panels are best.

If you are particularly security conscious. You will also want to bear in mind the following points:


Forest Garden 6x6 Vertical Tongue and Groove Fence panel

Tips for Security Fencing

  • be aware of horizontal boards and arris rails that may be used to climb the fence
  • if you want trellis topped fencing, growing prickly climbers such as roses which will deter thieves
  • trellis topped fencing is less likely to hold the weight of a burglar
  • opt for solid fencing which doesn’t provide a view into your garden
  • don’t leave bins or furniture where it can be used as an access step


Your Budget

Forest Garden 6x3 Closeboard Fence PanelWood is a natural product and, as such, is susceptible to knots, gaps and natural movement with changing temperatures.

Opting for fully framed fence panels such as closeboard fencing, tightly interlocking fencing such as tongue and groove fence panels or specialised fencing such as acoustic fence panels will minimise these issues. This will incur a greater initial outlay but may result in longer lasting fencing.

That being said, overlap fencing has been a firm favourite in British gardens for decades. Installed well – with careful consideration of fence posts, gravel boards, post caps and treatment – lap fence panels will serve you well and is a more budget-friendly choice.


Fencing Accessories

Fence panels, fence post and gravel boardBuying garden fencing isn’t all about fence panels. You will need fencing accessories too.

If you are building a new fence, you will need fence posts. You will need to decide between wooden or concrete fence posts and ensure you opt for the correct height.

As well as fence posts, other accessories need consideration. Do you want to use post caps to protect the top of the posts? Do you want to use gravel boards to prevent your fence panels rotting? Do you need brackets?

For a more detailed exploration of these choices, read the dedicated article: What Fencing Accessories Do I Need?


Installing Your Fencing

So, you’ve checked your garden boundary, selected your fence panels and chosen your fencing accessories. Now you need to install your garden fencing.

For all the guidance and advice you need to install your fence with our comprehensive guide: Your Guide to Installing Fence Panels (To Be Released Soon).

If you are ready to start shopping, you’ll find our huge range of garden fencing here: Buy Fencing Direct. Don’t forget to call our Customer Service Team if you have any queries.