Selecting Materials for Your Garden Walls and Fences

Before starting working on your garden, it is essential to think about the material you want to use in your garden walls and fences that will best suit your requirements. Hereunder is given a list of material mostly used in Garden wall construction and fences.

Stone Walls

Stones used in walls are of different types and their appearance largely depends on the use and type.

Dry stone walls usually don’t have any mortar. These are thick towards the base and retain soil at one side for stability. In some cases, a backward lean (a batter) is needed for extra stability, if the wall is higher than 450 mm (18 inches).

Mortared stone walls, on the other hand, are relatively stronger and more stable. No backward lean is required for them. Two stone wide walls usually have a smooth face on both sides while one stone wide wall has a smooth or fair face on one side. Manufactured stones are also available to build such walls.

Brick Walls

Bricks walls are also available in different styles and are always mortared. They require a considerable concrete foundation. In case your bricks are not frost resistant, engineering bricks can be used on the top of the wall or above ground level. Some sort of coping or tile creasing would be of great help. Both engineering walls and coping will give you a choice to add character to the wall. A stone and brick combination would give an attractive look to your wall.

Rendered Block Walls

Rendered block are comparatively more economical than brick. They are more prone to dampness and therefore measures should be taken to keep the dampness away from creeping into the blocks and push off rendering. Stippled finish (Tyrolean) or normal paint can be used to stain the rendered surface.

Screen Blocks

These are also used in garden walls and are see-through patterned blocks available in a large variety in the market. These are thin and weak walls that require regular piers.

Timber Walls

These are used as a free-standing like in a raised bed, or in retaining wall in front of a bank. The drawback with them is they give off tar in hot conditions and perish. Telegraph or wooden poles can also be used in the same manner.

Timber Screens

Different forms of simple or ornate trellises are included in timber screens. These are available in different designs and colors, which enable a designer to choose a right one according to his requirements.


Timber Panels

Timber panels usually include close boarding with vertical feather-edged boards; overlapping larch strips (horizontally); and interwoven strips (mainly horizontal.


The most common timber fence type is a passlisade that is made from close boarding mounted on arris rails between posts. Other fences are ranch rails with horizontal planks or rails; diagonal intermittent laths on a timber frame; posts and horizontal rails (typical paddock fencing); ‘hit and miss’ with vertical planks; ‘hit and miss’ with horizontal planks and chestnut fencing where vertical pieces of chestnut are held by two or three horizontal twisted wires.

Wire & Steel

Posts and strained horiĀ­zontal wires; chain link; wire or chicken netting; stock fencing are included in wire fencing. Steel includes wrought iron and vertical railing.

Natural Screens

Bamboo, reed, woven willow, woven hazel, heather and so on are part of natural screens.

It is important to keep these considerations in mind for the designer.