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  • Writer's pictureDawn Bly

Privacy fence or chainlink?

Chain-link fence functioning as a trellis
Our chain-link fence in high summer.

My Lovely Assistant--

Years ago we struggled with whether to install a wooden or plastic privacy fence or to go with a chain-link fence for the backyard. I am glad we decided to go with the chain-link fence! Here's why:

  1. Fewer mosquito problems. Multiple people who have wooden privacy fences have complained to me that their fences create a dead-air zone, allowing mosquitoes to congregate freely in their yard, preventing their pets and children from enjoying the property. Our fence, even when fully draped with mature plants during summertime, still allows enough air movement to keep the majority of the mosquitoes pushed out.

  2. Less maintenance. Our fence has been in place for ten years, and we have never had to do a thing to it. No replacements, no repairs, no staining, no cleaning. And it is still the same color and has never faded to an ugly wood tone.

  3. Instant trellises. This was my biggest reason for selecting chain-link over wood. We grow and have grown clematis, pole beans, sweet peas, grapes, tomatoes and kiwi vines on our fence. Our neighbors rarely use their yards in the cold season (we are the same), so privacy is not an issue. During the warm months when we are using the yard and things are growing, our fences are covered with green, providing a verdant, living private space. The shade provided by this green wall is much cooler than that provided by a non-living wall. Trellises provided by a permanent fence have been much more stable than stand-alone trellises that I have used.

The only real maintenance we have had to do is to trim back the perennial plants such as the kiwi, clematis and grape vines in the winter, which has nothing to do with the fence, and more with our country-living in the suburbs' lifestyle. I find waiting until a nice, sunny January or February day to do this chore makes for a pleasant afternoon working on my vitamin D creation. Hope you enjoy your backyard, too!

Have a beautiful day!

The fence in winter, grapevines trimmed

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