This spring our big project was putting in a fence around our vegetable garden. We've always wanted to add a fence, but it became a necessity this year to act as a deterrent for the chickens when they're out foraging around the yard.
When debating different options, we kept coming back to a picket fence. At my childhood home, we always had a white picket fence around our yard, so this project brought back a host of memories for me!
Last year our vegetable garden was sized 20x40, which worked really well for us, so we settled on 24x40 when working on our fence plan.
That size meant just under 300 pickets! The boards are reclaimed wood, so Justus actually had to cut the picket on every single board and then I sanded every single picket... and eventually painted every single picket. Whew, yes, it has been labor intensive! But oh, I love it. The reclaimed wood, while not perfect, definitely lent a feeling of this fence having been here for a while.
When looking at a picket fence, I never imagined there would be so many details we would need to iron out first. Where would the rails be placed (to the inside, outside or center of post)? Would the posts be visible? How tall would the posts be? How tall would the pickets be? How much space should be left under the pickets? As we were looking at different options, we just happened to come across an old picture of my aforementioned childhood picket fence, and knew its design was perfect for our fence. As you can see, the posts are only visible from the inside, and the rails are placed to the outside of the posts, so it was easy to nail the pickets on.
We spent hours (yes, hours) making sure our posts and pickets were perfectly square and level.
One of my favorite details was adding this old iron gate. This came from my brother's previous 100 year old home, and Justus really had to warm up to the idea of using it, but I think it's safe to say that we both love how it turned out!
I love its old time charm and character.
Once our fence was in place, Justus used old bricks from our home's previous chimney to create a little landing and purposely gave it a bit of a rustic look - the reclaimed wood, old iron gate, and old bricks all working together to create a fence that fit with our home.
The garden remained in the same location as previous years - convenient to our back door and kitchen.
As you can see, I only have a small portion of the garden in. This weekend I added some tomatoes and peppers. I have a lot of work to do these next few weeks! (smile)
The back end of the garden, where the spring peas are growing...
Although the chickens are perfectly capable of flying over the fence, so far (knock on wood), they've stayed out and we've been very strict about keeping the gate closed!
We're so happy with the way the fence turned out, particularly since vegetable gardening is such a part of our lives now. And I can't help but smile every time I look at it - thinking of my girls growing up with a white picket fence, just as I did. (smile)