How To Install A Backyard Wood Fence To Support Your Vine Plants

Posted on: 24 May 2016

If it is time to install a new wooden fence around your yard, you don't have to leave the wood as-is. You can upgrade your fence to a vine-covered, flowering fence. Here are instructions to help you build your fence and install the hardware needed to grow vine plants upon it.

Install the Fence Posts

First, decide where you want to install your new wooden fence. You will need to install the corner fence posts first, so with a shovel or post hole digger, dig a hole in the ground for each corner post. Each hole should be deep enough for 1/3 of the length of the post to sit inside. 

Place a post in the hole and fill the hole around the post with dry mix bagged concrete. Use a level on the post to make sure it is set in the hole straight. Run a hose over the dry mix concrete allowing the moisture to seep through the concrete all the way around the post. Repeat this process installing the remaining corner posts. Allow the concrete to cure fully following the bagged concrete's instructions.

Next, run a length of string between the corner posts, tied and positioned one foot from the bottom of each post to mark your fence line and to help you position the middle posts. It is recommended to space your fence posts from six to eight feet apart, so decide how far apart you want yours installed. Dig each post hole along the string guideline, spaced every six to eight feet apart. Follow the same method to install the middle posts using the same method you used for installing the corner posts. 

Install the Rails and Fence Boards

Attach two rails between each fence post; the upper rail just below the top of each post and the lower rail approximately six inches from the ground. You can use a fence post bracket and screws to secure the ends of the rails to the posts, or you can secure the rails directly onto the posts with wood screws. Use a level to make sure you install the rails straight. 

Install the first fence board vertically next to a post, lining up the bottom of the board with the ground. Check the board's alignment with a carpenter's level. Then, nail the board onto the top and bottom rail, using two nails at each end of the board. Repeat this with the remaining boards. 

Prepare the Fence for Vines

Now you have your wood fence installed, you can get it ready to support vine plants. Measure from the ground at two and four feet on each fence post, then attach metal screw eyes at these points on the wood. 

Tie a plastic-covered clothesline wire on the first four-foot high screw eye, and run it down the length of the fence, tying it onto every four-foot high screw eye. Tie it to the last screw eye and cut the clothesline wire. Repeat this process by attaching the clothesline wire to the two-foot high screw eyes. Make sure you pull the clothesline wire as tight as possible to provide support to the hanging vines.

Select and Plant the Vines

Depending on what region you live in, there are several types of climbing vine plants and flowers you can choose from for your fence, such as clematis, honeysuckle, Chinese wisteria vine, and Virginia creeper. Visit a local nursery to find out what types do well in your climate.

Prepare the soil by mixing in some bagged compost mulch, using a rotary tiller or a shovel. The compost will feed and help the plants adjust to their new environment. Next, space your potted plants along your fence line to your liking. One by one, dig a hole for each plant's roots, roughly the size of its pot. Then, remove the plant from its pot by holding the plant pot-side up and gently pulling the plant out. Place the plant inside the hole and fill the dirt around the roots, gently pressing the soil together. Last, water your plants.

As your vine plants grow, gently wrap the vines around the clothesline wire to help them grow upon it. Soon you will have a vine-covered fence. For more information on improving the look of your back yard, look for hardscape services in your area.