Best Privacy Fence Materials

Privacy Fences: A Variety of Styles from our Bay Area Fence Pro’s

A privacy fence defines the boundaries of your property and also discourages prying eyes and

wandering feet, both human and animal. The purpose a privacy fence serves largely determines

the materials used and the style of it. They can be constructed from various materials and

textures including wood, rock, vinyl and fabric. The size of the space you want to make private

plays a large part in what style of privacy fence you’ll want to build.

You may or may not need privacy fencing all around your property. To determine just where you

want it and how much of it you will need, experiment by stretching old sheets or painter’s drop

cloths to poles planted in weighted buckets or flowerpots. You can move these around the yard

and play with different configurations for a pleasing arrangement. After all, nothing says that

privacy fences must be built in a straight line. Try building alcoves along the fence line or


Always check with your local zoning authorities before constructing a privacy fence. Some

neighborhoods have height or material restrictions.


Wood privacy fences come in multiple styles and configurations. Different ways of layering and

stacking boards changes the appearance and style of the fence. Six-foot high fence boards that

are tightly settled vertically against each other offer not only privacy, but also wind and noise

barriers. To make the fence even higher, if necessary, you can build it on top of a two-foot high

block wall or add desired widths of lattice board to add height to top of the fence.

Basket weave fencing is made from lateral strips of wood and is crisscrossed or woven to make a

design. Thicker boards create a rustic look while thin strips of woven boards present an Asian


Rough-hewn and weathered posts are rustic and sturdy and the texture adds interest to an

otherwise plain fence.

Cedar lattice panels attached to posts give privacy and while allowing air to flow through. Lattice

also gives climbing plants something to cling to, adding green and texture to a flat surface.

Many styles of wood panels ranging in sizes from six to eight feet high and three to six feet wide

can be purchased as home improvement or landscaping stores, making them easy to install for

do-it- yourselfers.


Many privacy fence styles that are traditionally made from wood can be replicated with stark

white or wood-colored vinyl. A durable and low maintenance material, vinyl has a modern, clean

look and usually comes in easy-to-install panels.

Strips of vinyl can also be woven through the links of a plain a chain link fence is a practical and

utilitarian alternative to more expensive types of fencing.


Metal fencing, while tall and strong, does not lend much visual privacy on its own. However,

coupled with tall green plants and vines, metal fencing has design elements that make it

appropriate for some homes.

Metal trellises interspaced throughout a yard will invite vegetation to climb and cover its

openings, creating pockets of privacy and suppress noisy environments. Three trellises hinged

together will make for restive alcove or secretive reading nook in large or open gardens.


Trees and evergreen bushes can soften the starkness of plain wood or vinyl fences. Strategically

planted and mixed, they make natural and beautiful privacy screens by themselves. Using trees

and bushes may also get around local zoning laws that regulate fencing heights and types.

Hedges are another natural barrier to inquisitive neighbors and suburban noises. Some hedges

grow quite large, and again, may provide privacy where man-made materials may be prohibited.

Flowering hedges that bloom seasonally provide color and fragrance. Using plants and hedges is

eco-friendly and may be more cost effective than unnatural materials.

References used for this article include, Black and Decker Fence Building books, the Backyard

Gardener: Fence Design, and my years of experience remodeling properties and making yards


If you’re looking to enhance the outdoor area in your Bay Area Backyard give us a call today!

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