Wooden fence in backyard

Fences vs Hedges: Which One is Better for Your Home?

It’s a given that people want privacy in their homes. It’s not just about prying eyes invading your space, but it’s also about blocking out the sight and chatter of neighbours and passersby.

There are various ways of creating privacy in your home. One way is by installing a fence around your house. There’s also an option to plant a hedge. Choosing whether to build a fence or a hedge will depend on your preference and the nature of your surroundings. Here are several factors that will help influence your decision.

Appearance

Fences and hedges help enhance the look of your house from the outside. A fence gives your property a neat look, though not as natural as what hedges offer. Adding shrubs and flowers along the fence softens the appearance, and painting it with neutral colours allows more natural blending in the landscape.

Hedges provide a more natural look to the garden. You can choose different flowers and shrubs to add to your hedges, depending on what suits your needs and the appearance of the house. The variety of available foliage allows you to customise the hedge whenever you want to change the design.

Privacy

A fence becomes an instant visual screen, and it helps prevents neighbours and passersby from peering into your house. The thick wall of vegetation for hedges also reduces the risk of anyone invading your privacy, but they usually take three to seven years to reach a sufficient height to become a privacy screen.

Installation

You can install a fence or plant a hedge on your own, although it’s worth the cost to hire a professional to complete the installation efficiently and promptly. In towns like Newbury and Guildford, you’ll find tree surgeons that install hedges and fences in addition to their tree removal services.

Materials used for fence installations are wood, brick, vinyl and chain link. Installations take an average of three to five days, depending on the length of the fence and the materials used.

Planting hedges is similar to planting a new shrub or tree, and the installation process takes an average of 15 to 20 hours for 210 feet. What will affect the installation is the levelling of soil and the removal of weeds. The materials required are plants and fertiliser, which are relatively cheaper compared to the materials in fences.

Environmental Concerns

Cutting hedge

Hedges are a more environmentally friendly option since you’re using plants and flowers. Not only do they create a barrier for privacy, but they also help in improving the air quality of the area. However, that doesn’t mean fences are environmentally friendly. Bamboo, biocomposite materials and centennial wood are some materials you can use to build a sustainable fence.

Maintenance

A fence is a permanent improvement to the property, and it requires minimal care after it’s installed. Materials like chain link, treated wood and vinyl last up to 20 years without maintenance. For painted fences, repainting is done at least every year. On the other hand, a hedge requires more maintenance because the foliage requires regular watering, trimming and fertilising. This routine should be done more often during dry spells.

Noise and Dust Pollution

Hedges work better than fences when blocking out noise and dust outside the property. As mentioned above, the plants provide cleaner and more breathable air, filtering the dust from outside. A dense hedge also reduces the noise from roads and adjacent properties by up to 50 per cent.

Most fence materials do little to control noise and dust from neighbouring areas. Consider using brick or thick wood if you plan to factor in noise control when installing a fence.

Fences and hedges help in preventing strangers from entering your property. They also establish boundaries around your home and make the property more attractive to passersby and potential homeowners. Consider your needs and budget to determine if you’ll opt for installing a fence or planting a hedge.