Top 3 Fencing Materials for Vertical Gardening

Top 3 Fencing Materials for Vertical Gardening

Article by Dave Nichols

Due to the shrinking size of yards and outdoor living spaces in real estate lots, the vertical gardening trend has been on the rise, especially amongst homeowners who want to grow their own food. Though trellises, arbors, and pergolas were popular even before vertical gardening had a name, there are other materials and methods that can be utilized to extend gardens upwards. Fences, such as wood fences, vinyl fencing, and the ever-present chain link fence, can be used as support structures for vertical gardens. A vertical garden on fences allows the garden to grow upwards while enhancing a dull fence.

Fence Materials for Vertical Gardening

Though just about any fencing material can provide support and structure for climbing plants, some are more suited for the job than others. Keep in mind the weight and size of plants that you plan to grow as you don’t want heavy plants weighing down your fence.

Here are some of the most common fencing materials and how suitable they are for upright gardening:

Chain link fencing. The mesh design of a chain link fence provides plenty of grips for climbing plants and the metal won’t rot or rust from direct contact with your plants. All you have to do is train your plants to grow up the chain link fence and items such as peas, vine cucumbers, and pole beans do very well in this type of environment. Upright gardening is actually a great way to hide an unattractive chain link fence underneath beautiful plants as well.

Wood fences. Due to the moisture that plants continuously hold, vertical gardening techniques for wood fences differ from chain link fences as wood fences are more susceptible to rotting. Buying flowerpot brackets that can be screwed into the fence boards is a safe solution for vertical gardening on a wood fence. Then you can use pots to form a vertical garden. Plastic gardening pots are preferable as they are lighter and won’t add more weight to your fence.

Vinyl fencing. Like chain link fences, vinyl fencing is water-proof, but unlike chain link fences, it has a smooth surface which doesn’t provide toeholds for climbing plants. Leaning a small structure, such as a trellis, against your vinyl fencing can encourage vertical plant growth though.

A feasible solution for homeowners facing upright gardening challenges due to their wood or vinyl fencing is having a pocket garden. What a pocket garden entails is having an item that is similar to those shoe holders you hang on your door, but instead it has pockets filled with dirt and plants and can be hung on vinyl or wood fences instead.

Vertical Garden Plant Ideas

Plants that grow well on chain link fences include: pole beans, peas, cucumbers, grapes, and lighter varieties of melons, gourds, and winter squash. Adding plants like climbing roses, honeysuckle, wisteria, and clematis can add a hint of color to your vertical garden. Tie the vines in place along the fence so they don’t bear all of the weight alone.

Pocket gardens are great for growing strawberries, bulbs, succulents, ferns, azaleas, hydrangea, lettuce, and Japanese Andromeda. Theme gardens, such as an herb garden, tea garden, perfume garden, spring or summer flowers, same colored plants, or plants from the same species, are also a fun idea to incorporate into your fence vertical garden.

You will be delighted with your vertical garden, and perhaps will take up all your fence space growing all sorts of lovely plants. Don’t forget to water your vertical garden from the top of the fence, and keep up on maintaining it so you can enjoy the flora from season to season.

About the Author

Visit our website to read more about the top fencing options for vertical gardening, including wood fences, vinyl fencing, and the chain link fence. is a full service fence contractor and material supplier in the Pacific Northwest and offers design, installment, and maintenance services and advice for your fences and decks.

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