Published on Wed, 03/07/2018 - 1:08pm
“As winter wares into spring, it’s the perfect time for a refresher course in proper fence maintenance.”
By Aly McClure
Boundaries are one of life’s biggest necessities - personally and physically - but ironically can be one of the most challenging things to create or maintain. They aren’t something you put up one time and walk away; it is a labor of love over a lifetime. Occasionally you may even need to shift them, to create new pastures or to restore old ones. Fences are an item that not only serves a physical purpose but can also add a tremendous amount of aesthetic to a property that is well maintained.
If cared for a little at a time consistently, fences used as boundaries are easily maintained. A four-step process as simple as this can take you a long way.
1. Check and repair wires, tapes, or boards regularly upon notice of failure. By keeping essential fence repair items with you, this task will never require much more than replacing what is broken quickly.
2. Burn or spray the fence rows. Two to three times a year, depending on your geographical location, burning or spraying your rows can significantly reduce the amount of time it will take you to maintain the undergrowth that can quickly grow out of control.
3. Always clip saplings and new bushes. These are two things that, if kept up with, will save you a world of trouble but if ignored will create one of the biggest headaches you can encounter, possibly even causing you to need to replace entire sections of fence at a time. Tree and brush growth threaten the strength and integrity of your fencing making it even easier for livestock to escape to ‘greener pastures.’
4. Replace fence posts before they become an issue. You are an expert in your field; if you’re following proper fence maintenance schedules, you will know when it is time to replace a post. Do so as soon as it’s noticeable to avoid any escapes or injuries.
Intact and working fencing is vital to keeping your farm animals safe and your neighbor’s friends. Walking your fence line regularly, checking for damage and repairing promptly. Replace old posts and tighten any loose ones. Makes sure gates are set and working correctly.
A clean and robust fence row will speak volumes about the maintenance your property and the pride you take in what you do. First impressions matter and your fence is one of the first things people will notice. Take a little time every week to check these three areas, and I promise you will thank me later. A fence that is properly cared for will last a lifetime.