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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mid-century landscaping: fencing

This is the final post in a series about mid-century landscaping, which has included perennials, shrubs and trees and groundcover.

When I was a kid in the 50s and 60s, we had chain link fence with cocker spaniel gate decorations, and we were thrilled to have it. These days, many restored mid-century homes have updated fencing, using a variety of materials and styles.

Here are a few examples of the kind of amazing attention to exterior detail that makes these homes true showcases of mid-cetury beauty.

All the pictures above from


  1. We had the grape stake fencing, and basket weave on the other side.

    Fences were only 5' tall!!! At least the basket weave side was. I guess that was to encourage being friendly with your neighbors?

    The grape stake finally came down about 20 years ago, for chain link (which is fine, unless like me your neighbor doesn't plant a thing to cover it), and the basket weave came down about 10 years ago for a cement block wall. Fence in the back is standard 8" boards, done a year ago.

  2. @1950sarh: I have a Plain Jane 8' wooden privacy fence that was put up by the previous owner...a young guy who loved to party. It started off very straight and even on one side of the yard, but by the time he got to the final side, he must have been drunk, because it's an uneven mess. I keep saying I'm going to tear it down and start over, but I haven't.

  3. we have a concrete compound for every house in india...i used to fancy bamboo fences ...haing seen them here...i think they look marvelous

  4. Great post! I've been looking at different fencing options for just a small stretch of our yard (between our house and where the backyard fence starts). We had a large chain link fence, which was ugly but period appropriate with the "M" shapes at the top, but the Curb Appeal people hated it, and asked us if they could remove it. We said sure, not realizing that they wouldn't replace it. Oops. Fencing is just so expensive! I've been looking at the living wall idea though, and I think that might be amazing (albeit time consuming...):

  5. @adriane: The living wall idea is spectacular. Around here, several fast-growing plants could probably cover it completely in a summer...things like trumpet vine or honeysuckle. However, they can grow so much that sometimes you want to kick yourself for planting them.

  6. Still, the plan is to get them outside as soon as possible after germinating--these should go out later this week, once they have their first set of true leaves.
    pvc privacy fence