Whether you have Japanese ancestry, or you simply have an affinity for Japanese art and culture, putting up a Japanese-style fence in your backyard can increase the beauty of your backyard space. In addition to defining and containing spaces, Japanese-style fences often also allow for outside observers to get a glimpse of the landscape that is awaiting inside.
Build a basic board fence and then run a roof-like cap around its perimeter. In the space between the roofing and the fence top, you can add some decorative horizontal wooden slats. According to Peter A. Kirsch-Korff, a wood arbor builder who has been featured in HGTV's Landscapers' Challenge, the particular type of wood you use is not very important, as you can always paint and stain it to match or contrast certain elements in your yard. Reddish shades such as ochre are prominent colors in wooden Japanese architecture; however, darker, bolder colors such as black and green can also be effective if the majority of the elements in your outdoor space have lighter colors.
Use short, skinny stalks of bamboo to make small garden enclosures, or use tall thick talks to put up perimeter fencing around your yard. Bamboo's wide array of sizes allows for flexible design. Bamboo also provides natural colors and textures and is an environmentally friendly choice for its ability to grow fast and repopulate.
Build a living fence out of plants. According to The Helpful Gardener, some of the best plants that mimic Japanese style are cherry trees, maples and pines. Incorporating other Japanese elements in and around your fence, such as stone lanterns, will help further define its style.
Include a window or open space in your design. Ideally, your window, which can be as simple as a space left between boards, bamboo or plants, should provide a vista of something off in the distant landscape, such as a mountain or lake, or if you do not live near either, a view of a nearby tree or field.
- Photo Credit bamboo image by fotografiche.eu from Fotolia.com
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