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How Gardens Have Changed in the Last 100 Years

By | Industry News | No Comments

Gardens have always been an important part of our homes – whether we’re looking at 100 years ago or 1 year ago. These days, many people see their garden as another room, serving as an extension to the main house.

Nowadays, a garden could be the reason why a house is sold quickly or left on the market for years – but has this always been the case?

How much have gardens changed? Do they serve a different purpose now? We’ve taken a look at just some of the many ways that gardens have evolved over the past 100 years.

Gardens Were Used as a Food Source

In the past, it’s fair to say that gardens were mainly used as a way to provide food for the entire family. Whilst growing food is now viewed as a hobby for some, if you look back over 100 years ago, having a food source in the garden wasn’t a choice, it was essential.

This was especially true during the years that the country was at war and food was hard to come by. People needed to rely heavily on anything they could grow themselves, more specifically potatoes and vegetables. This was vital in keeping their loved ones healthy.

These days, gardens tend to be more decorative and ornamental. Of course, some people still enjoy growing their own food, but this is something that is becoming a lot less common.

People Now Have More Leisure Time

Spending time in the garden has definitely become a leisure activity for a lot of people. People have a lot more spare time than was available to previous generations, which makes gardening for fun a lot more viable. This is definitely evident in the way that garden design is now very much influenced by interior design.

Take a look at gardens around you and you’ll find that they are now a lot more stylish and modern. Fountains, ponds and statues are seen a lot more frequently, proving that with more time on their hands, people are turning their land into something a lot more attractive.

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A Wide Variety of Plants

Although plants grown today are very similar to those grown almost 100 years ago, there is now a much wider variety available, thanks to advanced plant breeding and selection. This means that our gardens are now a lot more colourful – people have the choice to be more selective, choosing the plants and flowers that they prefer.

Advanced Garden Machinery & Technology

Machinery and technology has undeniably adapted to suit our needs over the past 100 years. People want technology that will make their gardens easier to maintain without having to put in hours and hours of hard labour.

Battery powered garden machinery such as mowers and strimmers mean that almost anyone can keep their garden in good shape in an easy (and affordable) way.

Looking back, gardening was a far more physical and demanding job. Without the help of the machinery that we have today, a lot of gardening was done by hand. Therefore, it was done as a necessity rather than something enjoyable.

An Extension of the Home

As we mentioned at the beginning, many now view their gardens as being an extension of their home. This means they expect a lot more from it than people would have years ago.

The main example of this is privacy. The average back garden fence is now 6ft – providing people with a secure and safe place to spend time with their loved ones without the interference from neighbours.

This is the reason for why more and more people are choosing garden fence alternatives such as Colourfence. Available in heights of up to 2.1m, it’s the perfect option for those looking to keep the world from looking in. The entire installation process is also handled by a trained professional installer, saving you a lot of time and effort.

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So, What About The Future?

There is no telling how much gardens will continue to evolve over the next 10, 20 or 30 years. As more people look to save time on physical labour, it’s likely that we will see a bigger rise in cost effective garden solutions, such as artificial lawns, and cost effective products, such as Colourfence.

Modern and stylish features that incorporate colour, water and greenery are guaranteed to be the foundations of future gardens. We’re also looking forward to seeing what new technology comes along – it’s fair to say that technology will soon shape the entire way that gardening is carried out.

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How to Prepare Your Garden For Spring

By | Garden Tips | No Comments

For a lot of homeowners, gardening is something that isn’t even thought about about until spring is well underway. But do you really need to wait until spring has sprung before paying attention to your garden?

We believe that when it comes to getting your garden ready for spring, preparation is key! With spring just around the corner, now is the perfect time to break out your tools, put on your gardening gloves and get busy outside!

There are plenty of things you can do to prepare for the upcoming months – here are just 6 of the things you could be doing right now!

Clean Up Any Mess Left From Winter

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Before you do anything else in your garden, it’s essential that you take some time to clean and tidy up any mess that has occurred during the winter months. Let’s be honest, it’s probably been a while since you’ve been out there for more than 10 minutes!

This means clearing away any unwelcome leaves and branches that have made their way onto your lawn or flowerbeds.

You should also remove clumps of soil or dirt that remains on your garden tools – these should be given a good wash before being used again. After all, they are going to be used a lot in the upcoming moths!

Trim Your Hedges

Ensure that your garden is looking its best by trimming back your hedges, and tidying up trees and shrubs that might be making your garden look messy and overgrown.

Getting rid of dead branches will protect your plants, whilst tidying up your plant beds will help to encourage a more robust growth of flowers and fruit going forward.

Remove Hibernating Pests

Garden pests often remain in your garden throughout the winter – you might not even realise that they are there. Although getting rid of these hibernating pests isn’t the most pleasant job, it’s definitely one of the most important ones and does need to be done early on in the year.

This involves looking out for (and removing) any slugs, snails, or aphids, which could potentially cause problems and damage your plants as they begin to grow.

Keep an eye out for pests that burrow into your compost and soil- if missed, these will have a field day with your plant roots.

Prepare Your Soil

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Healthy soil is an important component in any successful garden; it’s how your plants take in nutrients, air and moisture. Therefore it’s essential to start preparing it for the spring as soon as possible!

Spend time breaking up the dirt so that it’s able to take in a good amount of oxygen – you can do this by turning it over regularly. Adding plant food or compost will also ensure that the soil gets a generous helping of nutrients. Finish by adding organic fertilizer and raking thoroughly.

Remember; healthy soil leads to healthy growth!

Eradicate Any Lingering Weeds

Don’t let weeds become a problem in your garden – it’s essential that you keep on top of them as much as possible! This will save you a lot of time, effort and money in the long term.

By doing this before spring, you’ll eradicate them before they’ve managed to mature and take root.

After you have dug up and removed any early signs of weeds that have taken up residence, you should then take measures to ensure that they don’t grow back. You can do this by putting down a layer of cardboard onto the ground and adding a 3-inch layer of mulch. This will discourage weeds from making an unwelcome reappearance.

Carry Out General Maintenance Tasks

Identifying and fixing any general maintenance jobs in your garden is the final thing you can do to prepare your garden for spring.

You’re more likely to spend time in a garden that is aesthetically pleasing, which is why carrying out mundane jobs such as painting or cleaning can really make a difference.

This could also include finally getting around to replacing that faulty fence or gate that you’ve been putting off for a good few months. Creating a safe and secure place for your whole family to spend time in should be your number one priority.

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If you are looking to replace your garden fence or gate before the warmer weather hits, please contact Colourfence today!

2017-garden-trends

Top 5 Garden Trends for 2017

By | Garden Tips | No Comments

Choosing the right design for your garden is becoming just as important as decorating the interior of your house. Modern gardens are now seen as an extension of the home and therefore you need to give the design careful consideration before making any decisions.

Just like with interior design, garden trends change often and quickly. What’s “in” one year might be “out” by the next.

If you’re looking to update your garden before the warmer weather arrives, we’ve put together our top 5 picks of the garden trends that are guaranteed to be popular this year.

The Natural Look

This year is set to see the return of the more “natural” looking garden design, but what does this really mean?

For a lot of people, the natural look is favoured for its use of more traditional materials such as timber and wood, instead of the usual man made composites. Soft and warm colours are being used to create paths and patios.
Whilst it boasts a DIY look and feel, this style is carefully designed to look this way. The idea is to create something authentic and organic that will hopefully be timeless too!

 

Outdoor Kitchens

Outdoor kitchens are a trend that has never really taken off in the UK, mostly due to the British weather having a reputation for being fickle and unpredictable. However, could 2017 finally be the year that outdoor cooking becomes a real thing? Those in the know certainly seem to be think so!

It seems that more and more people are now looking to create an area in their garden that is solely dedicated to cooking and eating(and entertaining!) We don’t just mean a fancy BBQ either – people are investing in high quality outdoor sinks, fridges, pizza ovens and beautiful work surfaces.

If this is something you’re interested in creating, we suggest adding an outdoor seating area too. It will be the perfect place to socialise with your friends and family during the warm summer months.

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Colour Blocking

Colour blocking is a term that is often used when discussing fashion trends, but has now made its way into the world of garden design. It’s an inexpensive way to add something a little different to garden.

It involves using blocks of colours to make a bold and visual impact to an otherwise traditional outdoor space. There are a number of different ways in which this trend can be incorporated into your garden, such as coloured tiles, colourful plants and flowers, or even by specially painting a specific area to highlight it.

The colours you use are completely down to personal choice, with yellows, greens and pinks being by far the most widely used.

 

Lighting

With pubs and restaurants making lighting a huge part of their outdoor space design, it’s not surprising that it’s going to be huge in home garden design this year. And the best thing? Picturesque lighting doesn’t have to be expensive!

With energy efficient lighting becoming the norm, you can turn your outside space into a magical wonderland for half the price. From solar powered to rechargeable, there are plenty of options to choose from to ensure that you choose what works best for your garden.

Fairy lights are our favourite option by far. Whether hung over trees or perfectly arranged across your patio, fairy lights can give your garden a soft and glowing makeover that will WOW all your loved ones.

 

Coloured Garden Fencing 

A garden fence is an important fixture in most gardens, whether for security, privacy or aesthetic reasons. For homeowners that still have standard wooden fences that seem to cause them nothing but trouble, this 2017 trend might be the one you should really consider following.

Coloured fencing, such as the fantastic product offered at Colourfence, is set to be huge this year. Offering garden lovers something a little more modern than the traditional wooden styles, you can choose an attractive and contemporary style that fits in better with your personality.

From cosy creams to rustic greens, you can find a fence that blends in perfectly with the design of your garden – or one that really stands out!

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If you would like more information on our modern and high quality fencing collection, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.

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7 Ways to Create a Child Friendly Garden

By | Garden Tips | No Comments

Ensuring that a garden is child friendly is a huge priority for parents, especially for those who love spending a lot of time outdoors.

You want to be able to enjoy your garden, which is something that you can’t do if you have to constantly watch out for potential hazards. From your choice of grass to the type of garden fence installed, it’s essential that you keep your little ones in mind at all times.

Looking for some child friendly ideas to create a garden that both you and your kids can happily spend time in? Here are some ideas to help you turn your garden into a safe haven for all the family.

Artificial Grass

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When it comes to choosing between artificial grass and the real thing, we believe that parents should definitely consider choosing the former. Known for being durable and tough, it’s the perfect choice for children who like to play outside all year round.
Not only do you not have to worry about children slipping on muddy or soggy grass, it also means saying goodbye to those pesky grass stains that appear on children’s clothes so often.

 

High Quality Fencing 

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A garden fence has many important uses and therefore should be given careful consideration before purchasing. For those with children, it’s even more important that you find one that offers you both security and safety.

With children running around the garden on a daily basis, you need something in place to protect them from wandering off into other neighbours’ gardens, or even worse, into any nearby roads. You need garden fencing that offers you high quality and peace of mind.

Wooden fences are traditionally favoured, but they damage easily, leaving children susceptible to injuries from splinters or broken panels. Looking into alternatives, such as Colourfence, can save you money and give you that extra security for your little ones! Splinter free and low maintenance, they make for an ideal solution.

 

Child Friendly Flowers

Keeping your eyes on small children at all times when they are playing outside is often easier said than done. No matter how hard you try, children have a habit of wandering off and getting up to mischief before you’ve even clocked that they’ve moved. Therefore, it’s important to be aware of dangerous flowers and the hazards of small children eating them.

Garden favourites such as Lily-of-the-Valley, Philodendron and Yew should be avoided at all times, as they are poisonous and can cause an irritant of the eyes and skin.

Stick to plants and flowers such as Lavenders, Daises and Sunflowers! Not only are they super safe for children, they look beautiful too.

 

A Secure Pond

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Building a wild life pond in your garden can really make it stand out, but how do you go about creating one when you have small children to worry about? Don’t worry, you don’t have to miss out, you just need to make sure that you take all the necessary precautions.

A lot of people install grids or netting over their pond to divert curious minds, whilst others prefer to fence or gate it off completely until the children are old enough to learn about water safety.

 

Anti-Slip Decking

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Good quality decking can give your garden the WOW factor, but how can you ensure that it is child friendly at all times? When the weather is particularly wet, decking can become slippery, making it a nightmare for those wanting to spend time in the garden with their children as soon as the sun comes out.

Anti-slip decking is ideal for children who love to be outside even when the weather hasn’t been fantastic! Stylish, safe and secure, it’s worth spending that extra little bit of money.

 

Lock Up Your Garden Tools

 

Creating a child friendly garden isn’t just about installing the right features – you also need to make sure you’re doing everything you can to keep it a danger free zone. This includes making sure that your garden tools are safely stored away in a secure place when not in use.

Sharp tools such as lawnmowers and garden forks should be locked away to prevent your children from accessing them. Children are curious by nature and will think nothing of making them their new toys! Garden chemicals should also be locked away in the same manner.

When using garden tools with children around, it’s imperative that you don’t let them out of your sight or leave them lying around.

 

Create Child Specific Spaces

 

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When thinking about redesigning your garden, it’s always a good idea to keep your children in mind. Designing specific areas for them to spend time in is the perfect way to keep them occupied and entertained when out in the garden.

From creating a sandbox, to making space for games such as football, it can make all the difference for your children. It doesn’t have to take up too much space either – just corner off a section of the garden that is their zone!

Having children doesn’t mean you have to compromise on the perfect garden. By keeping in mind the 7 pieces of advice outlined above, you can easily create a fantastic child friendly space that everyone can enjoy!

If you’re looking to update your fencing to something that is child friendly and stylish, please don’t hesitate to contact Colourfence today on 0800 6444113. Colourfence offers a garden fence that is high quality, secure and durable – you won’t have to worry about splinters again!

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7 Signs That It’s Time To Replace Your Wooden Fence

By | Garden Tips | No Comments

Most homeowners would like to think that their garden fence is something that will last them years and years. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case.

Whilst a modern and high quality fence will last you well over a decade, this isn’t always true for a lot of traditional wooden fencing. Endless maintenance issues can make keeping your fence in good condition a complete nightmare.

So when is it time to put away your tools and realise that it might be time to replace instead of repair? Here are 7 signs to look out for that could mean it’s finally time to invest in a new fence.

Your Fence Has Started to Lean

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As your fence starts to age, it will gradually start to weaken. Whilst not always noticeable at first, you will eventually begin to spot signs of its decline. More specifically, a lot of wooden fences begin to distinctively lean to one side or another. This can become a common and frustrating problem during the winter, when the constant high winds and heavy rain can play havoc with the already weak structure.
Whilst this can be temporary “fixed” by adjusting the fence posts, it’s unlikely that this will undo the damage that has already been carried out. It’s definitely more cost effective to replace it with something stronger and more durable.

You’ve Noticed Signs of Rotting

Rotting is often one of the first signs that there is something seriously wrong with your wooden fence. Favoured for their rustic and traditional look, it can be disheartening to discover the onset of rotting.

Unfortunately, despite putting a lot of time and effort into keeping your fence in good condition, wood is very vulnerable to rotting as time goes on.

As the decay sets in, your fence will quickly begin to deteriorate, leaving it looking less attractive and a lot weaker than before. If caught in time, you can sometimes prevent the rot from spreading throughout the entire fence. However, it’s not often spotted until it’s too late. When this happens, there is no way to reverse the damage and the only option is to replace with something new.

 

The Wood Has Started to Discolour

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Wood that was once bright and visually aesthetic can easily become dull and discoloured over time. This is definitely true for wood that hasn’t been properly preserved in the correct way.

There are several reasons for why wooden fencing begins to discolour, but most of the time, it’s due to factors such as sun exposure, rust or the paintwork beginning to fade. Treating the fence could potentially slow down the discolouring but it’s unlikely to turn back time – it won’t ever be the same colour that it was beforehand.

 

The Fence is Missing Some of It’s Panels

Cracked, chipped or completely missing panels are a clear indication that your fence is in need of something more than just a little TLC. Not only does this make for an unsightly fence, it can also cause security issues, as well as safety problems for those with young children or small pets.

You could replace the missing panel but there is no guarantee that it won’t happen again, or that it won’t end up being extremely expensive!

 

There is a Clear Indication of Wear & Tear

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It doesn’t matter how much time you spend maintaining and repairing your fence, there are just some things that you can’t prevent from happening. This includes the wear and tear from every day life. From your kids repeatedly kicking a ball at the fence, to your cat or dog using it as a scratching post or chew toy, these instances of repetitive damage can bring your once perfect fence to a premature end.

In this case, we would save yourself the time and effort and think about getting it replaced as soon as possible!

 

It No Longer Fits in with the Aesthetics of Your Garden or Home

Realising that you need a new fence doesn’t always have to be a result of something going wrong with it. Whilst un-repairable damage is generally the main reason behind deciding it’s time for something new, it doesn’t mean that it’s the only reason.

Some homeowners simply outgrow the current look and design of their fence. Whether it’s due to a change in the garden or an updated look of their home, some people decide a change is needed purely for aesthetic reasons.

 

The Repairs are Becoming Very Costly

Everyone likes to believe that something can easily be repaired. After all, it must be cheaper to repair than replace, right? Whilst this can be true in some cases, it isn’t always the best course of action. Carrying out repair after repair can mean the costs slowly start to creep up, meaning you might end up paying a lot more than it would cost to take it out and just buy a new one.

We suggest getting a quote from us here at Colourfence to compare the difference between repairing your old one or purchasing a brand new one from our fantastic collection.

 

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Weather Proofing Your Garden

Weather Proofing Your Garden

By | Fencing | No Comments

Recently the weather forecast has been predicting flooding and tidal surges. Last year’s strong winds and high floodwater have perhaps caused ‘weather proofing’ to be one of the Telegraph’s gardening trends for 2017.

Climate

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The world’s climate has definitely changed. Extremes are become more common and gardens are being affected. Surprisingly, plants can drown; and summer floods are worse than the winter variety. At least in winter, roots are dormant and plants can recover more easily. Coastlines are even harder on gardens; harsh winds, flooding and salt air all conspire to damage your garden.

Some solutions include clever planting, secure fixtures and landscaping. For example, raised beds can solve many climate related problems – they are also easier to weed and take care of. Seasonal pruning can reduce splintered trees and flyaway branches. Create windbreaks with pampas grass or high fences, and consider using paths to avoid churning the lawn on damp days.

Fixtures

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Firstly, treat garden furniture with sealant, or else cover it carefully. Secure poly-tunnels and greenhouses to ensure they are not devastated by high winds.

Provide cosy, weather proof shelter for outdoor animals so that they have shade in summer and protection in winter. To protect yourselves from weather, try a pergola, retractable shade or pop up tent. Alternatively, a permanent terrace is a great investment in your home and is more durable than some options.

RHS Advisor Guy Barter, advises that traditional beech and box hedges are prone to loose roots and blight respectively. This makes high quality fencing an excellent alternative. Colourfence is weather resistant, resists gales up to 130 MPH and is very durable. It is also very low maintenance, especially in comparison to hedges which need a great deal of pruning and treatment.

Planting 

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Dr Ross Cameron of the University of Sheffield has advised that gardeners turn to more flood and drought resistant plants. An easy way to do this is with ‘native planting’. Look up tree and shrub varieties native to your area – attend heritage seed swaps and ask your garden centre for hardy local greenery. Skip sub tropical plants and focus on traditional planting for more resilient gardens. Traditional English options such as salad plants, root vegetables, and brassicas can be tolerant of rain and cold.

Avoid paving too much of your garden – as this can lead to standing water and soil erosion. To improve soil drainage, use a lawn aerator and consider nitrogen feed for plants. Mulch the roots of plants to keep them moist but protected from excessive water. Plant according to your soil type to reduce the impact of adverse weather conditions.

Check out our other articles on Winter Gardening, and let us know what you think in the comments.

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4 colours

Give Your Garden a New Look With Colourfence

By | Fencing | No Comments

Colourfence is a durable, secure, high quality fencing product – and it’s also beautiful. These coloured garden fences are made from Zincalume steel. They can be complemented by garden gates, deadbolts and secure locks. You can also get gorgeous trellis sections in contrasting or matching colours. They don’t need staining or painting and are guaranteed to look incredible for 25 years. The standard width of a Colourfence section is 8ft rather than the more standard 6ft panels, and Colourfence can also be installed at your preferred height, 5ft, 6ft, or even 7ft with the appropriate permissions.

Colourfence comes in four beautiful colours; for four different looks.

Classic: Green Fencing

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Green is one of our most popular fence colours. Our green fences are made from the same tough yet beautiful material all our fencing enjoys. They can stand out or blend in as you would like; require very little maintenance and look very appealing. Our green fencing can be classic or contemporary, depending on your garden and the look you want. They can be paired with matching or contrasting trellis sections, posts and infills.

Homey: Brown Fencing

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Brown fencing has a warm, homey appeal. It comes in all sizes up to 2.1m, and can be enhanced with a new, secure fence gate in the same material. You can accessorise your brown fencing with trellis top sections – they can look especially charming in a soft cream, wound through with dusty pink roses or a strong, evergreen climber. It’s one of the more traditional fencing styles and the second most popular of our fencing colours. Blends perfectly in a cosy cottage garden.

Contemporary: Blue Fencing

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A more contemporary look, blue fences take a classic hue into an unusual setting for a gorgeous juxtaposition. The gentle Prussian tint ensures that the colour is not jarring in a traditional garden. Yet this modern fencing colour is a refreshing change in a world of typical, dull wooden fences. And, unlike cheap external paints or stains, this colour fencing won’t run or fade. They offer the same high quality of all Colourfence steel fences and look incredible in minimalist, new build gardens.

Cosy: Cream Fencing 

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Cream is a warm, cosy garden fence colour, perfect for the English countryside. Cream garden fences can be mixed and matched with posts and infills, as well as a secure new gate, or fence top trellis. As you can see, it looks fantastic paired with green or brown. When building a fence, our franchisees will put your tastes and directions at the top of their consideration. You may be concerned about the upkeep of cream fences. But like all our coloured fencing, it just needs an occasional hose down to look good.

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Home Security Month

Home Security Month: How Secure is Your Garden?

By | Fencing, Winter Gardening | 2 Comments

As the nights draw in, burglars become more opportunistic and take advantage of the early darkness. Burglaries are likely to increase by around 20% this time of year.

To remind us all to survey our home security this Autumn, October is Home Security Month. This includes your garden. Tools, statues and plants in gardens are often worth thousands, and the average value of stolen goods is £850. But we don’t secure them in the same way we would an iPad or television. Your garden is also your first line of defence against would be thieves who are targeting your home.

Weird Things People Steal

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We wrote before about how 50% of dog thefts occur from your garden. More obvious targets include expensive electronics such as mowers and gardening tools (which can be used to break into homes). Bicycles, ornaments and furniture are also commonly taken. Then it can get weird. People have had decorative barrels, swimming pool pumps, and plants stolen by opportunists. Potted plants, hanging baskets, and even planted shrubs have been swiped and sold on. The problem has become so severe in some places that public places such as Anglesey Abbey have begun security tagging their snowdrops.

Choose the Right Secure Garden Fencing

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It’s obvious that a short, cheap, weatherbeaten lap fence made from softwood won’t deter thieves very much. It can be harder to figure out what will keep undesirables away. Well, secure garden fencing will help. Colourfence is an excellent candidate. The surface is smoother, making it harder for burglars to get a foothold and climb into your garden. The material (zincalume) is tough, so it can’t be easily damaged or destroyed; and it isn’t susceptible to fire the same way wooden alternatives are. A trellis top can provide extra security; especially threaded with thorny climbers such as roses.

Choose the Right Gate

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Colourfence also produce high quality, secure gates, which are made from a combination of Colorbond steel and high quality pre galvanised, powder coated square tube. The gates come in a variety of sizes and lengths, and can come with a range of locks, handles and drop bolts. They share the qualities of Colourfence fencing; they are extremely low maintenance and very durable. They are also weather resistant, and wind resistant up to 130 MPH – another important quality in October and the coming winter.

Tweaking Your Garden For Security

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You can plant spiky shrubs next to your fence to deter people from climbing over the fence. This may seem harsh if you are being invaded by next door’s kids, but a thief may well see this and decide to look for easier prospects. Other ways to frighten them away include light and noise. Noise in particular can be your friend. You can try anything from a gravel driveway to a professional alarm. With light, you can try dusk to dawn security lighting or motion sensor lamps, which can startle people away and make your garden seem like too much trouble.

General Tips

  • Keep your bins away from your gates / fences
  • Microchip your pets
  • Use land anchors to secure your plant pots
  • Invest in good, weather proof padlocks for sheds and gates
  • Use a bike lock as well as locking your shed
  • Check your insurance covers your more expensive items.
  • Keep bushes trimmed back.
  • Make sure ladders are locked away.

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Wind-Proof Fencing: Protect Your Home this Winter with Colourfence

By | Winter Gardening | No Comments

Did you know that not all home insurance policies cover storm damage? Fences and sheds are usually excluded from insurance policies, according to the Association of British Insurers. Even if you are covered for storm damage, insurers may disagree on what constitutes a ‘storm’ and decline to pay out.

Is this really a problem? Well, there were 12 major storms during Winter 2013-14, which was the stormiest period of weather the UK has experienced for at least 20 years.  Winter 2015-16 was the second wettest and there were nine ‘named’ storms from November onwards.

Assess

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Insurance claims will also often be denied if you are deemed to be ‘liable’. This means, for example, if you knew your roof tiles were loose or fence panels were rotten. So the first thing to do is assess your property and garden. Try to spot any obvious issues; is your home in good repair? After all, compromised roof tiles or damaged guttering will be the first casualties. If you have trees or large shrubs in your garden, check them for dead or rotten branches (it might be worth getting an expert to check this for you).

Luckily you can do a number of things to prepare for stormy weather. You can even look at getting an optional add on policy specifically for storm damage. It’s worth keeping an eye on the news for storm reports, and setting up some news alerts online. You can even follow the Met Office on Twitter (@metofficestorms) for storm warnings.

Prepare

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First, focus on basic home maintenance. Arrange for a tree surgeon to prune back any shrubs or trees. Secure your car in a garage, store away any electronic items and make sure flower pots and garden ornaments are tidied away (to avoid smashed windows). Ensure your TV aerial is carefully fixed and check for any electrical leads that could come loose (this could cause severe problems). Also, strap any trampoline down as strongly as possible.

Next it’s time to think bigger. Sheds and fences are the two biggest ones. They will likely need securing or even replacing. Can your shed be easily dismantled? This is an extreme step, but some models can be taken apart very easily. This can be the easiest way to protect it during a spate of severe weather. Next, take a look at your fence – and be brutal. Will those three year old store bought overlap panels really survive Storm Desmond style 80 MPH winds?

Replace

 

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If your fence is older, damaged, or starting to show signs of rot or wear, it might just be time to replace it. While this is an investment, it’ll be much better value than paying to fix your neighbour’s windscreen after your fence lands on it. One of the best alternatives to cheap overlap fencing is Colourfence. It’s a strong, durable fencing solution designed to withstand gusts up to 130 MPH.

Colourfence is made of zincalume steel. It’s corrosion resistant and rot proof; it’s also designed to stand up to the most extreme weather conditions. These strong fence panels require very little maintenance and are guaranteed for 25 years. They are also fitted by fully trained and accredited experts, so you don’t have to worry about cowboys or DIY mistakes.

So, is it worth it? Well; the reality is that our weather is getting more extreme. One Oxford University study found that climate change has increased the chances of Desmond-like storms by about 40 per cent.

Colourfence may be a higher initial investment than cheaper wooden panels, but work out as being the best value fence panels long term. The panels are specifically designed to withstand strong winds, and are guaranteed for a quarter of a century, so will be replaced in the unlikely event that they do get damaged.

How are you planning to prepare for another stormy winter?

Wind Proof Fencing Winter

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The Best Alternative to Wood Garden Fencing

By | Fencing Materials | No Comments

Colourfence. An innovative metal fencing product, ‘Colourfence’ is made from Colorbond™ pre-painted steel. It comes in four colours, green, cream, brown and blue, with optional trellis toppers and gates available.

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Colourfence is a better alternative to traditional wooden fencing. More durable, more secure, more eco friendly and much lower maintenance, it simply makes more sense whichever way you look at it.

What Makes it Better?

It’s more Durable

Colourfence is extremely durable. Steel fencing made from Colorbond steel originated in Australia, but is now manufactured here in the UK. It is designed to withstand extreme climate conditions, it comes with a 25 year guarantee and can withstand gusts up to 130 MPH. It is not subject to the same issues as wooden fencing; it will not rot, warp or peel.

It’s Virtually Maintenance Free

Colourfence is virtually maintenance free. All the fence requires is an occasional hose down, to keep it looking as good as new. In contrast a wooden fence requires regular, thorough scrubbing and cleaning (often with a power washer), plus annual painting or sealing with chemicals that can be dangerous for children and pets. On top of that, the fence will probably need partial or total replacement within about ten years.

It’s More Secure

Infills are securely locked into the post and rails as a deterrent to intruders, and a full range of lockable gates is available. It comes in heights up to 2.1m, (subject to planning) and panels are smooth meaning it is difficult to climb and there are no easily removed slats for intruders to exploit.

It is Fitted by Experts

Colourfence is supplied and fitted by a network of fully trained and licensed Franchisees. All Colourfence franchisees offer site surveys and free no obligation quotes to ensure you get exactly the fence you want at an all-inclusive price with no hidden extras.

View A time lapse of how a Colourfence is erected below:

It’s Eco Friendly

Colourfence is 100% recyclable and requires no toxic chemicals to maintain. Colourfence operate on the basis of an ongoing commitment to sustainability, as do Bluescope Steel, the manufacturers of Colorbond steel. They actively work on reducing waste and preventing pollution, as well as the principles of re-use, reduce and recycle.

Extra: Matching Gates

Our secure and durable gates come in two styles; either Colourfence, or ColourRail.

The standard Colourfence gates are manufactured from a combination of Colorbond steel and high quality pre galvanised, powder coated square tube. They come in a range of standard widths, in lattice or standard top, and can be accessorised with locks, handles and drop bolts to suit your needs.

ColourRail gates are made from heavy duty tubular steel and are ideal for situations where full screening is not required. They are available in a loop, loop and spear, spear, or flat top finish with non-standard heights and widths being made to order at a small additional charge. These gates come in the 4 standard Colourfence colours, plus gloss black.

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Want to see Colourfence now? View our image gallery here