How to hide my neighbor's chain link fence

nancitaMay 17, 2013

Hi all,
The 4' chain link fence that separates my neighbor's property is not only rusty, it is upside down, as is all of their chain link. Short of slapping something in fron of it (not a whole lot of room on that side of the house), is there ANYTHING I can do? Any ideas would be welcome.
Thank you.

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    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 11:51AM
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Sophie Wheeler

If you don't want to put up your own fence, then no there is nothing you can do to your neighbor's fence. However, if you two cooperate, maybe you can put up a replacement fence together that will address your concerns and be a better containment for whatever needs to be contained.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 11:53AM
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You could plant against it.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 1:19PM
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I was thinking about planting something - though you might want to get the neighbor's approval first.

Who knows - maybe they don't like the ugly fence either.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 2:09PM
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Out of curiosity, what does upside down mean with regard to chain link? All the fencing I've ever used looks pretty symmetrical to me, it's never occurred to me that there might be an up or down side to it when I've been installing it. (I've probably done it wrong for decades!)

Planting a nice vigorous vine (with permission, assuming the fence is not on your lot) seems like the best choice.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 2:30PM
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Check to see if the fence is within their lot line -- if it is ON the lot line ... you have some leverage to:

a.) Take it down
b.) Replace it and split the cost
c.) Plant something directly on it

You could always sink three/four Trellises in the ground along the fence and grow something up them on your side. This wouldn't help in the winter but it would help for three seasons.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 2:33PM
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Hi, Maybe some nylon fencing screen. The stuff comes in colors. You might find it used on school sites . construction sites and industrial sites. You just unroll it and wire it on the fence. It looks Ok and gives you a little privacy.
Good Luck Woodbutcher

    Bookmark   May 17, 2013 at 7:12PM
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Maybe ornamental grasses. For example, "Karl Foerster" grass grows quickly, grows into a tall column in one season, and you leave it up all winter, cut it down in March, and it grows up quickly again. We used it as a screen before we put up a fence. Or maybe put up some woven willow fencing on your side. Saw some starting around $40 for 4x10'. You can tie it to their fence if it's okay with your neighbors, or put in your own posts.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 12:05AM
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Spray painting it black can make it less of an eyesore. That, plus some evergreen plantings would be a big improvement.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 2:47AM
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Hi all,
Thank you for the creative ideas! I like them all. Just have to figure out which is going to work best for us.
I think having some kind of plant (ornamental grass sounds good to me) along with maybe the spray painting the fence black (not too excited about the prospect, but love the idea) would go a long way.
My neighbor does the bare minimum on their property so the fence will stay.
The upside down fence has dangerous, sharp metal prongs that I gues are supposed to go into the ground to give it more stability. A friend was over and accidentally put his hand on top of the fence, leaving a lovely gash in his hand. Not sure if there's anything to do about that.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 11:01AM
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Sophie Wheeler

The fence isn't upside down. There is no "up" or "down" with the chain link fabric. It's just probably missing the top rail or it's incorrectly installed.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 11:27AM
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Well, that's possibly good news. Maybe we can finng" part?

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 12:44PM
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There is also a solution for the top, sharp edge. Using a pair of standard size ViseGrips, you can work along the fenceline, grab each piece, and bend the top 3/4" or so over on itself to form a little loop.

My neighbor had a 6' tall chainlink fence that he cut down to 4' with bolt cutters, and then bent over all the top edges to make it neat and safe. It went surprisingly fast.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 1:12PM
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Hi again,
Well, after comparing my neighbor's fence and mine (another story for another post), their fence is absolutely, definitely, and positively upside down.
I suppose it's possible the chain links of today are the exact same top and bottm. The neighbor's fence was probably "installed" 20 years ago. he top has two loops intertwined together to make a point. The bottom doesn't. It simply has the two prongs that extend below the fence and it goes into the ground.
Up or down, still have the rusty issue and have some wonderful ideas. Now if only there was a way to cap those dangerous prongs.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 1:13PM
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I "capped" some exposed sharp wire ends on a welded wire mesh trellis by putting a blob of dries-clear silicone caulk on each one.

It was a bit of a PITA, but it makes working near the trellis safer.

You can use a roller and black or dark green paint from your side to hide the rusted out links.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 2:34PM
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Why can't you just bend them over, as I described above, with a pair of ViseGrips?

    Bookmark   May 18, 2013 at 2:46PM
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bend the tips over & plant stuff in front.

ornimental grasses, evergreen bushes
trellised flowers/vines.

to hide my crack monster neighbors I bought
some woven bamboo screening. they are gone
(thank you God!!) but the screening is still
standing. mine is 8' tall, you could cut in in half
and lock tie it on to the chain link.

if you decide to paint..get a rat & a string.

best of luck.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2013 at 12:27PM
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Fori is not pleased

How long a fence is it?

Do you think your neighbor would mind (or notice) if you put a vine on it? Doesn't hurt to ask. If it's a really sturdy fence, wisteria might be nice. Even though it goes dormant, it still has a nice woody presence and will hide most of the fence once it grows up a bit. Even grapes could be useful here.

If you don't mind losing a little space and want something softer than coniferous evergreens, there are some really wonderful clumping bamboos that can stay green all winter in your zone (check out Fargesia spp.). If you plant them close to the fence, they'll swallow it up and render it invisible.

The landscaping forum can be helpful if you decide to go with plants.

    Bookmark   May 20, 2013 at 3:31PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Nancita, we don't know your zone or zone rules. If you are in county property in California, what you do on your side is ok! If there is a homeowner's association, different story.

I suspect there is no homeowner's association, and if you live where grapes can grow, I would suggest an entire vineyard along that fence!

The other thing you can do is Italian Cyprus which will block the neighbor's yard entirely!

Good luck!

Remember, a good neighbor is valuable. Bring a basket of goodies with your suggestions. You get more flies with honey!

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 3:33PM
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Hi all,
Thank you alsuggestions! There is no doubt whatever I do , it will include some sort of plantings.
I live in Zone 6 on a corner lot. So, it is my neighbors on the only side I have neighbors. They are lovely people. It isn't essential to make their yard go away, just their fence.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 5:01PM
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Plant a hedge such as boxwood or holly in front of it.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2013 at 12:17AM
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I don't know why people install chain link fences upside down. Maybe it just depends how you look at it as to which side is the top, but a lot of people do install it "upside down". I guess they think it deters people or animals from jumping over it. I think it just looks bad, and yes it can cut your hands or arms, or anything else that brushes against it or on it.
Fyi, the bottom is where the wire that makes up the links are tied together resulting in a two-pronged jagged point. This side of the fence is typically placed towards the ground, but not always

This post was edited by super65 on Mon, Feb 24, 14 at 13:53

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 1:38PM
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Lovely people as they are, they might like the points as a deterrent.

I'd ask if they minded a vine, even painting. Although a vine could grow wild on their side and become a problem. Some can be very invasive, eithrr by soots or seeds. Careful selection would be needed.

Double fences don't look so good, imo.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 3:55PM
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