A fence finishes the vegetable garden and sets it apart from the rest of the landscape.
Fences to keep out animals must be sturdy and fastened securely to posts or supports so animals can't push them over. If rabbits are a problem, bury narrow-gauged mesh wire fencing 12 inches deep so rabbits can't dig underneath it to get in. Use your creativity and make your fences decorative as well as functional.
Short hedges trimmed to 24 inches make a neat fence for a vegetable garden. Rambling roses grown around and through a split rail fence are pretty and will keep pets out of the garden for the most part.
If the garden area is large, consider using fruit-bearing bushes like raspberries and blackberries as fencing. Fruit trees such as peach can be pruned to one main trunk and several lateral side branches. Place the trees 8 feet apart and let the lateral side branches reach each other to form a fence.
Use wire fencing and grow peas, beans, cucumbers and small squashes up the wires.
Save the branches when you prune your trees and bushes. The long, slim, straight ones that are no thicker than your finger can be interwoven into a fence. Freshly cut green branches bend rather than snap. Willow branches work well, as do peach, plum and nectarine branches. Use strong stakes pounded into the ground as the support and weave the branches around and through the stakes.
Make an arched fence by inserting one end of the branch 6 inches into the soil. Gently bend the branch into an arch and insert the other end into the soil several feet away from the first end. Overlap the arches and make smaller arches closer to the ground to complete the fencing. The green branches will dry in the curved shape, much like green grapevines will dry into a curve when woven into a wreath.
Use posts as your fencing. Saw the posts into 18-inch lengths. Dig a trench that's 6 inches deep and set the posts upright to fence in the garden. Build a taller fence with longer posts set in a deeper trench.
Bamboo fencing comes in 15-foot lengths that are 6 feet high. Cut the fencing in half and use it for your vegetable garden fence.
Fences made from wood will last through one or two growing seasons before they have to be replaced.
A picket fence is a classic way to fence a vegetable garden. Paint the fence white to stand out or green to blend in. An arch over the garden gate is welcoming and will support vines.
Sometimes it's necessary to fence a vegetable garden temporarily to let seedlings get a good start or to train pets to stay out of the garden. Plastic mesh fencing attached to stakes does the job and is easy to put up and take down. Children's portable play fences work as well. Chicken wire isn't very sturdy unless it's fastened to a wooden frame, but it will serve as a barricade that reminds pets and children not to wander in.