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What are the Different Types of Decorative Fences?

Decorative fences not only enhance curb appeal but also define property lines with style. From the timeless charm of wrought iron to the rustic allure of wood lattice, each type offers unique aesthetic and functional benefits. Vinyl picket fences promise low maintenance, while bamboo screens add an exotic touch. Wondering which fence reflects your personal taste and home's character?
Amanda R. Bell
Amanda R. Bell

The different types of decorative fences can be both functional and aesthetically pleasing, making them a popular choice for residential properties. Privacy fences, sometimes referred to as stockade fences, can provide security while still adding visual interest to a property. Farm style fencing, commonly known as split rail fencing, can add a rustic component to many different landscaping styles. The picket fence, often found in suburban settings, can define a property line without disrupting the visual flow of a neighborhood. Other types of decorative fences include the lattice fence and wrought iron, Gothic style fencing commonly found on properties with historical homes.

The privacy fence is characterized by both its height and the spacing between slats. These decorative fences are at least 6 feet (1.8 meters) high, with only 1/8 of an inch (3.1 millimeters) between the slats. This kind of fence is often used in residential backyards for both security purposes and safety reasons. The decorative part is typically found in the stain used on the wood and the tops of the slats; varying slat sizes and types can create a number of different looks.

A house with a picket fence.
A house with a picket fence.

Split rail fencing was created as a means to keep livestock in a pasture. With time, these types of decorative fences have become a way to indicate property lines without blocking a view. This fence is commonly found in front of a ranch, country, or farm style house, although it can also be used in front of more modern homes. It is characterized by its horizontal slats, between two and four, that are set up between posts. In residential areas, this can help to keep pets off of the lawn while still allowing a view of the neighborhood from the front yard. This wooden fence can be left natural, stained, or painted.

Wrought-iron, Gothic style fencing can be found on many properties with historical homes.
Wrought-iron, Gothic style fencing can be found on many properties with historical homes.

A picket fence is often short, typically 2 feet (60.9 centimeters) high, and is known for the sharp point at the top of the slats. The beauty of a picket fence lies in the spacing between slats; both small spacing, similar to a privacy fence, and wider spacing are available depending on one's needs. This type of decorative fencing is often ideal for front yards, thus providing security for small children and pets while still leaving an open view of the neighborhood.

Split rail fencing adds a rustic look to landscaping.
Split rail fencing adds a rustic look to landscaping.

For those who want the security of a privacy fence without the privacy, lattice decorative fences can be a good choice. This type of fence provides a more open feel to a yard while still keeping small children and animals safely inside property lines. It also has the added bonus of acting as a garden fence; vines and climbing plants work well with lattice.

Some decorative fencing also offers homeowners privacy.
Some decorative fencing also offers homeowners privacy.

Gothic style fencing is often found in historical properties. These fences can range from simple wrought iron bars to more intricate ornamental fencing. Scroll work and heavy stone posts are common with this type of fence, making it one of the most intricate styles of decorative fences. Each type of decorative fences can increase the curb appeal of a property while still providing many of the same advantages of more conventional, plain fencing.

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    • A house with a picket fence.
      A house with a picket fence.
    • Wrought-iron, Gothic style fencing can be found on many properties with historical homes.
      By: Swet
      Wrought-iron, Gothic style fencing can be found on many properties with historical homes.
    • Split rail fencing adds a rustic look to landscaping.
      By: ejkrouse
      Split rail fencing adds a rustic look to landscaping.
    • Some decorative fencing also offers homeowners privacy.
      By: Johanna Goodyear
      Some decorative fencing also offers homeowners privacy.