A fence is one of the hardest working elements of your home. It must be functional – defining spaces, creating privacy, providing shelter and shade. It must be durable – resisting insects and decay while at the same time taking on whatever environmental conditions Mother Nature conjures up. It should also be a beautiful structure that adds to the visual appeal of your property.

Humboldt Redwood is the one building material that can exceed all three needs: function, durability and beauty.

Redwood Fence Design Considerations

The stability, strength and beauty of Humboldt Redwood make it the logical choice when building a fence, but before you buy any materials or choose a style, decide first why you need the fence.

What Purpose Does Your Fence Serve

As mentioned previously, a fence is first and foremost about function. There are many reasons to build a fence, and those reasons will influence the design you choose. A fence that is built primarily for privacy will be dramatically different from one that is constructed to simply mark a property line. If it’s built to protect animals and children it will need to be a certain height and incorporate secure gates. Ask yourself why you need a fence and let that be your guide in the design process.

What Redwood Grade Will Work Best

Once you have defined the fence’s role, you next need to choose the right grade of Humboldt Redwood for the job. Redwood grades are defined by the wood’s durability as well as its appearance. Some grades are for general use while others have very specialized purposes. In any case, there is a redwood grade for every type of project and many redwood grades are ideal for building fences. The garden grades in particular have proven to be one of the best materials when building a redwood fence. Garden grades include:

  • Construction Heart
  • Deck Heart
  • Merchantable Heart
  • Construction Common
  • Merchantable Common

Choosing the Right Style of Redwood Fence

Today, a fence isn’t just a flat, upright surface that differentiates your yard from the neighbor’s. Style is a serious element that can make your fence one of the most beautiful structures in your entire yard. As you can see by the dozens of styles in our Redwood Fences For All Reasons booklet the possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

Some of the most popular redwood fence styles are:

  • Lattice-top
  • Picket
  • Board-on-board
  • Panel

Other popular styles include post-and-rail for long boundaries, such as in agricultural applications, and louvered, which allow for privacy and airflow. More elaborate styles include basket weave and window box designs.

Whatever your style, Humboldt Redwood is available in the grade, dimension and length for the job. Not only is it an attractive wood, it’s also extremely easy to work with, which is why redwood is a preferred choice for professional builders and contractors.

How Nails and Fasteners Affect a Redwood Fence

Sometimes it’s easy to forget about the fasteners that hold everything together, but their role goes far beyond the building phase. First off, there’s the choice of screws versus nails. Most builders will tell you that there are pros and cons to each, and your best bet is to use both during the fence build for different parts of the project.

Do-it-yourself fence builders should remember to use only stainless steel, aluminum or top-quality hot dipped galvanized nails, bolts, screws and fasteners. Other types of fasteners may corrode when exposed to moisture and will cause dark, unsightly stains on the wood.

Get more information about Fasteners for Redwood to ensure you’re making the right hardware choices for your fence.

Redwood Fence Design Ideas

Humboldt Redwood is so versatile that when it comes to fences you can do just about anything. Visit our Fence Design Ideas page to start gathering your thoughts and ideas together. Features to consider include:

  • Height
  • Dimension
  • Amount of lumber needed
  • The best grade to use
  • How well the style conforms with the existing landscape

Once styles are compared side-by-side it should become clear which one meets your needs the best.

Tips for Building a Redwood Fence

When you’re ready to move beyond the design phase and build a redwood fence the real fun begins. Below are essential tips for constructing any type of redwood fence.

  • Before beginning, decide whether you want to set all the posts in place then install the rails and boards, or if you want to do it in sections. Sectional building may work best if you’re using pre-fab fencing.
  • Before building use string and stakes to mark off the fence line.
  • Depending on the style you choose, post should typically be 6-8 feet apart.
  • The number of postholes you need to dig and the soil will influence the tools that will work best. Types of tools include: post-hole diggers, power augers, clamshell-style diggers and digging bars.
  • In areas where frost occurs the post-holes should be dug a foot deeper than the frost line.
  • Once postholes are dug and filled with concrete, set the posts and let the concrete dry for two days before beginning the rails.

For in-depth construction details and step-by-step instructions, we recommend our booklet Redwood Fences For All Reasons. It’s been to go-to resource for countless homeowners that have used Humboldt Redwood to construct their fences.


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Humboldt Redwood Company 108 Main Street
P.O. Box 565
Scotia, CA 95565

(707) 764-4472 – Main Number
(707) 764-4444 – Fax

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