A privacy fence around your property creates defined borders that keep others from entering or looking into your lawn. Planting flowering vines or perennials that need support close to the foundation of this fence is a practical gardening solution that enhances the beauty of the yard. However, there are some variables to consider before you plant vegetables or flowers close to the fence.

Fence Ownership

In case you have erected the privacy fence, then you’re free to landscape as you pick on your side of this fence. However, in the event the privacy fence separates two components and has been installed by your neighbor, then there are things to consider before deciding how close to the fence that you plant vegetables or flowers. Knowing if your neighbor is very likely to remove the fencing or make alterations in the future is vital in deciding the amount of space to allow between the fence and garden. You should also seek approval from the neighbor before planting climbing vines, because he could argue you have damaged his fence.


Just how close you are able to successfully plant a garden to your privacy fence also is based on the total amount of shade the fence creates during the day. A fence around the northern side of your lawn will throw a shadow from the premises, and fences on either the eastern or sloping sides may cast a shadow in your gardening area by several feet and influence plant growth in the garden. Notice the path of sunlight and the shadow cast from the fence during the day before choosing a garden area.

Room to Work

Allowing a 3- to 5-foot border all around your garden provides you with room to work in the garden comfortably. This is especially important if you intend to use a garden tiller or obtain the garden using a wheelbarrow. Spacing the garden 3 feet or more from the privacy fence provides you space to turn a small wheelbarrow and allows elbow room for jobs such as hoeing and cultivating the soil.

Other Factors

How you use your garden determines the space required between the garden and the privacy fence. Many gardeners enjoy adding birdbaths, bird feeders or other ornamental features around their gardens. If you intend to add such features or add seating close to the garden, then let several feet in the garden and the fence to give you the space you want.

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