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Grow a Friendly Space

Wire mesh is not just good for keeping your pet rabbit in one place, or for keeping foxes away from chickens. In garden design it can have a host of uses, from decorative to practical. There are a variety of types of mesh readily available to buy, either on the internet or in garden centres and builders merchants, and all can be put to use with a little imagination.

One type of mesh which Earth Designs have used to good effect is concrete re-enforcing mesh. This can be bought fairly cheaply in local builders merchants, usually costing no more than £20 for a 3m x 2m sheet, and is easily cut with an angle grinder (using the proper safety equipment of course.) It is versatile enough to be suitable for all sorts of garden construction. You could try building structures  and tunnels from it, as sheets of it can be easily wired together, or attach it to posts to form decorative panels as low ornamentation to a space. It can easily be attached to fences and walls as an interesting alternative to traditional wooden trellis. You could even use it to construct gabion-style containers which you can line with slate paving slabs (or whatever stone you like) to create unusual planters. Re-enforcing mesh is made from high tensile (but not stainless) steel, so it will last a long time but will develop an aesthetically pleasing coating of rust.

Stainless Steel wire mesh can also achieve pleasing effects in a garden. It is usually much more expensive than, and not as rigid as, re-enforcing mesh, so you are unlikely to use it to build freestanding structures. It comes in different mesh sizes, from tiny apertures created from thin wire which makes it flexible and almost like a cloth, to thicker wire with bigger holes which makes it more rigid and less flexible.  It can be easily attached (with stainless steel to posts, pergolas and boundaries as decoration or trellis. However you use it, being stainless steel it should remain pristine and shiny throughout the seasons. Stainless steel mesh is not the only decorative mesh available. If you want to be adventurous, you could check out a company called Decorative Mesh who have a fine array of colours and patterns guaranteed to liven up any garden.