How A Landlocked Mermaid Makes A Wattle Fence {For Your Victorian English Cottage Garden}

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

My dear friends,

Today is being spent indoors; garden planning with my dear ol' spirited friend, Beatrix Potter.

Yesterday, all through the weekend, and today, I'm using my time wisely, as today marks a week of daily rainstorms. The frogs love it, with their croaking and ribbeting. This is how I imagine the frogs in this type of weather. Dear Ms Magadalene, isn't she a sight with her apron, and bonnet atop her head?

Okay, Phewww... {let me begin, and as Mr Barrow from Downton Abbey would say, " NOW, LET"S GET ON!}

Have you ever googled, "How To Make A Wattle Fence?" No? Oh, okay, it is just me, all by my lonesome, attempting to live in another century. So, you ask, why would I desire to look up how the Victorians, {or the 17th-century folks} made wattle fences? What kind of weirdo; do you think I am, Raquel?

Well, let me answer that, for you, dear friend. I am an introvert, and It wouldn't take Anaximander to understand that I have spent my entire childhood wrapped up in my imagination. I have found that being an imaginative lady; is what has given me tenacity and strength. Let's be truthful here, I wouldn't have the confidence to pull off dressing like Tasha Tudor or Laura Ingall's Wilder, in this century, if I wasn't able to stand strong in my convictions.

I believe {yes, I'm going on a mindset growth-spurt tangent for a second, so, bear with me}, that a little child should always dream. It is what, too often, folks will prohibit, by convincing children that they must grow up and stop spending time in la-la land. I happen to believe, we-we're intended to stay free thinkers and use our imagination to the fullest. My imagination is where I feel happiest. It's also the avenue; in which, I am able to write my little storybooks. I transform when I write. It helps make beautiful books for all those around to read. Playing pretend is a pursuit we should never grow out of.
Yes, The photo below is rubbage, but I wanted you to see the cute wattle fence, up close. You probably need to put your bifocals on.{Sarcasm insues}
 Okay, so the real reason I wanted to make a wattle fence was that I love the English countryside, and have always loved those wattle fences you see in the Europe countryside. It's a brilliant invention, and let's be honest; when renovating an entire home, to transform it into an authentic Victorian English cottage, cutting costs for materials is an utmost plus.

Wattle fencing was invented from farmers in the middle ages, as a method to hurdle animals. The rotation process of corralling animals and rotating them helped to reduce worm loads and to prevent overgrazing. It mostly became popular amongst sheep farms in the British countryside. I am going to be making another wattle fence, but taller, so that I can keep the chickens in a certain area of the garden. I wish to have my grass growing again, so that's a thought that's beginning to tickle wickle my fancy.
I actually made our wattle fence several years ago, when Jeffrey and I tended to my parent's gardens. My parents have a row of 10 crape myrtle trees. So, when Jeffrey informed me, one weekend, that we had to trim the crape myrtles, I was truly excited. I immediately thought: WATTLE FENCE! {Hence, at the time, I had been consuming the youtube series, Victorian Farm, Episodes 1-6}.

When I informed Jeffrey, that I wanted to wrap all the branches up and take them home, his words were: " Baby, we have so much rubbage in the garage, as it is! {expletives $%^&$$###}; However, I trust you." That is one particular trait that I find very refreshing about my BG {Beloved Gardener}, and that is-he trusts me. Even though; he may not understand what I'm planning, he has complete confidence in me.

I am not one of those DIY blogs that will give you a play by play breakdown, because I think, for the most part, you ladies are brilliant. However, I will tell you how to make it, through words and share a few things you must make sure that you do. If anything, hopefully, the fence remains standing for several/many years.
Instructions for making your wattle fence:

Find a copious amount of green {they must be freshly cut} branches. I suggest crape myrtle {in the south}, willow, or bull pine trees. You can use any kind that you want; obviously, I used what I had received for free.

Next, you'll decide where you want your wattle fence; and how tall. I wanted mine to be a foot and a half. I also knew I wanted mine to separate the garden flowers from the grass. I made it before we got our chickens, so that is something to think about, as well. I will have to make a much taller one next time, to keep the chickens out of my garden spaces. They love devouring my vegetation. Those savages! {wink, wink}
Make 2 piles. One of the wattle branches, and one for the stake pile. The stakes will need to be at least 1 1/2 " inches in diameter or thicker. The wattle pile should be at least 1" or less.

After cutting your stakes to 3'-4' feet long, begin driving them into the ground at least a foot deep. Now, if you were to research a DIY, of how to make a wattle fence, they will tell you to shave down the bottom, so as to, drive the wood easier.

{Insert: Mrs Rebeccah Puddle-Duck admonishing Jemima, of her impatience to sit on a nest for twenty-eight days} I, too," had not the patience" to whittle the stakes down.

As much as, that probably would've helped, I seemed to make out just fine, pounding them into the ground. A tip though; is to water the ground a bit, as it loosens up the dirt, making it easier for you to drive the stakes deep into the ground. The space in between each stake should be at least a foot. If they are too spread out, the wattle branches will be loose, and won't hold up, after they've dried.

Now, just alternate in and out with the branches as you stack them, pushing down, as you go, so the weave is tight. When you run out of wattle branch, overlap just a little with the previous branch. The great thing about this project is that is is free, and there isn't a hard set of rules. You can be as free and as happy as you'd like with your wattle design.

Do you like a wattle fence, and do you feel up for the challenge? I'd love to hear all about it.

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquelxxx


  1. They are the perfect solution to many garden issues and add a subtle line for the eye to follow.

    1. I, soooo, agree with you... Now, I want to make them everywhere.. heehee

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