Backyard fences are used for privacy, to keep pets enclosed and to act as a barrier between neighboring yards. You don't need to spend a lot of money on backyard fencing, as there are many styles that can use inexpensive materials. Whether you want to just demark your boundary or avert prying eyes, several fencing styles can affordably provide these functions.
Semi-private fences have gaps between the vertical boards. These wooden fences allow border demarcation and prevent animals from crossing over. This type of fence is built with either metal, or wooden poles or beams that are erected every one to two yards. Poles are embedded into the soil at a depth of at least six inches. Horizontal boards are nailed or bolted onto the beams and then 1-by-4 boards are nailed to them. A gap of one to three inches allows viewing through the fence when looking at an angle.
Split Rail Fence
A split rail fence is an inexpensive rustic style that acts as a property marker between you and your neighbors. This type of fence is usually about four to five feet tall. Use a post-hole digger to place 4-by-4 posts approximately five or six feet apart. Two rows of equally spaced horizontal 2-by-4's or other off-cut rough timber is then nailed, bolted or tied to the posts.
Cedar Pole Fence
Rough-hewn cedar poles can provide a cheap fencing option. Place raw cedar poles every four feet and tie two rows of barbed wire around it, one near the top and one near the bottom. This type of fencing won't hold small animals, but will rather mark off your property boundary and is especially good for large rural tracts.
Chain Link Fence
Chain link fencing can provide an inexpensive backyard enclosure. Non-rusting aluminum or galvanized steel poles are erected and then chain link fencing is bolted into place. These fences hold up well to weather and can last for decades.
Vinyl fences can be used where barriers and privacy are needed. Vinyl comes in strips that are woven into a variety of patterns and colors to choose from. These fences are inexpensive and available at large garden centers.
Consider planting hedges along your backyard border, especially if you live in a warm climate locale. Hedges like hibiscus or azalea can provide the barrier you want between your neighbors, but will provide you with vibrantly colored flowers and year-round greenery. Tightly packed hedges can also prevent animals from getting into your yard. Periodic trimming will keep them looking their best.