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New Uses for Old Garden Gates

Make old garden gates focal points in your garden.

Wood Garden Fences

Old wooden garden gates.
If you have just installed new gates and are now staring at the old wooden gate with misgivings, you might like to consider other uses for the old gates, before reaching for your axe and planning the next bonfire. While your old gates might no longer be up to the job of keeping the next door's dog out and your children safely in, the gates might still have uses.

Small garden ideas
In small gardens the design must be to scale otherwise architectural features and plants will look out of place and too domineering. Installing a windbreak to protect vulnerable plants or a screen that will allow you to sit unobserved in your front garden or small patio can be difficult, if space is at a premium. Although garden centres have plenty of screens and windbreaks available, they tend to be designed for much larger gardens.


Paint the gate!
An old garden gate can get a new lease of life as a mini windbreaker or a screen. Now that it is no longer part of your garden fencing, the old gate can be painted in colours that are either blend in with your plants and flowers or paint it in a contrasting color, so that the gate itself becomes a focal point. If the gate is wooden and solid, it's best used as a windbreaker, with the added benefit that smaller climbers can be trained to grow up and across it. Depending on the gate's size, two climbing shrubs in containers placed on either side to support the gate can be very effective, particularly if you plant shrubs that flower at different times of the year.

Metal garden gates as protective "grilles"
Metal garden gates, perhaps old aluminum gates that were replaced because a taller gate was needed for security, can be placed across small ponds or water features to keep little ones safe and predators away from goldfish swimming underneath.


As a quick and easy-to-install "grille", your old aluminum gates could become your a barbeque when placed across a three-sided stack of bricks with an area for fire lighting in the middle. Easy to dismantle in winter, the old gate can be tucked away between a hedge and a wall of the house and the bricks can be used to protect planters from frost.

Large garden ideas
For larger gardens old gates can get a second lease of life when used to outline special planting areas, such as dividing a kitchen garden from the flowering part of the garden.

Long, narrow gardens lend themselves to the creation of different designs for planting, such as a Mediterranean garden for the sunniest, driest part of the garden and an Asian one for the cooler, shadier spots. Here the visitor knows that he or she enters a different zone, by opening a gate and stepping into an enclosure. Narrow gardens are used to their full in this way and the eye is tricked into believing the garden is much wider than it actually is.


Turning a gate onto its side and using it horizontally rather than vertically will serve the purpose of fencing off a small area between different designs. Tall gates used vertically can replace an old, rotting trellis with minimum fuss.

If the old gate is wooden, still solid and intact, it can be turned on its side and used as a table, where potting of plants can take place. Placed on a stack of bricks it can easily be disassembled, once the work is finished.

There are many uses for old garden gates. You should let your imagination run free before consigning a perfectly serviceable cottage garden gate to the skip. For a start, your neighbour might need it!

Remember, getting a quality fence for your property will improve its aesthetic appeal, add an extra layer of security, and even raise your property values.

About the Author: Raymond Remi Rheault writes about the many uses of aluminum fencing. He recommends Aluminum Fence Depot for any of your aluminum fencing needs.
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