how to build a livestock fence

Earlier in the summertime, Mister & Master M built a new fence around our vegetable garden in the backyard. It’s inspired by traditional livestock fences but with a bit of an edge and character. Here are all the details on how to build a livestock fence. You can do this too!

livestock fence

It’s amazing how easily they built it and rather quickly too. Plus it’s super sturdy and actually much better built than the fence they replaced, which was professionally installed I might add.

how to build a fence

Mister Masterpiece actually figured out how to do this all on his own. He started with the gate fences on the sides of the house. Then he built the front fence on our property with the help of Master M. And now the garden fence. He refines the process each time he does it, so I thought we would share here to inspire or help you build your own fence. Here’s another post on the fences in the front yard from last year {the Hogwire Fence Project}.

Hotwire fence

we loved the old cottage fence, BUT we love the new livestock fence even more

First, lets remember what the old fence looked like. It was a sweet picket fence, which gave the garden a cottage vibe. I loved it! I was extremely apprehensive to replace it, but it was worn and breaking down more and more each day. Finally, when we had it removed, we found out it had termites so it was a good thing we did it when we did.

cottage fence

The new fence has more of a residential farmhouse feel to it, which is the perfect upgrade for our home right now. I love how it looks. It has updated the “look” of the garden and our backyard in general. And the best part? We did it ourselves. I call this a livestock fence although we actually don’t use it to corral any furry friends, rather we use it to keep critters out of our vegetable beds.

fence DIY

instructions on how to build a livestock fence

We used pressure treated wood for our fence since we were told this will prevent it from deteriorating like our previous fence. The first step is establishing where your main posts will be located. Each fence section here is spaced about 4 to 6 feet apart. We have variations on the lengths because of the footprint of the garden, following the organic shape. If you’re building a straight fence, I would recommend just deciding on a length that makes sense for your project. A length that’s divisible by 6-8 feet into the total length of your project is the easiest math-wise . Here are the boys making sure the posts are perfectly level.

how to build a livestock fence

We used 4×4-inch wood for the main fence posts. Each hole for the main posts are about 1-1/2 feet deep, grounding each post securely. The fence posts are about 40 to 36-inches tall {above the ground}, making each post about 4-1/2 to 4-3/4-feet tall before you stick the approximate 18 inches into the ground (hope that makes sense). We have variation because our ground slants where the vegetable garden is located. If you’re on a flat surface, I would just decide how tall you want your fence, determined by the purpose and look. The fence posts are secured into the ground using Quikrete, a cement concrete mix found at most home improvement and hardware stores.

While the posts sets into the QuikreteMake, sure the posts are perfectly straight using a level as shown in the previous photo. Once the cement mix is totally set and dry, you are ready to add your horizontal beams on the fence. We used 2×4-inch wood rails here. Cut each fence rail to fit snugly in between each fence post. The top rail is attached to the main posts about 4 inches down from the top, while the bottom trails are attached about 6-inches up from the bottom. Since there are plantings on the bottom of the fencing, the added space is visually more appealing.

After the 2×4 railing beams are nailed into into the 4×4 posts, the boys added the arbor and gate to our garden fence. If you are interested we can give you all the details for the arbor and fence, following the same building principles used on the fencing panels. Let me know. I’d be happy to provide you with additional details for the arbor. I will leave all the final details for the arbor and gate for a subsequent post, since this post is chock full of details already.

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DIY fencing

the finials and hogwire are the “jewelry” of the fence

We found the finials on amazon here. The finials are purely decorative and not structural necessary, but they add a nice finishing touch. You can also use caps like we used in the front and side fences {the Hogwire fence project}. Unfortunately, I did not capture Miss M helping dad paint the fence, but it truly was a family affair. Once the fence was fully painted and the hardware and old signs were attached, it was time to add the wire, which is the “personality” of the fence.

The wire come as sheet panels in different sizes, gauges and colors. We used silver wire panels in a 4×6-feet size with a 6-gauge thickness. First cut cut the wire panels down to size to fit within your fencing dimensions. Then attach them using industrial staples or fasteners to the wood. If you zoom in to our pictures you will be able to see how our wire is fastened to the wood.

garden fence

we love the farmhouse vibes the livestock fence gives the garden

We love the updated look the new fence gives the garden. Plus it feels even better that it was home grown. We hope this helps and | or inspires you to build a fence of your own!

The boys built the fence last year and this is what to looked like this year earlier in the spring.

“Whatever good things we build end up building us.”

Jim Rohn

sharing @ between naps on the porch


  1. Michelle Keltner says:

    This is a gorgeous project. I have some garden areas that could use a fence like this. Thank you for linking up and have a great week.

    1. Thanks Michelle! You can make one for your yard too. I promise you’ll love it. 💛 MJ

  2. Cindy Rust says:

    The new fence looks so good! Now all I need is live stock!! BTW, if I could get my hands on those old pickets, I will build all sorts of little projects! We made picket ‘crates’ among many other home decor items that our local customers love. I have a tutorial on my blog in case you need a project for the leftover pickets – without the termites of course! Pinning!

    1. Yes! I would have loved to use the old picket fence too but I was too apprehensive because of the termites. It was pretty bad & I erred on the side of caution. I normally try to upcyle & recycle everything!

  3. shopatblu says:

    How timely that I stumbled upon your post! We need to fence in a garden and your design is perfect! Pinned.

    1. I am so glad! I hope it helps and if you have any questions please lmk, we would be happy to help. Good luck. XO- MJ

  4. mhhwarmcozy says:

    I would absolutely love a fence like this around my garden, MaryJo. It is charming!

    Thanks for sharing at the Friday With Friends Link Party.


    1. Thanks so much Rachelle. XO- MJ

  5. helenfern says:

    Great post – Pinned. I need a garden fence. Thanks for sharing at My Big Fat Menopausal Life’s Share the Wealth Party – hope to see you at the next one this week!

    1. Thanks Helen! I hope it helps you with your fence & thanks for the pin. I will be there for sure. Thnx for stopping by. XO- MJ

  6. decorativeinspirationsgmailcom says:

    Your fence came out so nice. It is the perfect garden fence for a backyard. Wonderful job.

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words. XO- MJ

  7. Laurie says:

    I like how this turned out!

    Featuring your post today at the Sunday Sunshine Blog Hop!

    Thank you so much!


    1. Thanks so much for the feature Laurie and hosting every week. XO- MJ

  8. It really looks nice and keeping critters out is just as important as keeping them in, isn’t it?

    1. Thanks Donna. Yes, it’s all about living with nature. Thanks for the visit. XO- MJ

  9. Cara says:

    Thank you for the how to MaryJo, I am in love with the new fence. I can understand why you would be apprehensive to remove the old fence, but this one? LOVE IT! Those darn termites can do some real damage, so be gone and welcome new fence. The entry gate is so lovely too.

I love hearing from you!