When you’re shopping around for a house, one of the deciding factors is often the neighbors. How close houses are, whether or not the yards are separated in any way, and other things play a role. So, when Autumn comes around and your neighbor’s leaves are falling into your yard, what do you do?
It can be annoying to rake your lawn, only to see that John Doe’s maple tree has covered your yard with a layer of leaves. The best solution to prevent this from happening is to install a fence or yard separator.
Installing a fence is a lot easier than it seems. Not only will it keep leaves in their designated yards, but it also gives you an added bit of privacy. This guide will teach you about different fence ideas and give you other tips that keep leaves in their place.
Table of Contents
- Homeowner Hassles
- Inexpensive Fence Ideas
- Split Rail Fence with Mesh
- Chain Link Fence
- Barbed Wire Fence
- Hog Wire Fencing
- Pallet Fences
- Leaf Legalities
- Residential Rights
- Cost of Keeping Leaves at Bay
- Fencing Materials Price
- Alternatives Cost
- Related Questions
- How do you keep leaves from blowing away?
- Can I just mow over my leaves?
- Who is liable if a tree falls on a neighbor’s property?
Before getting upset or frustrated, have an open conversation with your neighbor. I get it, not everyone is friendly, and many people like to keep to themselves. If your leaves blowing into their yard is concerning you, it’s best to bring it up to them.
For all you know, your neighbor doesn’t even notice or care. On the other hand, your neighbor may have found his own frustration with the issue. Tell them what you plan on doing to reduce the number of leaves that blow into their yard.
This is a good opportunity to see if they have any ideas as well. Whether you plan to install a fence or cut up the leaves with a lawnmower, they’d like to hear it. Your neighbor will see that you’re showing concern for them and their yard.
Inexpensive Fence Ideas
Going all out and building a super sturdy fence can be expensive. In order to provide you with a bit of security and tackle the leaf problem, I wanted to give affordable alternatives. Below I’ve included several DIY options and materials that make for excellent fences.
Split Rail Fence with Mesh
If you’re looking for a more permanent option, a split rail fence is a great choice. A classic split rail will be made entirely of wood. In order to catch leaves, we’re going to add in a mesh that will easily keep you and your neighbor happy.
This is also a great option to keep your pet in your yard, as well. It also keeps out predators and provides a natural-looking perimeter. The materials are inexpensive, and the installation could be done in an afternoon.
Chain Link Fence
One of the more classic fence options is a chain link. They’re made of thick steel wires that are bent and hooked together. This is an excellent option if you’re working with a tight budget but still want to install a fence.
While it doesn’t add any privacy, it can keep leaves from blowing out of your yard. If you’re looking for privacy, consider planting an ivy or climbing plant at the base of the fence. Another great thing about chain links is that it can be painted any color to fit your preferred aesthetic.
Barbed Wire Fence
The first thing I need to say when it comes to barbed wire fencing is to avoid it at all costs if you have small children. This time of fencing uses strands of wire with sharp metal spikes throughout the line. It’s an excellent choice to keep leaves where they belong, but not great for families.
If you live in a rural area or have livestock, a barbed-wire fence is a perfect way to keep them in the pasture. This style of fencing is incredibly low-cost and keeps roaming predators like coyotes away. Be sure to check if barbed wire fences are legal in your neighborhood.
Hog Wire Fencing
I don’t know about you, but I like to save money where I can. Knowing that fencing can be expensive, I want to find the best bang for my buck (and for my readers!) Budget-conscious homeowners will appreciate hog wire fencing.
All that’s needed is wooden frames and some rigid metal wire. The wire gets hung like a grid over the frame. This makes it difficult for leaves to blow through the fence and into your neighbor’s yard.
Speaking of saving money, how does it sound to build a fence for free? You can create a pallet fence by picking up old pallets at nurseries or construction sites. There’s a lot of versatility that comes with using this material as well.
Pallets can be installed horizontally or vertically. You can paint them any color or leave them as-is for a more natural look. It’s essential to be aware that pallets are more likely to have random nails and areas that could cause splinters; handle with care.
As a homeowner, you’re likely well aware of the responsibilities you’re handed when you get the keys to your home. Are you educated on what’s your responsibility, and what’s your neighbors when it comes to yard care?
Under the law, falling leaves are considered a natural product and aren’t a liability for the tree owner. It doesn’t matter if it’s your tree or not; if the leaves fall into your yard, they’re your issue. So, if your leaves are blowing into your neighbor’s yard, it’s out of your hands.
Thankfully, now you’re a bit more educated on what you can do to stop it from becoming an issue.
Even though you’re not responsible for the leaves that blow into your neighbor’s yard, they do have some rights. For example, if your tree’s limbs go over into their yard, they have the right to trim them.
Your neighbor can only trim them up until the property line. If you’re dealing with a tree that produces fruit, they can’t pick any off of the tree. But, they can collect and keep any fruit that happens to fall into their yard.
Cost of Keeping Leaves at Bay
To make it easier to create a budget for this project, I included a couple of cost charts. This will give you a good idea of how much you could spend on a fence, a rake, or a grass collection bag.
Fencing Materials Price
|Material Type||Average Cost Per Linear Foot|
|Yew||$5 to $6|
|Bamboo||$3 to $6|
|Spotted laurel||$8 to $9|
|Privet||$1 to $2|
|Lattice top||$15 to $20|
|Dog ear||$15 to $20|
|Picket||$5 to $10|
|Split rail||$10 to $20|
|Electric||$1 to $6|
|Hog wire||$3 to $5|
|Barbed wire||$1.50 to $2|
|Wrought iron||$24 to $32|
|Chain link||$10 to $20|
|Treated pine||$12 to $19|
|Leaf trash bags||$12/ 20 pk||$20/ 100 pk||$2.50/ 5 pk||$70/ 100 pk|
How do you keep leaves from blowing away?
If you’ve raked up a big pile of leaves, you’ll want to keep them from blowing everywhere. You don’t want to be that neighbor. What you can do is invest in a “no-clog” rake that saves you time when collecting them around your yard.
Always be sure to rake WITH the wind, and downhill whenever possible. You have two options to keep them from blowing away. You can either bag them up in large yard bags, or you can stomp throughout the pile, pushing them into the ground.
Can I just mow over my leaves?
Not many people enjoy raking up all of the fallen leaves throughout their yard, especially if you have a lot of acreage. Something you can do to save you time and effort is to mow over the leaves. This chops them up into small pieces and works like a charm if you have a grass catcher on the back of your mower.
The gas catcher will collect the leaves as you mow. The leaves that aren’t gathered can decompose naturally on your lawn. It’s important to note that wet leaves don’t chop well and can easily clog things like leaf vacuums and rakes.
Who is liable if a tree falls on a neighbor’s property?
When a tree or any other plant falls over into your neighbor’s yard, the neighbor needs to submit a claim to his or her insurance company. This needs to be done as soon as possible. The insurance company will then take care of any damage if there is anything.