Fence Building

Our goal for 2012 was to build a pole barn and plant some fruit trees on the hill overlooking Gander Hill Pond and the rest of the farm. We need the pole barn to store our tractor and we wanted to get the fruit trees in now so by the time we moved there they would be close to producing fruit.

A picture of our building site

It was the veiw from this spot on the hill that we fell in love with that convinced  us to buy the farm. The building site had a 5 strand barbed wire fence surrounding the hill and it was connected to the  neighbors pasture ( he used to own the land) and he had cows that came onto our land. We didn’t mind this arrangement because it kept the area mowed and the cows were dropping lots of manure and urine that was helping to enrich our soil.

In order to protect the pole barn and new trees from the cattle we had to build a pasture fence to keep them out. My wife and I had already built some fencing for  the gates we put in on the bottom ground ( the picture for my header on this site is the posts and gates my wife and I put in). That project took us all day and we knew we didn’t have the time to put in a new gate and about 400 ft of new fencing if we did it ourselves, so we  hired someone to do the work for us.

This is the first two post that my wife and I had did the year before, This is the gate that I have a picture of at the top of my website.

 My friend Tom who lives in the area, suggested this Amish fence builder named David that does good work. We meet David in April on the farm for an estimate and he said he would do it for 400.00 for the labor plus the cost of materials. We excepted his bid and was going to meet us the the first Monday in May to begin work.

My wife Niki mowing a strip for the fence builders.

My wife and I arrived at the farm at 8:00 am before everyone else and the first thing we did was cut the barbwire fence where our main entrance gate was going to go. I then had my wife start mowing a strip where the new fence was going to be.

David our Amish fence builder with his driver and son, digging the holes for the post.

David and his crew arrived at 9:00 and after unloading the first thing they did was start digging for the wooden post. They set the wooden post first and then the metal T posts, they then built the H configuration with two wooden post and a metal brase with # 9 wire to secure the corners and on top of the hill. The wooden post are Hedge post, also know as Osage Orange. It is a very hard and rot resitant wood that will last many years. It is sometimes called Iron wood.

This is a good picture of the fence how they had to brace it at the top of our hill. This is done to make the fence stronger so when they stretch the fence and get it tight the post don’t start to lean over time from the pressure of the tightly stretched fence.

The picture above is David and his son that shows the H configuration that was used on the corners and on top of the hill.

They then put a strand of barbwire on top of the wolven wire.

This is a shot of the barbwire the goes on top being stretched tight.

It took them only one day to put in the fence, now the 4 acres around the building site is all fenced in. I still have to put in a new perimeter fence all around the 40 acres. That I will do myself when we move there.

This is a photo of the new gate and fence, now looking at this photo, maybe I should have called the farm The Double Arrow Ranch

Next post: Building the Pole Barn

About Gordon Milligan

I am a retired conductor for a commuter railroad in Chicago IL, I now live in and have bought a 40 acre farm in South Central Iowa that I have built from the ground up. My wife and I are trying to raise and grow most of my own food using sustainible and organic methods. I have a blog that journals my journey to becoming a farmer.
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3 Responses to Fence Building

  1. Jewels says:

    I should have started following you back when you started following me because I’ve been missing out on hearing everything you’ve been doing with your farm. Great progress Gordon! I’m jealous…

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