LJN Blog Posts

Using Railway Sleepers for Garden Design

Design and structure of your garden can really be enhanced by using railway sleepers in many different ways.  I am going to outline the different uses for railway sleepers in your garden and how they can help create a totally different space than what existed before. 

The first thing to note in relation to sleepers are that there are two different types, new and reclaimed.  Although reclaimed sleepers look great and add a brilliant rustic feel to your garden, they can only be used in certain ways - as they have been treated in creosote they must not be used where they will come into contact with growing fruit or vegetables or anywhere that they could come into frequent contact with human skin.  It is therefore best to use protective gloves when handling reclaimed railway sleepers. 

Best uses for them are building steps in your garden, they are a useful material to use as they are very hard wearing. To make the steps secure you will have to lay them in a concrete bed.  In some places chicken wire can also be placed over the sleepers as they can become slippery in wet weather.  Adding some rustic looking garden fencing can also help complete the ‘worn’ look if that is your end goal.  

New railway sleepers can be used for a much wider range of things in your garden, they are still very hard wearing but do not have the charm that reclaimed sleepers may possess.  They can be used to build garden furniture including decking and tables, they can also be used for inside use, for windowsills or fire places. 

Building up flower beds to give some structure to your garden is a great use for new sleepers as you can begin to define paths and areas in your garden.  Building a vegetable patch is also a great use for sleepers and this can be built in a size and shape to suit your garden. 

The possibilities are endless really so have a think about how sleepers could be used to create the ‘wow’ factor in your garden.    



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