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Can I use standard welded fence wire for gabion baskets?

 
pollinator
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Location: Denver, CO
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Can I use standard welded fence wire for gabion baskets? Or do I need specialized materials? For context, this is a small, less the two foot retaining wall for a sunken cold frame.

Also, is there anything I could plant that would help hold things together after the wire rusts out, but would not be super aggressive as far as competing with salads in the frame? I'm assuming this does not exist.
 
steward
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I make gabions out of any old wire I have laying around. At my place in the desert, even non-galvanized wire takes decades to rust out...

 
pollinator
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Welded wire fencing comes apart fairly easily in my experience.  It comes apart when tensioning the baskets and the welds rust fairly quickly.  However, it would probably work in your case for a small retaining wall for the cold frame.

I use the wrapped/woven horse fencing and it works great.  The gabions I build are for check dams - so they are heavier duty.  The 5 foot fencing works good for a gabion 24" wide by 32" high (with 4" overlap at the seams).  Don't forget the intermediate gussets to keep the basket roughly rectangular.  
 
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Gilbert Fritz wrote:
Also, is there anything I could plant that would help hold things together after the wire rusts out, but would not be super aggressive as far as competing with salads in the frame? I'm assuming this does not exist.



Grapes are lovely, strong, and don't spread at the ground. The vines go everywhere, obviously, but just from the one trunk at the bottom.
 
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