Nigel Belcher Turf and Paving logo
Inspiration and ideas...

Inspiration > Versatility of Garden Sleepers

Garden sleepers are very popular in domestic gardens, providing a versatile natural material, that compliments both rural and contemporary gardens.

Garden sleepers - fencing
Project by Ian Pearce Landscape Contractors 

Popular uses of garden sleepers include, raised flower beds, garden edging, retaining walls, paths and steps. Due to them being a natural product, there are some considerations to make when choosing the right type of sleeper for your garden and project. The two main options to choose from are our Softwood and Hardwood sleepers.

Garden sleepers - patioGarden sleepers - patio
Project by Rich Green Gardens

Softwood sleepers

Softwood sleepers provide a cost-effective option, as well as being great to work with.They’re relatively light making them easy to cut and apply fixings. If your project requires the sleeper to be in direct contact with soil, we recommend you buy UC4 treated sleepers. This treatment will help preserve the wood, protecting it from decay or rotting, prolonging its life in your garden. These sleepers are particularly good for DIY projects, including raised beds and planters.

Hardwood sleepers

Hardwood sleepers including those made from oak, are much denser making them a considerably heavier alternative. Oak sleepers are a good option for particularly heavy-duty projects, including retaining walls a well as pathways. Hardwood sleepers often have a greater depth and range of colour initially, however if left untreated they will fade to a soft silver over time as they weather due to UV exposure.

Garden sleepers - raised borders

Tips to get the most from your sleepers:

Buy UC4 treated Softwood Sleepers to help protect the timber from decay, particularly if used in direct contact with soil.

If using sleepers in near contact with soil, consider having a channel of shingle between the sleeper and the soil. This will aid drainage, preventing the timber from being in constant contact with water. 

Use Osmo oil to treat your timber to protect them from UV radiation. As well as protecting the wood, it also helps to heighten the natural colour variation within the timber.

Ensure fixings used are made from stainless steel, particularly when working with oak sleepers. The tannins in oak can corrode regular steel fixings, as well as those that have been galvanised. To avoid using metal fixings all together, oak dowels, although more time consuming can look fantastic.

Contact 01635 202 700 for more information.

< Back to Inspiration and Ideas