Winter Proofing Your Decking

Taking Care of Your Decking in Staffordshire

You might be pleased to know, we are only a few short months away from the sun glimmering over your back garden expertly showcasing your perfectly maintained decking. The main challenge facing any respectful decking owner in Staffordshire is successfully navigating the trials and tribulations of the winter period.

Whilst many of us can not wait for the return of this sociable time, there are still a lot of hurdles we have to overcome to return to barbecues with family and friends. 

We have recently focused on efforts to mitigate the effects of winter on your fencing in Staffordshire so we thought why not look at how we can ensure your decking is in the best shape possible throughout the winter. 

De-icing

Your car windscreens are not the only things that will need de-icing this winter, your decking will as well. 

Having a frost and ice covered decking can create many problems. Besides the fact that ice can potentially cause damage to the finishing of your decking, it can produce a quite significant slipping hazard. 

One of the best ways to combat this is by applying mild de-icing salts. The salts can include potassium chloride before the frost has even had time to form. However, you should only enact this technique if you have had your decking water sealed. 

Water Sealing

Following on from our most recent point, you should ensure your decking is efficiently water sealed. 

Deck sealers (as they are called amongst those involved in the industry) penetrate the wood and offer a protective coating against water absorption. Not only does this give you incredible flexibility when it comes to treating your wood. But it protects against the formation of mold, rot and any other potential damage.

Clean Thoroughly 

This one might seem like a no brainer but correctly and thoroughly cleaning your decking is an essential ingredient in decking maintenance. 

You will want to make sure that your decking is cleaned properly with soap, water and preferably a high power pressure washer. 

Additionally, if you have pets you will want to make ensure any potential fouling is removed promptly and effectively. This helps to prevent stains and the build-up of potentially harmful bacteria.

Contact Us

If you have any other questions on how to best look after your decking this winter, please do get in contact with us.

Winter Fence in Shropshire

Winter Proofing Your Fencing in Shropshire

Fencing in the winter months can produce many challenges. Up and down the country, fencing Shropshire and Staffordshire is covered in frost or sometimes even snow. 

Whilst we have been blessed with uncharacteristically good weather for this time of year, the cold months still present many different challenges, especially when it comes to how best to reserve and protect your fencing. 

At Weston Sawmill, we care about all of your fencing needs. So let’s take a look at some of the most helpful tips and tricks to winter proof your fencing in Staffordshire and Shropshire this winter. 

Waterproofing 

On average, the UK in January sees almost 18 days a month worth of rainfall whilst February and March are almost, if not just as, damp. In Staffordshire, the average temperature for January through to March is only 5 degrees celsius. There is also upwards of a 20% increased chance of snowfall during the aforementioned months. 

From this you might understand that it is of paramount importance to ensure your fence is protected against wet weather. 

One of the most effective ways to do this is to apply a silicone or acrylic sealant to your fence. Not only does this protective sealant act as a barrier protecting your fence from water and cold weather, it also protects against UV Rays and other extreme weather conditions too. 

Snow

As previously touched upon, the colder winter months in the UK can see snow. As any UK citizen would tell you when the snow starts to fall, it can be quite problematic. 

Whilst you might be worried about getting sufficient shopping in, you might want to consider when potential damage the snow might cause to your fence. 

Snow will eventually melt and when it does this, it will leave your fence incredibly cold and damp. If left untreated, this can lead to your fence leaning, this where the previously mentioned treatment comes in. 

Perform Necessary Checks

It is essential to perform checks when the weather is still good to ensure your fence is in the best condition possible to tackle harsh weather that might come it’s way. These checks can include: 

  • Checking the posts to ensure they are sturdy 
  • Removing any debris or any loose hanging branches
  • A general physical wellbeing check

These are just some of the necessary checks you can perform to ensure your fence will be in the best shape possible this winter. 

Contact Us

If you have any other questions regarding protecting your fencing this coming winter, be sure to contact us

Additionally, be sure to check out our website for more information regarding fencing and decking in Staffordshire, Cheshire and Shropshire. 

Recycling Your Christmas Tree

Best Ways to Dispose of your Christmas Tree this January

The scenes in most British gardens this January will be one of frost covered grass, footpaths, decking and unfortunately; lonely Christmas tree’s inconveniently occupying the large section of irrelevant space. 

If you have finally managed to hoover up the remaining leaves your seasonal tree had recently flaked all over the living carpet, you now might be asking yourself, what is the best way to dispose of this once so festive tree? Luckily, we at Weston Sawmill have got you covered. From the many different ways you can recycle your Christmas tree, to the different advice local council’s offer on Christmas tree disposals. 

General UK Recycling Tips 

In the UK, we have a wide range of options available to us when it comes to recycling. Let’s quickly go over the 3 main approaches you can take to recycle your old Christmas tree: 

  • Replant it. A good way to give your tree a new lease of life is to repot. You can do this either in your garden. Or by simply giving it to your local garden centre for them to repot instead. 
  • Take your Christmas tree to a recycling centre. Here they can repurpose many elements of your tree. These can include making needles from the mulch and re-using the wood for decking, cupboards or any other wood-related products. 
  • Speak to your local council for any special recycling tips. This one is as simple as that.  

Disposing of your Christmas Tree in Staffordshire & Shropshire 

Whilst other areas may vary, disposing of a Christmas tree in Shropshire and Staffordshire is relatively straight forward. 

Steve Mitchell, Veolia Director for the West Midlands, has previously advised that Shropshire residents can simply dispose of their Christmas tree by putting it in their garden recycling bin during the early weeks of January. Steve went on to add that if the tree is over 5ft, you just need to cut the tree into smaller sections to enable it to fit into your recycling bin. 

Recycling your Christmas tree in Staffordshire is a little different but just as easy. Real Christmas trees can be taken to a variety of locations to be recycled. These can include Fletcher’s Garden Centre in Eccleshall, The Green Recycling Centre in Barlaston and Household Waste Recycling Centres at sites in Stafford and Stone. Be sure to check the advice for your local area. Recyling your Christmas tree in Wolverhampton might be slightly different to disposing of it in Stoke-on-Trent. 

Donate Your Christmas Tree to a Good Cause

Alternatively, you can donate your tree to the Katharine House Hospice. They have already collected over 61,000 trees and raised well over £900,000. I  think most people can agree this is rather impressive. So if you are still feeling in the Christmas spirit and would like to donate your old tree, be sure to look at their website for more details.

What Now? 

Now the clutter of Christmas, including the aforementioned Christmas tree, is out of the way, you might be looking to renovate your garden this coming year. If you are looking for landscaping, concrete products and decking in the Midlands be sure to contact us.

Christmas decorations - Weston Sawmill

Christmas decorations inspirations for 2021

You may have noticed recently looking around some shops that Christmas decorations have started to infiltrate the shelves – but what style of festive display are you going for this year?

For this blog, Weston Sawmill will talk you through some of the must-have ideas for 2021.

The variety of choices for Christmas decorations

Multicoloured novelty baubles

If you are looking for a modern look that is packed with personality, combining a bold, vibrant palette with a host of quirky details we have some ideas for you.
After purchasing your traditional tree, add brightly coloured striped, glitter and star-shaped ornaments. Top off the tree with a neon star for a look that the whole family will love.

Silver and white decorations

There are plenty of ways to put together a sparkly tree, including vintage-look silver baubles in a number of shapes and finishes with sparkling stars, resin reindeer with a snow globe bauble taking pride of place with a light-up star finishing off your magical tree.

Classic red and gold

Give a timeless red festive theme a touch of luxe with a generous sprinkling of gold. Start this off with shatterproof baubles in jewel-like red tones and add nostalgic red Nutcracker figures, traditional Father Christmas ornaments, opulent red birds, golden bell wreaths and future heirloom gold and red floral ornaments. Tie this look together with a studded red velvet bow topper for an unexpected twist.

Luxe silver decorations

A snow-dusted tree is an ideal backdrop for white, silver and clear baubles and Narnia-esque snowflakes, hanging icicles and silver stags. Personalise your tree with applique letters for each family member and finish with a contemporary light-up star and a faux-fur tree skirt.

Glam gold tree decorations

If you can’t turn up the glam at Christmas, when can you? You can create a gorgeous golden theme by combining metallic antique-style baubles with fabulous cocktail-shaped ornaments and festive wording in gold script. Add personality using quirky nature-inspired decorations in a similar palette, such as sparkling hedgehogs, glimmering acorns, cloche-covered mushrooms and bee applique decorations.

Modern red and white theme

Deck your tree with novelty decorations in a classic red and white palette. From felt robins and candy canes to a mitten and bobble hat set, you can add some humour to your traditional theme. Mix in a selection of classic red decorations and top your tree with a jolly Santa to keep the overall theme festive.

Get in touch for more information

If you have any questions about Christmas decorations or our range of Christmas trees, please do not hesitate to contact Weston Sawmill now.

Don’t forget we also stock our own range of decorations that can help your tree look spectacular this festive season.

christmas tree - Weston Sawmill

Reasons why you should invest in a real Christmas tree

The festive season is just a few months away, and maybe it’s time you invest in a real Christmas tree.

For those of you hesitant to invest in a real Christmas tree, you need not worry. Real Christmas trees are a lot easier to maintain than first thought. Before you start worrying about hoovering up pine needles every day, remember we have Nordmann Fir that keeps their needles.

If you are still not convinced, read our latest blog below.

5 Reasons to choose a real Christmas tree

Good for the environment

Real Christmas trees are planted especially in our nursery to be sold for the festive season; meaning every tree planted simply sustains the real Christmas tree market.

The higher the demand the more trees are planted. Because of this; the Carbon Trust estimating that real trees are up to 10 times better for the environment than their artificial counterparts. In terms of environmental impact; it would take ten years of re-using a fake tree to break. In this time you could have just one real Christmas tree.

Because trees produce more oxygen, tree plantations and farms will help to improve the atmosphere.

Do it for the kids!

Every family has a designated tree decorator, either mum or dad, depending on the household. As for the kids, they could be itching at the chance to help, even if it is changed back afterwards.

Let’s face it, the tree will be ignored again until the presents start gathering underneath it.

This changes when you invest in a real tree. As you can make it part of your annual tradition to decide what tree type will match your fairy lights.
Children will often pay more attention to a tree they have helped choose; rather than one getting pulled out of your attic and/or storage space.

Being eco-friendly

Most faux trees are made of plastic. This means that when they get too tired and old to be propped up in someone’s living room they will be discarded and make their way to landfill. Remember fake trees can’t be recycled.

A real tree means that if it is discarded and thrown away, it is biodegradable and does zero net damage to the environment. You also have the option to compost your tree once you are finished with it.

Even if your tree ends up in green waste bins, it will more than likely end up as compost anyway.

The other option is to purchase one of our potted trees that keeps on growing year after year. You may need to cut it down to size eventually, but other than this it is low maintenance and saves more trees being chopped down every year.

Get the true smell of Christmas

Unlike faux trees, real Christmas trees give off a wonderful, subtle fresh pine needle smell, which can never truly be replicated.

Your nose will remind you of this fresh scent every day. If you have never really invested in a real tree before, you are truly missing out on one of the joys of the festive season.

Free up storage space

Some of us are lucky to have plenty of storage space at our disposal, however; others are not so lucky and will struggle to find space to store last year’s tree.

Even trees that can be dismantled into smaller parts can still take up a lot of storage room. If you live in a city or a property with limited storage space, purchasing a real tree is the best idea.

Even potted trees don’t take up too much space and can be kept on balconies or in your back garden until next year.

Get in touch with any questions

If you have any questions about Weston Sawmill’s range of Christmas trees; please do not hesitate to contact us now.

We offer Spruce, Nordmann Fir and potted Nordmann and Norway Spruce trees at our nursery based in Weston-under-Lizard, Shropshire.

Christmas trees in Staffordshire - Christmas tree

When is it acceptable to put up your Christmas tree?

Last year was extremely tough on everyone, with lockdowns and the pandemic to deal with – and many people decided to stretch the Christmas period out over a longer period of time. There were some cases, such as radio DJ Greg James who kept his Christmas tree up until March of this year!

Hopefully, this year will be completely different and we can all have a great festive season.

For this blog, Weston Sawmill will give you suggestions to mull over before spying the mulled wine in the supermarket.

Straight after Halloween?

For some people, Christmas decorations go up as soon as the 1st of November.
Data from some of the UK’s biggest retailers has revealed this in 2020, with a record number of customers seemingly decorating earlier than ever.

The stats also revealed that 40% of customers plan to decorate areas around the house they haven’t previously, such as hallways, stairs and outdoors.

The Tesco Christmas Report 2020 also revealed 2.4 million people stating they will decorate their home before December starts.

It depends if you buy a real Christmas tree

If you are buying a real Christmas tree this year (such as ones supplied by Weston Sawmill), you should consider putting it up around the start of December. A real Christmas tree will survive around four weeks, but if properly cared for it could last longer.

1st December

The start of December is always a popular choice for the start of the Christmas period, with many decking the halls as soon as 1st December. According to data from Tesco, 25% of people will have their trees up by this time.

Advent

Advent is the period before Christmas that celebrates the birth of Jesus and is very important in the Christian calendar. Tradition often dictates that Christmas trees are put up at the start of Advent which begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas.

12 Days Before
For some they choose to put their decorations up 12 days before Christmas, meaning you will be turning your home into a winter wonderland from 13th December.

Get in touch for more information

If you have any questions about Weston Sawmill’s range of Christmas trees, please do not hesitate to contact us now.

micro-climate garden landscaping

The most innovative ways to modernise your garden

If you are in need of some inspiration to modernise your garden, Weston Sawmill is here to help.

Whether it is painting an old fence, getting clever with your plants or repurposing older items, you can change your outdoor space, even if you are on a budget.

For this blog, we will give you plenty of ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

6 ways to revamp your outdoor space

  1. Grow from seed – One of the cheapest ways to get a thriving garden is to sow seeds. This could flower seeds or vegetable seeds, just remember to check the seed packet size, as some contain far more seed than you will be able to sow in a single year in an average garden.
  2. Shape Up – An easy and cost-effective way to transform your garden is by cutting your lawn into a clearly defined shape; such as a circle, a square or an oblong. Mark it out using a string and spade to cut away the excess grass. This task should only take an afternoon to complete.
  3. A fresh coat of paint – You will be surprised by how much a lick of paint can transform a tired, old fence. Providing a striking backdrop for greenery and jewel-coloured plants will give visitors a whole new interpretation of your outdoor space.
  4. Create a cosy outdoors – With people looking to make the most of their land and potentially extend their homes, and consider their gardens as a ‘room’. If you have already invested in high-quality decking from Weston Sawmill, you could also consider an outdoor rug and accessorise with some garden lanterns and outdoor cushions.
  5. Gravel leads the way – A gravel garden path is a great idea that can be completed on a budget. A path paved with gravel and concrete slabs will add some magic to your garden and be the perfect go-between your home and a shed or outdoor play area.
  6. Repurpose your shed – During the pandemic many people have been repurposing their current garden apparatus, with some people creating bespoke garden bars from their sheds!
    Your shed can house garden furniture in the winter and then be the perfect destination for a cocktail hour during the summer.

Got any questions? Contact Weston Sawmill now

If you have any questions about transforming your garden, please do not hesitate to get in touch now. Our team of experts can offer you all the advice you need to make your outdoor space look truly special.

decking in wolverhampton

Decking Ideas For the Summertime

Are you thinking of adding some decking to your garden? Summer is finally here; and the sun is shining. As such, there is no better time to transform your garden into an outdoor paradise.

If you need some inspiration; Weston Sawmill have got you covered with this post giving you all the information you need.

Taking your decking to the next level

You can lay decks at different heights and levels, depending on the shape and surface of your garden.

A raised deck is the best option for sloped or uneven gardens to create a flat surface for a dining table or a seating area. If you build a tall enough frame, you can even use the space underneath your decks for additional garden storage.

A ground-level deck keeps your surface flat in the garden and is more straightforward to install than raised decks.

Choosing the best shape for your garden

You need to be open-minded when it comes to the shape of your decking and design it to best fit the space you have available. Rectangular or square-shaped decks are traditional and create clean; angular lines in your garden whereas straight-edged decks are easier to construct than one with a curved edge.

Decks with a curved edge help to create a softer finish to your garden plus it looks great with bark, gravel or grass against the curved edge.

Bring colour to your garden

Our timber deck boards can be painted or stained with decking paint, which is available from most DIY retailers. For a contemporary and stylish finish go for a black and grey or merge navy and white for a nautical design.

For a two-tone look, you could paint the deck boards different colours to the railings or balustrades around it. Complementary colours such as greys and whites are a great choice or you could mix it up with a bold colour contrasting with natural wood.

Get in touch with any questions

If you have any questions about Weston Sawmill’s range of decking boards, please do not hesitate to contact us today.

fencing - aggregates

What Can I Use Postcrete For?

Weston Sawmill offers 20kg bags of Postcrete, which is a ready-to-use blend of selected sand, cement and additives formulated for fixing wooden, concrete and metal posts.

The beauty of Postcrete is that is ready to use straight out of the bag, with no mixing required.

Using Postcrete for Sitework

Here is a simple guide to using Postcrete –

  • Dig your hole to the correct depth and width relevant to post size
  • Fill the hole with water to a third of the depth
  • Pour the mix evenly around the post until no standing water is visible, meaning it completely covers the water surface. Also, sprinkle water on top of the powder.
  • Position and level the post as required, with the setting taking place within 5-10 minutes.
  • When set, cover the top of the hole with soil or grass

Make sure you do not mix Postcrete with water by hand or machine.

It is packed in new weatherproof packaging and needs to be handled and stored with care as it is a cement-based material. It can be stored, unopened in either indoor or outdoor conditions, with information on the maximum storage located on the bag itself.
Remember, all equipment should be cleaned with water and not flushed down the drain.

Health and Safety Advice

Contact between cement powder and body fluids, such as sweat and eye fluids may cause irritation, dermatitis or burns. Cement is classified as an irritant under the Chemical (Hazard Information and Packaging) Regulations.

Contact Weston Sawmill with any queries

If you have any questions about Postcrete or gravel packs, please do not hesitate to get in touch now. Weston Sawmill has been providing a host of garden solutions for clients across Shropshire and Staffordshire since 1993, including decking, fencing and all aggregates to ensure you have the complete solution for your outdoor space.

If you need further inspiration, please read more of our blog posts.

fencing in shropshire

Telltale signs you need new fencing

Wooden fences, when cared for properly can last up to 20 years but there is a time when you will need to replace them. This is where Weston Sawmill comes in handy.

We have been providing customers right across Shropshire with high-quality fencing, including premier overlap panel and sturdy close board panel fences.

5 reasons you to replace your fencing

Most fences will likely last around 10 years, but how do you know when it is time for something new? Here are five tell-tale signs you need to replace your fence instead of repairing it again –

Rotting – While one rotten board is one thing, generalised rotting in your fence means it is time to replace it. In wooden fences, the rot will happen in areas where the fence is closest to the ground. This is where the boards experience the most sustained moisture which accelerates rot. Rot can be prevented with regular maintenance and by applying a preservative. Nature will eventually take its course and rotting will begin in fence posts and boards.

Leaning – Wind, rain and shifting ground can cause your fence to lean off to one side because the general structure is losing strength. Slight leaning in only one section can be repaired by replacing or adjusting a few fence posts. Please note, that generalised leaning across the fence is a sign of irreparable damage.

Splits and Missing Boards – One split or missing board can be easily replaced. Lots of split and missing boards mean it is time to start over. Not only will this ruin your aesthetic appeal but it will also result in structural problems.

Loose and Missing Fasteners – Screws and nails could become loose or even fall out of your fencing over time. These can be replaced, although over time the wood may not be able to withstand a new screw or nail. If your fence has started to be wobbly due to loose and missing fasteners, it is useless to try and replace them all.

Repairs become too costly – When repairs start to become costly it is time to invest in a new fence.

Get in touch for more information

If you have any questions about fencing, please do not hesitate to contact us today.