The thing about a cedar fence is that, unlike trees, it doesn't just sit there and look pretty for decades. In a few short years, the fence is going to need maintenance.
I went to Home Depot to find out what I needed to take care of my fence. We had just moved and extended the fence in order to incorporate part of the front yard with the back yard. Now, the big old elm tree was enclosed, and we were oh, so proud of our work. Look at all of the space we have! And, privacy!
So, back to Home Depot, port where the reality of home ownership smacks you upside the head. A helpful salesperson told me all that I needed to know, which was that I could look forward to applying a cleanser to the surface in order to open up the pores. After it dried sufficiently, I could apply my chosen oil-based sealant.
It almost sounds like a facial.
I bought a small bottle of cleaner, a brush, and a 5-gallon bucket of wood preservative and stain. $144 later, I was stocked and ready to get to work.
A project such as this is the kind of moment where the idea of teenage children is appealing. I do not yet possess one of these indentured servants, and the kittens are absolutely worthless at do-it-yourself. Unless you require a piece of furniture reduced to shreds.
The cleanser is serious. It requires watering your landscaping before use in order to avoid killing it, but after this process you can apply and hose it down without a worry. I watered, watered, watered.
My fence is getting better care than my face.
While washing sections of fence it is recommended that one keep these areas damp for the 10 - 15 minutes before rinsing thoroughly. I suppose this is what really gets the wood to open up its pores. What's weird is that after I rinsed, I could tell the boards were clean. The pores were open and ready to receive a protective coating to keep out the damaging rays of the sun and effects of harsh weather.
Not so much with my face.
Half the fence, both sides, were washed in one afternoon one and a half weeks ago. I finished the rest of it just the other day.
I do not like this, Sam I am.
The staining is going well. I'm almost one quarter of the way to halfway point. The threat of rain halted my specifically charted progress. It makes me feel like I'm getting a lot done when I count to the hundredths place.
Now that I think of it, 1,600 square feet of cedar fence is looking more and more like a decision made while drinking margaritas one summer night. It was like someone shouted, "Hey! You know what we need? A million board feet of cedar that needs to be washed and restained every couple of years!" And we were all, "brilliant!" and thought it was the most amazing idea, ever.
And you thought pot made you stupid.