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Which rope is best for decking?

decked bridge with decking rope and posts

What is decking rope?

Decking rope is a type of synthetic or natural rope used to cordon off decking areas. These ropes would usually be attached to posts surrounding a decked area. 

Types of decking rope

There are two types of decking rope to choose from: natural or synthetic. The type of rope chosen depends entirely on preference, but there are different benefits to both.

Natural decking ropes

Natural decking ropes are made from natural materials – given the name – such as plant fibres. The bonus to using a natural rope is that they are biodegradable, and this is due to the plant fibres within the rope. However, they are still incredibly strong despite being made of sustainable materials, and make a perfect choice for decking rope.

Sisal and manila decking ropes are two plant-based options to choose from. With a three strand construction for extra strength, they both look great as a border to a decked area, patio or a garden bridge. Natural ropes are available in a variety of lengths and thicknesses, allowing you to choose a rope that meets your aesthetic or practical needs.

When it comes to outdoor use, we recommend pre-soaking your natural ropes as they will shrink when wet. This should be followed by treating sisal or manila ropes with a water repellant spray. In doing this, you’ll prevent any changes after installation and ensure longevity.

Synthetic decking ropes

Synthetic decking ropes are formed of, you guessed it, synthetic materials. Commonly, these types of ropes will contain polypropylene fibres. Synthetic fibres such as these are extremely hard-wearing and sturdy, so there is no chance of damage or breakages. When it comes to appearance, these ropes look and feel just like their plant fibred counterparts.

Polyhemp or hempex ropes are a great synthetic option and will suit any and all of your decking needs. These synthetic ropes come in a range of diameters with the same three strand combo, meaning that they are all equally as strong. They will also not shrink or react to heavy rainfall due to their waterproof properties.

Which rope is best for decking?

Many people prefer a synthetic polyhemp rope to a natural based decking rope; this is because synthetic ropes tend to last longer and are less prone to wear and tear. Synthetic ropes also look very similar to natural ropes, therefore they blend in nicely to outdoor spaces and don’t look tacky. 

However, if you’re looking for an environmentally friendly rope option, natural ropes are still a great choice of decking rope. They may take a bit more care and upkeep than a synthetic rope, but they’re a lot better for the environment.

How to use decking ropes

Decking ropes have a wide variety of uses and not all of them involve decking. So, what else can you use your decking ropes for?

1. Decking areas

A favourite use of decking ropes is for decking areas. Whether you’ve recently added decking to your garden, to house patio furniture or maybe a hot tub, decking rope can also be a great addition to this. Construct a border around your decking with wooden posts and some rope. This will keep your area separate from the rest of the garden.

2. Garden bridges

If you’re lucky enough to have a small pond in your garden,  it’s likely you can also fit a garden bridge. Decking rope can be used to create a handrail along your bridge for added safety, or a few can be used to make a fence either side.

3. Plant in sections

Decking rope can also be used to section off your plants, allowing you to keep your garden uniform and neat. Plus, when it comes to planting a new species, you can keep everything organised.

4. Rope swings

Making rope swings out of decking rope is a popular choice for those looking for a cool DIY project for their garden. Granted you will need quite a bit of space and a tree to get started, but it’s still a great use. We recommend purchasing a sturdy plank of wood to use for the seat and attaching your decking rope to this. However, it is best to look up some thorough instructions before starting.

5. Handrails and fencing

Section off your lawn from the path with a decking rope border. Or add some decking rope handrails to your outside steps. 

Don’t forget to use decking rope fittings for all of your DIY or garden projects. If you need any extra advice on which decking rope to pick, or on how to maintain your natural decking ropes, contact our team today.

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