The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

cave thatching


I had thought of having a thatched cover for the “cave”, whatever shape it turned out to be when I’d finally got it built.

I checked out “thatching” – most of it was for houses, by companies, very little “how-to”. Found a site where one could purchase thatch panels for DIY, but those wouldn’t have fitted any structure as small as I was thinking of.

Found a “survival” site that showed how to build a backwoods hut; it was thatched with grasses bent over and tied round the horizontal poles, which looked do-able … if I could find the necessary supplies.

Tried Googling “straw”, “hay” “reeds”, but only got drinking straws or straw bales for rabbit hutches etc, certainly not long enough to use as I wanted: tried “long straw” etc, but nothing their either.

Finally got a result with “Craft straw” – went to the site, but I couldn’t access half the page (I have to use non-standard screen resolution, which a lot of web designers don’t allow for – I sometimes email these sites to ask them to think about visually-impaired people’s needs – actually got an answer from them, which is a first!)

They may have exactly what I want – but I can’t find out.

I had thought of getting one of those reed screens and using that: wrapping a length around the sides, and cutting lengths and tying them into bundles to use as “roof thatch”.

That’s why I bought the brushwood screen from B&Q, but when I opened it I was very disappointed – have I been sold a dud or are they all like this?

I did try cutting a section, but it was hard work to cut the wood level and the wire binding; I’d need about half-a-dozen screens all told – and have got a very sore hand in the process.

Amazon has a “thatch screen” on offer; one review said that it was flimsier than they’d expected; I asked if it’d be useable as thatch, and he said it might, but it’d need bunching up, which was always my intention.

However, having seen the B&Q “screen”, I’m reluctant to buy what might be another dud. Not sure what I’m going to use this one for, as it’s no use for what I’d bought it for.

I’d wanted to make the structure of as much natural materials as possible – seems unlikely without considerable effort and expense. Amazon has some lightweight waterproof tent material, so I’ll probably end up with that.

More blog posts by franl155

Previous post: Cave Mark #2

Next post: My new breadmaker



Try googling roof thatching, I found a youtube site , didn't watch it though.....

6 Oct, 2014


thanks, Pam. I thought I'd tried all the "thatching" keywords, but I'll give htat a go.

6 Oct, 2014


That brushwood screen doesn't look fit for any purpose Fran I couldn't see that lasting for very long at all !

6 Oct, 2014


Hope it works may get details of how to thatch a cottage though!

6 Oct, 2014


I agree with Amy, Fran ! There are quite a few different types of thatch screening at a big garden centre we go to. Have you one near you that could help ?

6 Oct, 2014


thanks Amy and Pam and Rose.

@ Amy - I can't see that brushwood "screen" being much use for anything other than firewood - even tried doubling it but still hardly a "screen".

@ Pam - lol, did - but tehre were other vids that led on from that one, how to UK and Africa and Bali thatching. My prob is getting the materials - once I've got htem, I can cut and hack and make my own mini-thatch bundles. I even checked out "reed mats" and "straw mats", no use.

@ Rose - there's a couple of Garden Centres fairly nearby - a Percy Thrower and another one across the road - when I went there it seemed to be totally deserted. At least at PT I should be able to look at various screening materials and find one that might work - then find it elsewhere, cheaper! unless I spend £££ to justify the delivery charge, which i probably might.

6 Oct, 2014


I googled 'buy thatch roofing uk' and came up with thatch roofing tiles......not cheap but look right I think.....

7 Oct, 2014


I found those too, Pam; I saved the link and need to work out how the sizes they have would fit what I want to build, or how I can adapt that to fit the tiles, or if the tiles can be cut to fit. So long as they don't do bulk orders only! so many others do - one "tjhatching materials" site only sells in tonnes

7 Oct, 2014


We covered our 'sentry box' seat with strips if tiled felt to cover the roof and part way down the sides. During very heavy rain this has kept it waterproof when rain pours off the canopy and splatters about. How heavy this would be on the structure you propose I do not know Fran. At least this product can be bought in increments and handled easily in lengths.

8 Oct, 2014


thanks, Dorjac, another great suggestion that I'd never thought of! will check that out xx

9 Oct, 2014

Add a comment

Recent posts by franl155

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    3 Jul, 2010

  • amy

    Gardening with friends since
    17 Apr, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    14 Apr, 2011

  • Gardening with friends since
    25 Feb, 2011

  • Gardening with friends since
    22 Oct, 2008