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Note that the Hardie folks do not endorse it used this way but you see the larger sheets of HardieBoard used in many ways on fences in Venice, CA and it's very durable as many of those fences have not been painted.
We had the builder's guys build the framework, which P then spent 3 days painting with a solid stain. Then P, along with a good friend and another helper, spent another 3 days hanging the boards. As you can see, these are hung horizontal and the design optimizes their 12' lengths whenever possible, plus the fact you can purchase a range of widths.
The planks come primed on one side and we elected to hang that side inside with a view to painting the outside. However, we have come to like the look, especially as the evenly spaced 6.25" planks have a different tone. So we now plan to use a clear masonary sealer.
This photo also shows one of the six /\ shaped setbacks in the fence where will plant stuff in front.
A view from the end with the triangle capped off, a code requirement to ensure traffic sightlines where the streets meet. In fact we set it back further than needed and plan to put a small tree in front of the external side.
An elevated interior view of the garden, showing the framework.