DIY Garden Trellis

So, as you know, I added some new garden beds this year.  If you’re a regular blog-follower, you saw a picture of my new trellis in my Monday Musings post earlier in the week, but I wanted to go into a little more detail about it.  I am all about gardening for produce, but I want things to be aesthetically pleasing and fun for the kids too.  I do a lot of companion planning (THIS is an awesome resource) and include flowers and herbs mixed in with my garden veggies.  I have had this vision for a while to have a trellis, covered with climbing veggies, that you can walk under.  Doesn’t that sound fun?

Well, my vision has become a reality.  I love it when that happens!  Well, okay, it’s half a reality… I don’t have vining plants climbing up the side yet, but I do have my trellis up, and I wanted to share with you how easy it was to do, in case you want to make your own!

Now, you can buy pre-made arbor that is really nice and ornamental for $200 and upward.  For the size I wanted my arbor to cover, buying a pre-made one or several would have been too costly, so I had to go with the DIY method.

My materials:

Two 4×16 cattle panels, $20 each.
Six electric fence stakes, $1.40 each.
Twist ties, already owned.

I bought the cattle panels and stakes at the local McCoy’s building supply store, but you can also get them at Tractor Supply.

You will need a truck to get them home in, and someone to help you hold it in place as you work with the panels.

Here is the “before”.  I dug two beds, approximately 2.5 x 8 ft. long, with 3 ft in-between.  The beds face North to South, so that the shadow from the trellis will be thrown in front of the bed and not over the plants.  We want to give the plants plenty of sunshine!


These are the stakes.  See that little flat triangle?


Well, that part goes downward into the ground… the flat sides keep the pole from twisting once it’s in the ground, and helps secure it in place.

trellis3I pounded these down into the ground as far as I could get them to go.   Two on each end, and two in the middle.

Next, I had my girls help me bend the trellis and get it into place.  It took all four of us, but I’m thinking two adults could probably do it as well.  The cattle panels are quite sturdy, and don’t “give” easily.  Once you get it where you want it, there will be no danger of it caving in with the pressure of the plants or anything.

I used long twist-ties to tie the stakes to the panel everywhere they met.




Now it’s just waiting for climbing plants!


I plan to plant some climbing squash here, along with cucumbers, sour gherkins, and pole beans.  I’ll definitely keep you posted with its progress!

Ready for Spring!  ~Mama Tutu

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About Laura

A Christian wife, mother, daughter, former educator, photographer, amateur chef, pretend gardener, alto 🎶, book nerd, cancer-survivor and laundry-hater.

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11 Responses to DIY Garden Trellis

  1. KeriAnne Gunz February 28, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

    What will you be putting on your trellis? Also, are you doing anything new (stuff you’ve never grown) this year?

    • Laura February 28, 2013 at 9:40 pm #

      I am trying sour gherkin on your suggestion… also doing pickling cucumbers, climbing beans & trying two new squash varieties – lemon and a round zucchini. Trying a few new varieties of tomatoes as well. You can read the rest of my plans here:

  2. kim March 25, 2014 at 6:45 pm #

    Found you through interest wondering how this held up. Thanks

    • Laura March 25, 2014 at 6:48 pm #

      Hi Kim! The trellis is on it’s third garden season and is holding up great!

  3. tsheets May 27, 2014 at 12:55 pm #

    I just put up a trellis like this using cattle panels. First time for this style. I made it about 6-7 feet wide (I can still walk under it without bending over) and thought I’d try some small plants under it. For climbing the trellis, like you, I planted pole beans and cucumbers and some small squash (also a “small” watermelon..not sure how that will do). On the inside, I planted leaf lettuce, carrots, and bunching onions. Just some ideas for next time.

  4. Barbara October 27, 2015 at 9:54 pm #

    October 27th, 2015 8:50pm PST

    Hi Laura,

    I am a low-income (on disability) person and am looking to create an outdoor storage solution so I can stop paying $50/month for a tiny little space. I have a 5′ wide, 10′ deep space to work with. I see you guys made this for plants, but I am wanting to use this as a frame for covering it with tarps and other various materials to make it moisture (mold) proof…

    I realize that this post is not recent, but I’m looking at your “train” trellis, and would love to know how it was built. It looks reasonably inexpensive, but really well put together.
    I have a 5′ wide x 10′ deep space to work with. I see you guys made this for plants, but I am wanting to use this as a frame for covering it with tarps and other various materials to make it moisture (mold) proof…. The rounded roof would be perfect for water run-off.

    Getting the framework down looks easy…and would be perfect!!!! So glad I stumbled onto your site. Please let me know if instructions for this are available. :)

    God bless you,


  5. Will January 3, 2016 at 9:19 pm #

    Your Cattle mesh(?) aka known as concrete mesh used for climbing beans etc, is a VERY GOOD IDEA. Thank you.

    I suggest, that instead of wire ties such as the photos show when attaching them to the iron stakes which are hammered into the ground, I suggest a stronger and VERY EASY fitted plastic Zip Ties.
    Electricians use them a lot to hold bundles of wire cables together and for fixing them VERY SECURELY into specific places.
    They can be purchased form so many places

    One thing to consider, is the need to get Zip Ties that are Black rather than white in colour.

    BLACK ZIP TIES ARE UV LIGHT RESISTANT. (i.e. commercial ones)
    White ones are NOT UV light resistant.

    They are VERY strong and come in many different lengths and a few different widths.
    Small ones are still VERY strong.

    If they are too long, then wrap it around the pole and mesh several times.
    That way, if you want to dismantle the frames structure later, and you are careful of where you cut the Zip Tie, it means that you can use them over and over again until they become to short to use on this same structure.


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