Information on Garden Trellises


A trellis supports vining plants, displaying the ornamental flowers or foliage. When used with fruiting plants, a trellis helps prevent ground contact and insect damage. Many gardens use trellises to separate areas, provide privacy or as a decorative element.


A trellis is a latticework to support plants, usually in a yard or garden. The lattice itself may be horizontal, set on an angle, or consist of more complex designs.


Trellises date from early history. Pictures of trellises have been unearthed in the ruins of Pompeii, and were incorporated as decorative elements in medieval gardens.


Trellises commonly use wood posts and slats. Wood construction should be treated with a preservative. Wire or twine running through hooks will support lighter vines like beans and morning glories. Other trellis designs are made of vinyl, often in white. Metal trellises offer strength and can incorporate complex designs.


A trellis may be a rectangular panel, a fan or an arch. It can be used against a wall or fence, be set into a container or be freestanding. The latticework itself can incorporate patterns, and metal trellises may have detailed scroll work.


Vegetation can become too heavy for the trellis, eventually collapsing the structure. Metal trellises may become too hot in sun, burning vining plants. Bees, wasps, spiders and other insects often build nests or webs among latticework.


  • Roman Agricultural History
  • Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, 2010: Trellis
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