How to Build a Twig Trellis

Overview

A twig trellis, as the name suggests, is a trellis made of twigs and tree branches, usually put together in a rustic grid. This gardening structure supports climbing vines and provides a vertical accent that enhances the appeal of any setting. A twig trellis does not stand out like a one made from PVC, aluminum or metal does, but harmonizes with the surrounding. Build a twig trellis yourself with sticks collected from your local field, park and backyard.

Step 1

Make bundles of similar-sized branches as you collect them for your diamond-grid trellis. Start looking for ½ inch diameter, 4-foot long sticks at least a month in advance, so you have plenty to build with, advises This Old House online. You can also purchase sticks in bundles from garden centers or orchards.

Step 2

Measure and cut twine 6-inch long pieces until you have a medium-sized bundle. You will use lengths of twine to secure the trellis as it is assembled. Also measure and cut a 5-inch "spacing" twig, and a 3-foot "height" twig. Use both these twigs as spacing and height reference guides respectively.

Step 3

Push a 5-foot-long support stick 8 inches into the ground as one end of the trellis. Push another support stick of the same height 10 feet away to mark the opposite end. Measure the distance between both corner twigs and push a third support twig in the exact center. Make sure all three are standing upright and are in a straight line, This Old House advises.

Step 4

Wind twine around a corner support stick, 2 to 3 inches above the ground. Extend it through to the center support, and over to the other corner support. Pull it taut and wind it around the support. This twine keeps the twig trellis erect during assembly.

Step 5

Center your 5-inch space-guide twig horizontally in front of the middle support twig. Push two twigs diagonally into the ground at a 60-degree angle,about 4 inches deep, at each end of the 5-inch twig. Keep both twigs parallel to one another. Push two more parallel twigs in the direction opposite to the previously inserted ones, also on the diagonal, so they overlap the support twig in front.

Step 6

Move the spacing guide down 5 inches to the right. Push two more twigs diagonally in the ground using the spacing guide, in the same direction as the first twigs inserted. Continue until you reach the support stick on the far right. Move the spacing guide back to the center and begin placing stick on the left side of the trellis--these should be angled to the left. Continue placing twigs until you reach the left support.

Step 7

Secure all twigs at the points they intersect with each other. The criss-crossing twigs should form diamond-shapes.

Step 8

Hold the 3-foot height-guide next to your assembled twig trellis and inspect the top. Use pruners to snip off excess lengths, so the tops of all twigs are level and your trellis is uniform. Clip off any twigs extending past the edges of the side supports.

Things You'll Need

  • 60, ½-inch diameter, 4-foot-long hardwood sticks
  • Twine
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • 5-inch long hardwood twig
  • 3-foot long hardwood stick
  • 5-foot long hardwood stick (3)
  • Hand pruners

References

  • This Old House: How to Build a Diamond-Patterned Twig Trellis
Keywords: twig trellis, homemade trellis, diamond pattern trellis

About this Author

Tanya Khan is a freelance author and consultant, having written hundreds of thousands of words for various online and print sources. She has an MBA in Marketing but her passion lies in giving her words wings.