What Vegetables Grow on a Trellis

Not every yard has space for a large vegetable garden, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy homegrown vegetables. Increasing the space in your yard is simple: just look upwards. Some vegetables seem to take up a lot of room, but growing them on a trellis will free your space and still give you fresh vegetables.

Pole Beans and Peas

Both peas and pole beans (not bush beans) do better on a trellis than left to grow however they like. The prolific pole bean grows up a trellis by twining its stems around the supports. Peas have tendrils that grab onto the trellis for the support. Pea varieties include English peas or common garden peas, plus edible pod peas like snap or sugar. Pole beans come in green, yellow and purple varieties, all of which taste similar when cooked.


Most gardeners place tomato plants in a cage for support or let them grow without support. But tomatoes grow very well when tied to a trellis. The trellis keeps the tomatoes off the ground, which means less rot, and away from pests and rodents. Use soft ties rather than plastic twist ties, as the soft ties won't cut into the tomato stems. Cherry tomatoes and yellow pear tomatoes do especially well on a trellis.


Cucumbers do better with a trellis than when left on the ground. The vine will send out thick tendrils that wrap around the trellis. The cucumbers will grow straight because they're hanging from the vine, rather than crooked when left on the ground. Cucumbers vary by size from the smaller pickling variety, which are fine for eating fresh, to the larger salad cucumbers.


Huge 20-lb. watermelons won't grow on a vine because they're too heavy but the smaller varieties will. So will cantaloupes. The trick is to make hammocks for the young melons and attach the ends of the hammock to the trellis. As the melons grow, the hammocks support them and keep them from breaking off the vine. Old pantyhose makes great melon hammocks.

Winter Squash

Winter squash, such as acorn, Hubbard, and spaghetti, grow on vines that can be grown up a trellis. Use the hammock technique to support the squash as they grow.

Keywords: growing vegetables upwards, using trellis in vegetable garden, what vegetables need a trellis

About this Author

Katie Rosehill's first book was published in 2000. Since then she has written additional books as well as screenplays, website content and e-books. Her articles have appeared on various websites. Rosehill holds a Master of Business Administration from Arizona State University. Her articles specialize in personal finance, weddings and gardening.