How to Construct Trellises


A trellis can come in many shapes and sizes for a garden or landscape (lattice or fan are popular ones), and is used for several reasons, such as expanding smaller gardening space or adding an architectural element. Ultimately, they provide a practical use of supporting flowering vines, vegetable or fruit plants. Lattice trellises are some of the most popular, since they can be built as large as desired and can even create a privacy wall for a household. Although you can vary the size of your trellis to anything from 7 feet tall in large backyards to 3 feet tall on small apartment patios, a common size is 4 by 4 1/2 feet.

Step 1

Line up the four wooden boards that are 2 inches by 4 1/2 feet, making the edges even on the ground. Use the measuring tape to space them apart about 5 inches.

Step 2

Measure 5 inches down from the top of these boards that are lined up evenly, spaced 5 inches apart. Begin to lay out the second set of boards that are 2 inches by 4 feet on top of the first set, perpendicular.

Step 3

Measure down 5 inches from this first board you set down on top, then lay down the second board in this set in the same manner. Continue with this method, measuring 5 inches down until you run out of boards or come to the end of the first set. Make sure all the second set's edges are lined up straight on all sides. Upon completion, it will resemble a lattice pattern, kind of like a tic-tac-toe board.

Step 4

Secure all the boards together with the hammer and nails, right at each cross-section. Ideally, pound one nail through each top board so it reaches into the bottom board so they are conjoined.

Step 5

Pick up the trellis once you've nailed the front set and flip it around, setting it back on the ground. Repeat the procedure on this side now, securing each cross-section with a second nail that goes right next to the first. Shake the trellis lightly to make sure it is held securely together before hanging up on any wall.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure
  • 4 planks of wood, 2 inches by 4 feet
  • 4 planks of wood, 2 inches by 4 1/2 feet
  • Hammer
  • 2-inch nails
  • Electric screwdriver


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Keywords: building a trellis, constructing a garden trellis, about trellises

About this Author

Lauren Wise is a journalism major from Arizona State University with over forty published magazine and media articles and over 400 Web site articles. Wise owns Midnight Publishing with over eight years experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food and wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in magazines including Runway, A2Z, Scottsdale Luxury Living and True West.