Bamboo Garden Trellis Tutorial

The garden peas and sweet peas have been planted, but they have nothing to grow on, and I best remedy this situation before their shoots emerge and reach for support.  Bamboo is one of my favorite materials for staking and building supports for vegetable plants, and visitors to my garden often ask me about my bamboo creations.  Its attractive, strong, and will last for a number of seasons when over-wintered correctly.  This bamboo garden trellis is a quick afternoon project that is sure to get noticed.

Supplies:

  • Bamboo poles
    • Qty. 2 – 1″ width cane – 8 ft. long
    • Qty. 4 – 5/8″ width cane – 6 ft. long
  • Zip Ties 8″ long
  • Twine and/or rope
  • Scissors
  • Tape Measure

Begin by cutting the 1″ bamboo into 4 segments measuring 48″ in length for the trellis legs.  Next, cut the 5/8″ bamboo into 12 segments measuring 22″ each for the cross sections.  When cutting the bamboo, you can use a handsaw or your favorite power tool of choice.  Just be sure to cut through the bamboo slowly because it has a nasty habit of splintering.

Lay out the first side panel by placing 2 of the 48″ poles parallel to one another, and laying 3 of the 22″ cross sections perpendicular to the legs.  The bottom cross-bar should be 12″ up from the bottom of the leg, the second cross-bar 18″ up from the bottom cross-bar, and the top cross-bar 1″ from the top of the leg.

Securely zip tie the cross-bars onto the legs using an ‘X’ pattern.  Repeat this process with the remaining 2 legs and 3 cross-bars.

Next, join the two panels together with the remaining 6 cross-bars.  This part can be tricky because its hard to hold the two panels up while trying to zip tie them together.  To make it easier, lean one of the panels against a wall or table to steady it.

Now that the trellis is together, tighten all the zip ties as much as possible, and turn the end pieces toward the center of the trellis.  Snip the left over ends as closely as possible to the zip tie catch.  The trellis will still feel wobbly and doesn’t look all that attractive, but we are going to fix that.

Cut a piece of twine, or rope, about 5 feet long.  At first, I tried using the twine, but it was going to take a crap load of twine to cover all those zip ties because it provides such thin coverage.  Off to the hardware store I went to get this 1/4″ sisal rope.  It gave me much better coverage and it’s also much stronger than the twine.

Using the rope, begin wrapping each joint, pulling tightly and covering the plastic zip ties.   Keep wrapping and pulling until you reach the end of your rope.  Tie it off with a granny knot, facing the inside of the trellis, and tuck the extra rope ends into the joint.

The trellis should feel much sturdier now, although it does still wiggle a bit.  Once it is staked into the garden, it will be firm and secure.  Time to grab a beverage of choice, scissors, twine, and a hammer and head to the garden.

Position the trellis and use a hammer to gently pound each leg into the garden soil about 6 – 8″.  Now that sucker won’t be going anywhere.

Grab the twine and pick a corner to begin at and tie it off.  String the twine in a ‘V’ formation around the bottom row, pulling firmly as you make your way around.  At the end, tie it off and repeat for the top row.

The bamboo garden trellis is complete and ready for some action.  This trellis is very sturdy and could be used for a number of different plants.  A tomato would look stellar growing inside and beans and cucumbers would also be quite happy.  What do you think?  Does this look easy enough to build for your own garden?

 

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