The trellis is a hallmark of a flourishing outdoor space. Evidence of trellis use dates back to well before the middle ages. Then, as now, trellises were used to add decorative allure and encourage upward plant growth. Let’s look at the options for this simple design that can add dimension to your yard or garden.
How A Trellis Works
Trellises are ideal for yards and garden spaces of any variety, but especially those where square footage is at a premium. A trellis serves as a vertical growing area, facilitating maximum flora coverage via latticework-style frame designs. Vining plants naturally cling to these. Trellises can also support fruiting plants by deterring insect pests and preventing ground contact. These elements cater perfectly to ornamental flowers and foliage, bolstering backyards and allowing you to make the most of your space, no matter its size.
Popular Trellis Styles
Garden trellis ideas are as varied as your home’s style. From traditional to contemporary, there are a wide variety of options to suit your taste and garden plan. As you consider each trellis design idea for your home, keep in mind the vertical space you’ll be filling and how it will fit into your overall outdoor space. Here’s a look at four of the most common trellis shapes:
Arched trellises evoke Victorian-era elegance with rounded tops and latticework foundations. This design can be found in both obelisk and panel styles, which allows for an array of versatile uses.
Planter box-style trellises pull double duty. Using a grow box as a base, these trellises afford you an extra plod to plant flowers alongside the vine plants you’ve chosen to showcase on the attached wall-panel trellis. This design is ideal for urban dwellers without a full-blown garden. Planter box-style trellises seem custom fit for patios and apartment balconies.
Fanned trellises are almost identical to arched trellises, aside from one crucial distinction. This style sports a flared top, resembling the soothing appeal of a Japanese fan. An easy way to add an element of visual serenity to your yard, these trellises are typically placed alongside a structure.
Obelisk trellises exude more drama than their panel-style counterparts. Their three-dimensional design comes in myriad shapes, though most typical are the column and pyramid styles.
Unlike panel-style trellises, obelisk trellises are overtly decorative. They tower above your space, proudly displaying greenery. Place them strategically within your yard or garden to enhance flow and aesthetic authority.
Trellises are available in three basic materials, each of which features construction that caters to outdoor use:
Natural and timeless, wood is an undisputed classic when it comes to trellis materials. Its rustic charm only increases with wear, giving your garden a lived-in warmth that’s difficult to attain with synthetic materials. Try a cedar or teak trellis for one with wood dense enough to withstand a dramatic range of environmental conditions. Before you make a decision about material, be sure to research your specific wood type as intermittent maintenance may be required to ensure long-lasting integrity.
Consider a vinyl trellis if your location is regularly subjected to severe weather conditions. Vinyl is a virtually indestructible material that won’t fade when exposed to intense sunlight or shatter when exposed to frigid temperatures. It’s versatile to the extremes. It’s also a cinch to clean. Just like the vinyl siding found on homes around the globe, vinyl sheds dirt and grime with a simple spritz of hose water.
Vinyl’s only downside comes when it’s compared to natural materials. Though it can be molded to resemble real wood, its simulation tends to fall short upon close inspection.
Metal is low-maintenance and nearly indestructible. This means it works stupendously in gardens and backyards of any variety. Often metal trellises feature a ladder-style design that can brilliantly offset a foliage-dense green space. Such style works well in conjunction with screen-style trellises, breaking up your area with complementary flair. Metal also weathers well. With time and exposure to the elements, most metals develop an earthy patina that exudes character and vitality.
Whether you’re looking to grow hardy roses or delicate vines, there’s a trellis that’s right for your garden ideas. When you’re shopping, keep our buying tips in mind as you select a trellis style and material. With the addition of a garden trellis, you’ll be able to expand your plant collection and create a beautiful garden area to enjoy.
Find More Ways to Accent the Garden:
- Complement your trellises with an arbor. Read our Garden Arbor Buying Guide for tips.
- Add a bridge over a water feature or as a beautiful accent. Check out the Garden Bridge Buying Guide.
- Our Garden Planter Buying Guide will help you choose the right pots to fill empty outdoor spaces with color.
- Try your hand at container gardening! Read Container Gardening Ideas & Expert Advice.