A trellis is a structure which can be made of wood, bamboo or even metal. It is a framework of interwoven/intersecting pieces which is usually made to support (and also display) plants that climb, i.e. vines, climbing roses, ivy etc.
The main use of a trellis is to support our plants, and many of these can climb and curl themselves around a trellis without much interference from us; however, some plants have to be trained by threading the growing shoots through the trellis and tying them into position.
However, another important part of their use is to make the garden look smart and tidy, and as well the trellis can help screen your garden, thus giving you a bit of privacy when relaxing in the garden in the summer.
Trellis panels are often used to give height to a panel fence. A trellis can also be used as a lightweight fence in its own right. Semi-solid trellises make an excellent screen for rubbish bins or a compost heap. As a trellis is lightweight and when used only for screening purposes, it can simply be attached to 3 inch wooden posts and secured to the ground using spiked posts making a considerable saving on labour costs.
At Stephen Charles Landscapes (unlike most people in our profession), we make our own trellises, arches, obelisks, and tunnels. These are of a much higher quality than the ones that can be purchased at garden centres, etc. which tend to fall apart easily. Our trellises are made with thicker wood and they last much longer than shop-bought ones. And because they are made-to-measure for each project, they can be designed and handmade to the exact height and length required to fit precisely where they are to be installed. They are either produced at our premises or on site (where access may be restricted). We principally use 3 types of timber:
Softwood such as pine
Cedar which is halfway between a hard wood and a soft wood
Hard woods such as Iroko
There are many different types of trellis – various sizes, shapes and styles. Selecting the correct one will enhance the design of your garden and give the correct support for your plants. If you are considering adding a trellis to your garden this year, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 020 3897 8422 and we would be delighted to give you some advice and even a free, no-obligation quotation should you wish.
Written by Leslie Chetland
1st April 2019
Updated 27th July 2020