Make a Simple Bean Trellis for Your Garden

Photo by Bob Farley

Lately, I have been interested in workplace gardens. They are popping up all over Birmingham. Organic ideas grow in these gardens along with bounties of flowers, fruits and vegetables. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every business had a garden? Whether a vegetable garden, herb garden or decorative garden, just having a quiet respite away from the hustle and bustle of the office, for employees to taste a strawberry or to pop a tomato into their mouth during a little break in the middle of the day, would be a great reward.

On a recent visit to a fabulous workplace garden at Stewart Perry Construction, I learned of a new gardening company in town. If owners Mat and Kat of Magic City Gardening had their way, every home and business would have a garden.

A great thing about visiting gardens is that I always come home with an idea to implement. One thing that stood out during the visit to the Stewart Perry campus garden was the bean trellis made of bamboo and twine. I paid a visit to the gardeners’ own garden to further investigate how to make one for myself.

Photo by Bob Farley



Step 1

 Open Gallery

Photo by Bob Farley

Your bean trellis will be built on a base of three tripods staked in a straight line approximately 9 feet long. In the middle of the line (about 4 1/2 feet in from each end), sink three of the 6-foot poles into the ground (approximately 1 1/2-feet apart in a triangle) making the first tripod. (Make sure the legs are oriented so that they do not block the line of twine applied in Step 3.) Lash the top of the tripod, wrapping and crossing several times, with twine to secure. (It’s much easier to stake then lash, not the other way around.) Tie off the lash tightly. Repeat with the two end tripods using the other base poles. Do your best to line the tripods up straight on your center line.

Step 2

 Open Gallery

Photo by Bob Farley

Rest the 10-foot top rail on the cross of the three tripods and lash tightly into place on top of each tripod.

Step 3

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Photo by Bob Farley

Tie a line of twine at the base of a pole on one end of the structure. Tie the twine approximately 5 inches above the ground. Run the twine to the pole at the opposite end of the structure, and tie it off, again 5 inches above the ground. You’ll need a length of twine 10 to 11 feet long for this, but I just tie off one end of the ball of twine and then run it to the other end until I have what I need, then cut it off.

Step 4

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Photo by Bob Farley

Starting at one end, tie the end of the ball of twine to the pole at the same spot where the bottom line is tied, 5 inches above the ground. Run the ball of twine up to the top-rail pole, loop over, and run back down to loop around the bottom twine line. Repeat this action to zigzag weave the twine up and down until you reach the other end. Before you tie off, you may want to make adjustments in case it is too tight or too loose in some spots. Feel free to make the proper adjustments back down the length of the trellis. Tie the end securely to the opposite outer tripod pole at the same spot where the bottom line is tied off.

Step 5

 Open Gallery

Photo by Bob Farley

Start training the beans to grow up the trellis!


  • 9 6-foot poles (bamboo or tree branch)
  • 1 10-foot pole (bamboo or tree branch)
  • ball of sisal twine


  • clippers
  • scissors
About Michelle Reynolds 


I’m a slipcover maker who refuses to fill the trash with the cutaway bits of designer fabrics, so I strive to make use of every scrap. I live with my ...

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9 Responses

  1. Patricia says:

    This will only work in a well sheltered spot. Here in NM we can get sudden wind storms of up to 50 mph out of nowhere. We must use 8ft metal stakes and wire fencing. We even had to do that in Indiananapolis.

  2. Lar says:

    Problem with fresh stakes is they will sprout! Suddenly you will have thick roots invading your veggies you can't eliminate without pulling up your beans or peas and a jungle of new leaf growth from the stakes. So be sure the willow or bamboo are thoroughly dried. I'm trying boiling water on some I just cut and want to use immediately. We'll see if works

  3. Tony_Preston says:

    I'm loving the rustic look of this garden trellis! It looks really simple to construct too and would probably be a great alternative for folk who don't have the budget for a wooden or metal grill to put in the garden. No point penalising the poor vines and creepers right? Haha!

  4. Kristen says:

    This is awesome! I made a makeshift T trellis the other day for my melons to run across after inspiration from some awesome Indian gardening blogs. They have the best organic gardening tips and advice for using simple supplies to create any type of trellis or other garden needs yourself!

    I will totally do this next year when I do things a big more organized by putting all of my runners together on one side of the garden haha. That's what happens when you go to the garden center and get last minute, end-of-season plants, you've got to find a place for them!

  5. Before you tie off, you may want to make adjustments in case it is too tight or too loose in some spots.

  6. Just plant a bit extra for the little creatures of the Earth, as they are hungry, too. Traditionally, farmers always planted with the idea in mind that animals would eat some of their crops. In this way, we live in harmony with the Earth and we don't use harmful pesticides or chemicals to hurt the flora or fauna.

  7. Sheri Roland says:

    Moving to a community that has bunny rabbits. Never had to contend with these little critters. Will they eat my entire vege garden? Will I have to fence it in. Hate to sound so challenged, but I'm so looking forward to growing a kitchen garden.

    • Phyllis Roberson says:

      Just went to Walmart and purchased Liquid Fence Deer and Rabbit Repellent as I also have a problem with both. Just spray around garden and on flowering plants and one month so far having good luck.

    • Barbara says:

      have rabbits in my yard all the time and they never eat too much out of the garden. it is worth the little bit they eat to see them in the yard.

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