A Family Garden Trellis Project


While visiting our local arboretum we came across gourd trellises that were made from saw horses. Dan and I both thought these were a great, cheap little garden idea. Part of our yard was planted with fall gourds and they were beginning to take over so I headed to Home Depot to rummage through the scrap bin for as many 2x4's as I could find (they are 85% in the scrap bin) and we were on our way. Want to learn how to make one?

Note the little hands assisting in the project. They did most of the work, so you really can do this.


  • A set of sawhorse brackets.
  • Screweyes
  • 32' of 2X4's (our dimensions were 6'Hx8'W)
  • Twine or a trellis netting
  • 2-8' 1x1's for the bottom support


    1. Measure out the 4 legs to 6' and mark. (we opted for 6' so it is tall enough for the girls to climb in and my scrap wood was 12' long, make it as tall as you like)


    2. Cut the 4 legs to desired length.


    3. Add one bracket to each end of the 8' 2X4 and then slide legs into slots.


    4. Set-up like a swingset.


    5. Screw deck screws into brackets to stabalize.


    6. Lay 1x1 pieces along bottom or a few inches up from ground. Screw into the legs.



    7. Measure from end every 12" and mark for the screweyes. We marked the header piece and the 2-1x1 pieces, then the 4 legs from top edge down.


    8. Drill small pilot hole for the screweyes and screw them in. Annie used the pliers and the old twisting the screwdriver trick.


    9. Begin to string. I left the roll of twine on the ground and pulled the other end through the eyes, cutting and tying off the spool side last.


    10. Run the twine from bottom to top and then from side to side to make a grid.


    Here is the finished trellis just with the gourds starting to grow on them. The other side may need some sugar snap peas and I think we'll put it up a bit earlier next year. It cost us less than $20 to build and only took an hour or so, with the girls helping. Hope this little tutorial helped. Thanks to the Morton Arboretum for such a great idea. And to Annie and Maddie and Dan for being such good workers.


    oonsky said...

    You and your family are amazing!

    Anonymous said...

    I remember seeing these and saying I wanted to do this at home! Now that I know it is easy to do, I think we may give it a shot! (I may hire Annie and Maddie) Yours looks great!

    ALF said...

    What fun projects you do at your house...I want to come over!

    Monster Librarian said...

    Thanks for sharing this...I know what my project will be next summer in the garden! Cheers!

    Anonymous said...

    I can imagine this would be a great summer fort if it was grown with snap peas. It would be a great play spot for the kids and a nice place to munch on fresh little green Pea Pods. My morning glories would love it too, as they seem to be able to reach 12 feet tail most summers. Makes me want to be a kid again with a pillow and a good book!!

    Karen said...

    That's a great idea! I'll have to do that next year because our gourds are taking over as well.

    Anonymous said...

    This is great! All of us at the Morton Arboretum Children's Garden wish you many hours of happy gardening.

    E said...

    What a very great idea!!! This maybe the perfect way to create privacy betwee my yard and my neighbors!! Thanks!

    Tony Destroni said...

    great ! i hope you have a post about wind spinner or other garden and home accessories , im interested on this i hope you can help me . thank you!