Garden vines will grow more efficiently and produce superior vegetables if they are grown using a trellis system for support. A trellis helps to keep vines off of the ground and allows air to circulate around them. This reduces the chance that the plants will become infected with mold or mildew and improves pollination by insects such as bees. Lightweight vine plants such as beans will grow well if given a lightweight trellis. You can build an inexpensive lightweight trellis using PVC pipe.
Things You’ll Need
- Garden hose
- Measuring tape
- 3 lengths ¾-inch PVC pipe, 12 feet long
- Posthole digger
- 2 PVC pipe elbows
- PVC glue
Building the Trellis
- Lay out a garden hose the length of your bean row.
- Measure a point 12 feet from the end of the garden hose. Dig a 3-foot hole into the soil at this point. Place the end of a 12-foot piece of PVC pipe into the hole. Fill in the hole with soil so that the pipe stands perpendicular to the ground.
- Dig another hole and sink a second 12-foot-long PVC pipe into the ground at the end of the garden hose.
- Place a pipe elbow into the top of each of your two PVC pipe posts. Connect the two elbows by placing the third piece of pipe horizontally in their open ends.
- Trace around the PVC pipe at the edges of the elbows. Remove the pipe and roughen the surface of the pipe behind the markings with sandpaper. Roughen the insides of the elbows with sandpaper.
- Smear PVC glue over the ends of the pipe behind the marker and in the interior of the elbows. Fit the pipe into the elbows and allow the glue to dry. The pipe trellis should now resemble a large upright square.
- Stretch a length of twine (string A) between the two posts at a point 1 foot from the ground. Tie this twine tightly, but do not bend the posts.
- Tie the end of a roll of twine to string A near one post. Wrap the ball of twine over the top bar and under string A. Zigzag this string across the trellis from one end to the other. Tie the end of the twine onto string A near the base of the trellis at the other end.
- Plant bean seeds, or seeds for another lightweight climbing plant, beneath the trellis. As they grow, the vines will climb the trellis.