Working in your garden is an incredibly rewarding endeavor that requires problem-solving. For example, what do you do when you need to provide supplemental support for your plants? Depending on your needs, creating a trellis can support your cherries, tomatoes, or, more traditionally, your grapes. But what is a trellis, what are its benefits, and what ideas will help you construct this structure in interesting ways? We’ve got you covered. Check out some useful structural ideas for supporting grapevines in your garden, along with general helpful information about trellises and their benefits.
What Is a Grapevine Trellis?
A trellis is just a framework of horizontal and vertical parts that supports a grapevine or any other vegetable vine. It helps train plants like small or young trees, shrubs, or vines to grow against and up the trellis’s flat and holey surface. You can use a trellis in many ways, including as a privacy screen or an accent piece. Luckily, there are a ton of different trellis structures that you can make, both complex and relatively simple. But before you decide on a style, learning the benefits of using trellises will be helpful in gauging the best trellis for your needs.
What Are the Benefits?
Grapevine trellises help your grapevines grow naturally in the open air. Since grapes will generally climb and mold to whatever support they have, trellises are perfect for growth. If you trellis your crop appropriately, you’ll find that your yield is massive since the grapes have more space to grow and more exposure to direct light. You also give them something to latch onto for support, making their buds swell in ways that aren’t possible without a trellis.
A trellis can also control the spread of diseases and pests. Did you know that grapevines are more likely to get fungal diseases without proper airflow? These diseases can completely ruin your vines that are in damp, stagnant conditions. Because of this, the improved airflow the trellis provides can mitigate the chance that diseases will ravish your vines.
Additionally, given how much light grapes need to flower, it’s wise to put them in direct sunlight rather than shady environments. Photosynthesis contributes to the production of sugars at high rates, giving you a high-quality yield every time. Given the ease with which you can manage your canopies and prune and align your trellis, you can easily provide sunlight to your crop.
Finally, the trellis makes harvesting much easier. Grapevines climb naturally, so you don’t need to do anything extra when you have a trellis. If you leave them to their own devices, you’ll find that they’re far more likely to grow into big juicy buds. They intuitively curl and twist around whatever they come across, so you don’t need to do much.
How Do You Make Standard Trellis Structures?
Making your trellis is relatively simple and a process that pays dividends. There are a couple of ways to make one depending on if you want it to be vertical or horizontal.
A horizontal system attaches to a post 4 feet above the ground, typically as trunk support. Then, the wires are attached on a horizontal plane about 5 feet long and secured to posts 2 meters off the ground.
The vertical system is about 3 feet above the ground and uses two wires. This is perfect for circulating air among the vines. Use steel, aluminum, or wood to make a vertical trellis system, but keep in mind that the wood will likely degrade over time. You should get a post that’s 7 to 10 feet tall. You’ll likely need three of them. You should also use a nine-gauge aluminum wire. You can twist it using manual hog ring tools and any other tools you might need. You’ll use a hammer to pound the pole into the ground at about 6 inches and directly behind the vine. Leave about 2 inches of space between the vine and the pole. A hole digger might help here, but a hammer will do just fine. Fill the hole with fine gravel and soil to help support it. Then, repeat the process for the other post. After that, measure the posts up to 3 feet and drive two screws up each post on both sides. Wrap the galvanized wire around said screws. The twine should be long enough to accommodate a few rows of vines.
Additional Structural Ideas
We provided a basic idea for how to create a standard trellis structure. However, there are more elaborate structural ideas for supporting grapevines in your garden to get fancy. If you choose any of the ideas below, you’ll be well on your way to having a beautiful set of vines for you and your guests to enjoy.
Trellis and a Bench
Trellises aren’t just functional; you can use them for aesthetic reasons. If you enjoy the look and feel of grapevines, you can create a bench that takes advantage of the shade fully grown grapevines provide with their tightly knitted structures. This is another option if you have a low budget and can’t exactly build a trellis castle. If you want something simple but attractive, you must try it out. This is also good for a beginner looking to spruce up their garden.
If function is your sole objective, adding and creating a space useful for growing grapes might be wise. In that case, a canopy of low-hanging trellises might help your grapevines grow to fruition. It’s not exactly a forerunner for the most beautiful structure, but it is a fully functional horizontal piece that will help grow your yield to epic proportions.
Have you ever seen an idyllic trellis corridor? There’s nothing more romantic than walking down what essentially amounts to an outdoor hallway of flowers and vines. Keep in mind that grapes go bad if you don’t pick them, and a trellis corridor can make it difficult to access every ripe grape. Nevertheless, a corridor is an aesthetic, romantic trellis structure you will love in your garden.
If you’re interested in buying DIY tools for your needs, we have them here at Staple Headquarters. Browse our website or contact us to learn how we can supply you with all your trellis-building tools.