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Garden Plants that Require a Trellis

To properly plan for a healthy, well-supported garden, make a list of the garden plants that require a trellis that you expect to grow this year.

Most plants do not require any kind of support. Cabbage, okra, peppers, corn, and greens all grow happily without additional provision. There are some crops, however, that must be supported because of their vining habit.

Plants that Require Extra Support

Pole Beans and Peas

These cool weather vines can grow from 3 to 8 feet long, depending on the variety, so they love vertical structures. A cattle panel trellis makes an excellent bean trellis, especially if you are interested in growing long beans. Many people also make a simple string trellis. Bush varieties do not require support.


These vines don’t grow quite as tall as beans, so there are more support options available. My favorite, simple cucumber supports are tomato cages. The shape of the cage allows plenty of greenery to grow along the top, protecting the fruit hanging in the interior from the harsh sun. This Deluxe Cucumber Cage from Gardener's Supply offers just the right amount of support. The cattle panel trellis will work, as well as any sturdy fence. Do you share a chain-link fence with your neighbor? Ask them if you can plant some cucumbers. Of course you’ll need to be willing to share some of the harvest.

Winter Squash

If you have plenty of space for these vines to spread, winter squash can be grown on the ground. If space is limited, the cattle panel trellis is the best option for winter squash (acorn, spaghetti, and butternut varieties just to name a few). The large, yellow blooms on winter squash make this a functional, but stunning addition to the garden. In a tight space, this Lean-To Trellis offers a great way to grow winter squash in a small garden.


To grow indeterminate tomatoes in the south, you need a heavy-duty cage. Concrete remesh cages are perfect for growing tomatoes and last forever. (I will be making and selling nesting sets of cages in the Spring. If you are local to Northwest Arkansas and interested in purchasing some cages, email me.)

Prepare for your garden plants that require a trellis before it is time for spring planting. The last thing you want is to be scrambling around at the last minute. This is also the time to think about how you are going to protect those tiny seedlings when they are transplanted. If you have dogs, a small fence might be necessary to keep them from getting trampled. Construct a simple fence out of wood stakes and chicken wire for a frugal barrier to keep out dogs as well as rabbits. If you have a problem with cats or squirrels digging, surround the base of your plant with sweet gumballs. The prickly corners make the garden an unpleasant place to dig and they will move on.

What is the "must have" vine you grow in your garden?



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