6 Unique & Unusual Garden Trellis Ideas


Are you looking to do something a little different in your garden this season? Feeling bored of the old, standard, classic garden trellis? 

Well, you’ve come to the right place, my friend. 

P.S. I don’t mean to throw any shade at the wonderful, classic garden trellis setup by the way — I simply want to help you broaden your options.

The possibilities are pretty much endless, but let’s start with my 6 favorites.

I’m getting increasingly eager to share this list with you, so let’s jump right into it.

6 Unique & Unusual Garden Trellis Ideas

  • Bicycle Wheel Trellis
  • Painter’s Easel
  • Window Frame
  • Leaning Wood Pallet
  • A Frame Trellis
  • Tepee (OR Tipi)

Bicycle Wheel Trellis

I was absolutely amazed when I first saw this in someone’s yard. It doesn’t get much more creative than a DIY garden trellis made from old bike tires!

There are a few different ways to go about this one.

Don’t throw out your old bicycle tires – even if they’re flat! You can upcycle your old bike wheels to turn them into a beautifully crafty DIY garden trellis!

3 Ways To Turn Bicycle Tires Into A Garden Trellis

  • 2 Tires With Connecting Jute
  • Vertical Plank With Tires Attached
  • Single Leaning Tire

Let’s start with the coolest-looking one (and the most clever, in my opinion).

2 Tires With Connecting Jute

If you find two old bicycle tires, you can lay one tire flat on the soil, attach a metal rod to the center of its rim, and attach the other tire to the other end of the metal rod. 

Once you’ve attached a bike wheel to each of the two ends of the rod, you’re already about halfway done.

Next, you’ll need to cut your jute, or twine. The strings you use to attach one bike tire to the other will be perfect for climbing vines and curling tendrils.

Generally, it’ll be a good idea to cut as many pieces of jute as there are spokes on a single bike tire rim. For example, if each bike tire has 28 spokes, you can easily attach 28 long pieces of string.

If your two bike tires don’t have the same number of spokes — no biggie! You can either cut as many pieces of twine as there are spokes on the wheel with fewer spokes, or you can get creative about where to attach a couple of extra pieces of string!

Just make sure to measure your jute twine before cutting it. You’ll want to make sure each piece is long enough to tie to both tires at either end.

& of course, you’ll want to do your best to tie each end of the jute next to the bike spoke on one tire that is directly parallel to to the bike spoke on the other tire. That way, your jute twine will run in a perfectly vertical direction. 

Your peas will thank you!

Vertical Plank With Tires Attached 

Of course, there are some other ways to turn old bike tires into a garden trellis.

You can attach short rods to flanges, and screw those into a plank of weather-treated lumber. Then, you can attach your bike tires. 

All you’ll need to do is make sure that you have as many rods (and flanges) as you do bike tires.

Oh, and you’ll want to lay/space out your bike tires over your wood plank in a way that makes sense before attaching the flanges, rods, and bike tires to your wood. 

You could use as few as one bike tire for this, or as many as will fit on the piece of wood you’ve got to work with!

If you decide to take the plunge and tackle this DIY project — you can then situate your long plank of wood so that it’s standing vertically right in front of where you’ve planted vegetables that climb!

Single Leaning Tire

Okay, I almost didn’t include this next bike wheel project because I know many of you readers would not consider this an actual “project” — but it’s pretty cool nonetheless!

I have seen people lean a single (large) bike tire or wagon wheel at an angle against a solid surface (like a fence) so that climbing (but low growing) vegetables (such as dwarf peas) still have a modest place to climb.

That’s it.

Pretty simple, right?

So right there — you have three potential bike tire garden trellis projects you can try! Again, my favorite is the first one with the jute twine, but to each his/her own!

Painter’s Easel

Do you have an old, unused painter’s easel lying around somewhere in your garage or attic?

Well, it would actually make a pretty awesome trellis. 

Some painter’s easels are a little more flimsy than others, so you’ll want to make sure that you’re planning accordingly and that you ultimately place your painter’s easel trellis in a spot that makes sense.

No need to toss your old, flimsy painter’s easels! After some sprucing up – they’ll make wonderfully unique garden trellises!

If your painter’s easel is not the sturdiest, it might be most suitable to use it indoors by your window or on your porch for plants that like to climb.

On the other hand, if you’re confident that your easel could withstand a bit of wind and rain, you could pull off a pretty cool outdoor trellis setup!

How artsy would that be?!

If using a painter’s easel for an outdoor trellis, you’ll first want to make sure that the material it’s made from is mold-and-mildew-resistant.

If your easel is made from a durable stainless steel, you probably don’t have much to worry about.

However, if it’s made from a porous, water-absorbing type of wood, you’ll want to weather treat that. 

For extra stability, dig some holes about 6 inches deep for the legs of your easel. You can also put some rocks or pebbles into the holes to help further secure the easel’s legs.

Art studio or Garden – there are multiple ways to get plenty of use out of your easels.

If you love the painter’s easel trellis idea, but you feel like you need a bit more design intricacy or grid-action —why not attach some extra horizontal pieces of wood going across the easel?

Your beans will love you for it!

Window Frame

I’ve seen this done before and I absolutely love it!

You can repurpose your old window frames and turn them into lovely garden trellises! 

When it’s time to swap out your old windows for some updated ones, you can upcycle your old window frames and use them for climbing plants in your garden!

Just make sure your window frames are glass-free (otherwise, it defeats the purpose of using them for your beloved climbing plants).

Don’t be afraid to get creative with this one!

While the classic, rectangular window frames will certainly look amazing — so will some odd-shaped and more complex ones!

The first thing that comes to mind for me is an antique, cathedral window frame!

Once you decide on the right frame, all you have to do is find a sturdy spot to lean your window frame.

Then, you’re ready to get planting!

Leaning Wood Pallet

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve seen people getting rid of their wood pallets. 

Little do they know — wood pallets make incredible makeshift garden trellises!

A leaning wood pallet makes a fantastic (and easy) garden trellis!

Similar to the other projects we discussed earlier, you’ll just want to make sure that your wood pallets are treated with a seal or weather-resistant coating so that the wood doesn’t rot or get moldy.

& just like with the repurposed window frames, you may simply lean your new wood pallet trellis diagonally against a strong surface that isn’t going anywhere (again, like a fence) and you’re ready rock!

P.S. If you’d like to find a little bit of added security (as far as knowing your DIY trellis won’t slip or fall onto your precious plants) there’s a way to do it!

You can secure two vertical wooden stakes deep into the soil, prop your wood pallet up vertically against the stakes, and then screw your wood pallet to the stakes.

Your cucumbers will be so happy!

A Frame Trellis

These seem to be becoming more and more popular on Pinterest, but we still don’t have one of these Bad Larries in our own family garden yet (but we want to)! So, that’s why it’s on the list!

I suppose in some ways you could consider the whole painter’s easel project an A-shape trellis — but that isn’t quite what I’m envisioning for this one.

This looks more like two tall grids leaning up against each other to form a peak at the top. 

These grids could be made of metal or wire, wood, or even jute. What’s important is that your plants have a whole playground of spots to climb over and around.

If you wanted this project to join forces with the window frame project, you could certainly lean two window frames together and secure them at the peak with plenty of jute twine. 

I’ll admit, I’ve never actually seen anyone make an A-shape trellis with two window frames, but I know for a fact it would work as long as you set it up securely on flat ground (and perhaps add a couple of rocks at the base for added stability.

Though, if you want to know what my all time favorite A Frame Trellis looks like, it’s this Oak A Frame Trellis from the yardnbarn Etsy shop:

The owner of the yardnbarn Etsy shop calls this lovely A Frame Trellis a “Plant Playground” — & we couldn’t agree more!

Tepee (OR Tipi)

One of my family members recently built a tepee in his garden out of pvc pipes.

It’s easily one of the coolest trellis setups I’ve ever seen. So, I highly recommend you give this one a try.

No need for tarps or coverings of any kind. All you need is a well-built frame.

While you can use stainless steel rods or PVC pipes, you may also go for a more natural, rustic look by using real wood or branches.

I often see backyard tepees with four legs (or branches), but you can also go for a tripod. Just keep in mind that more legs will often provide more stability.

For taller, wider tepees, you may want to use as many as a dozen sticks or branches! It’s really up to you. Just remember that sturdiness is the goal here.

You’ll want to make sure to use a super-strong rope when wrapping, tying and securing the top of your tepee.

This garden tepee (or tipi) is nice and secure at the top – perfect for climbing garden plants & just the way we like it!

& since we’re referring to garden trellis tepees here, you may even want to screw in some horizontal sticks to connect some of the legs. This will provide maximum climbability! 

Your tomatoes will have the climb of their lives!

Conclusion

Now that you know some unique and unusual ideas for your garden trellis set-up, you can continue to allow your mind —and your plants — to run wild!

I wish you a lifetime of bountiful harvests!

Happy planting!


I hope you enjoyed this guest post by LMadGz 

You can read all about our Rustic Garden Arbor Ideas here.

You may also enjoy this post with our Vertical Herb Gardening Ideas.

If you’d like, you can also read some of my most popular posts here. Enjoy!

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