DIY – How to Build a Garden Trellis for Shade

A garden trellis is a beautiful addition to a garden that can be used to add shade and comfort to an existing area. Although it takes years for a trellis to become a beautiful covering of flowers, the first step is to build the trellis so that the flowers can begin to grow up and around it. A garden trellis is an inexpensive and simple way that you can add structure to your garden without taking away the aesthetic design of the garden itself.

Once the trellis plants have grown over the trellis, the garden trellis will provide shade and comfort to a sunny area of the yard. It is a good idea to build the trellis in an area that will be large enough to accommodate a table and chairs underneath so that you can enjoy the shade that the structure provides in the coming years. When built properly and with the right plants a garden trellis is a great addition to any garden lover’s oasis.

Items you Will Need:


Tape Measure


4×4 posts

post digger


Chalk Line


Wood Sealer

Step 1: Measure out your area with the measuring tape. If you would like the trellis to form a covering for an area of 10 feet by 10 feet on the ground then measure out that amount of space.

Step 2: For a 10×10 zone, you will begin by placing the 4×4 posts in the ground at all four corners of the measured area. Using the post digger set the posts into the ground at least 8 inches to assure that they will be sturdy with the weight of plants on them in the coming years.

Step 3: Place 2×4’s across the top from post to post in a horizontal pattern. Nail one 2×4 into the post on the left and the right and then follow this step with a second 2×4. These will hold the top of the lattice structure to create a roof.

Step 4: Begin nailing lattice along one side of the structure. Lattice will be nailed all the way up one side along the top and then back down the other side. There should be two open sides to the structure where there is not any lattice. Laying the lattice long ways will prevent it from needing middle support beams.

Step 5: Seal the entire structure with a wood sealer by applying the sealer according to manufacturer instructions. Allow the sealer to dry overnight before adding plants around the trellis.

Step 6: Add vining plants such as Jasmine, Grapes, or Ivy. Jasmine is a beautiful plant that flowers and smells wonderful during blooming season. Although the Jasmine will attract bees so if you will be sitting underneath the trellis you may not want to plant a trellis plant that will attract flying insects.

Plant the vining plants of your choice along the two sides of the structure that already contain the lattice. If the vines are long enough you may begin to tame them into the lattice, however if they are not long enough yet, you may tame them later on as they grow by stringing the vines into the lattice gently as they grow.

Step 7: Enjoy the new structure that you have built in your garden. A garden trellis can be enjoyed for years to come!

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