Trellis Project

I have some vines on the west side of my house that I really want to have climb the wall there to help keep the house a little cooler in the summer. In past years it has been hit or miss as to whether I can get the vines to do a good job climbing the brick wall. I’ve known I need a trellis but I keep putting it off.

Yesterday I started working on the smaller of two trellises I need to make before my vines are in full swing this summer. I cut down a bunch of 2×6’s into 1-1/2″ stock from which to build the trellis:


At first I was a bit put off by the size of 1-1/2″ called for by the plans I’m roughly using, but after looking at it for a while I think it will be fine. It will definitely be sturdier than 3/4″ that I was originally going to use.

I used a 1/4″ round over bit in my router to smooth the edges of the stock after I cut it. Easy enough for the 4″ cross members but I needed to figure out a way to get 10′ posts thru the router. I came up with using a fence and afeather board and 2 out feeds behind the router to take up the post. This wasn’t perfect, but good enough for a trellis:


The cross members need 1/2″ notches cut in them to go over the posts. My table saw instructions say not to try to use a dado blade on it, so I dropped the riving knife, set the blade height to 1/2″ and cut both sides of each notch. Then I made another couple of cuts thru the notches. That allowed me to easily chisel out the notches. Not precise, but good enough for this project.

It was a long afternoon and evening, but all of the stock is ready to be stained and assembled.

Jun 5 update:

Staining and assembly went without any problems. Mounting it on the house was slightly challenging.  I mounted a wood spacer block into the brick near the top and then screwed the trellis into the spacer block. At the base I used 6″ nails to hold a pressure treated 2×4 in place and then some brackets to attach the trellis to the 2×4.


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One Response to Trellis Project

  1. Sean Straw says:

    You won’t have as much of a rot potential with the brick, but when I mounted trellises across the top of my garage face (so vines growing on either side could cross above the garage door), I didn’t want to deal with the potential for rot, so I cut short pieces (1″, whatever) of suitable dimension PVC pipe and screwed the trellis through that and into the wood of my siding — this way, the trellis wasn’t in direct contact with the siding, and there were only a few points of contact instead of a long bar of wood on which debris or moisture could accumulate.

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