My hillbilly trellis, anyone else add your trellises

tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)March 12, 2009

It's almost tomato ('mater) season here, I thought I'd share this bohemian trellis I threw together one day (literally, obviously) in '06 for my tomatoes, cucumbers, and mini gourds to climb on. Kept it for a couple of seasons, then tore down.

I dragged the cane off the neighbor's curb, who had put it there for city brush pick up. These photos don't show all the doo-dads that got added to it, but before long, I had quite a lot of different suncatchers, and metal items hung on it. The pink mandivillas on either side climbed up and over the top, and there was a clematis in the center corner, but I don't have any more photos of it that I can find.

I know, it was crude, but I enjoyed it anyways. I have been watching for the neighbor to cut some more cane this spring, and I hope to make some better trellises in panels that I would attach or remove to/from the deck rails, rather than just building directly onto the rails. That way they could be made much prettier (I could reach the top safely, my deck is about 30ft off the ground in that corner), then I could take the cane panels into basement for winter storage and they would last longer.

Anyone else make trellises? I just love using any materials available for them, including a brass headboard and footboard, a room divider, and other things. Don't be shy, I know everyone's trellis would look better than this, point is, I had a day of great fun building it! ~tenderlee

In the 2nd pic the tomatoes had actually filled out. I still grow cukes, gourds, and peppers here, but I had to quit fighting the losing battle with the squirrels! They would even eat green tomatoes right on the vine! Even after spending $40 on garden netting, they still got to them. So squirrels are not my friends now! LOL ... they're still cute though, but they dig in all my potted plants, and eat so many of my garden veggies! And they love to eat the mandivilla blossoms right before they open! ERRRR!

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You my dear are an amazing cane trellis builder. I'd be knocking on "neighbors" door offering cane cutting services. Ha

Since you can grow a blasted tomatoe (I always kill them???) then we should do everything to come up with a squirrel baffler. Make a square trellis like a small room, out of whatever material you choose. Line the interior with chicken wire that also covers the top. Put your pots inside of it. Of course one side of it would need to open up so you can go in and harvest your stuff. Use zip ties to anchor it to your deck rail for the summer.

My family members in Alabama (both male and female) would probably just shoot squirrels out of the trees from the balcony. So you can see how the trellis room could be a better compromise. Maybe you could find a place to plant them some corn down on the ground. You can harvest the stalks in the Fall for decoration. Susie

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 10:38AM
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I just love your trellis! Now I wish that we had canes like that growing aroudn here so I could make me some beautiful trellis like that! I love the bottles on the tops too! The way you have the pots arranged makes a beautiful privacy corner. What are the pots raised up on?

Ok, this one I'm not sure how many times I've showed this. I tried but with my climate it was hard with a drip system and the constant influx of ants. Strawberry apartment

And then here's the one I made to bring a vertical element to my yard.

Love, Jules

Here is a link that might be useful: Morning Glory Umbrella Trellis

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 12:26PM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

I think the trellis is beautiful, exactly as pictured, especially with the bottles on top. Looks like you have a very good view from your deck too.
I would like to make more permanent trellises, and I can see now that they have to have bottles on them!

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 12:31PM
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Bohemian here,

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 4:49PM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

Strawberry goat I like yours a lot too. When I've tried to makd them with little nails, they fall apart. What am I doing wrong?
Jules, great morning glory trellis! Is it a beach umbrella?

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:19PM
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I'm still worried about the squirrels. Does anyone have some more ideas to help Ms Tenderlee protect those plants from the little tomatoe eaters???

I would give anything for a Tennessee Home Grown Tomatoe. Or fried green tomatoes. That is why I panicked about the squirrels. Susie

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:29PM
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Marlene Kindred

I love your trellis! And I love all the dodads on it too! Who says you can't dress up a trellis? Squirrels,eh? I've not had trouble with them...I think my cats probably keep them away. The terapines like them though, but I share with them cause they're cool! ;-)

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:44PM
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Ok so I was thinking about your issue with squirrels. Encasing your patio with chicken wire is one. There is also a product made called Shake Away. Basically it uses critter 'scents" (urine) in it to deter those pesky lil critters. Also this website sells items like pop-up nets to cover over the area. Maybe even if you get one of those outdoor room tents that has the mesh all over it. I guess you would have to make sure there was no openeings on the bottom. I've been amused by the stories about squirrel baffels in Birds and Blooms or Backyard Living magazines. But the source they are hungry for is in a specific place that's smaller than your pottted veggies. When you go to the link just type in shake away or pop up tents in search and it will bring them up. Let me know what you end up doing. I've grown tomatoes in the past and the only predator that I've had to tango with is the green horned tomatoe-tobacco worm!Hate those things! Hope this helps.

CCPR (Kathy),

Ok, so the umbrella is the skeleton of a patio umbrella. It was my Moms and she wanted to get rid of it. All I did was haul it home, strip the decaying fabrics off and mounted it to a PVC pipe bracketed to that raised bed. The umbrella post slips down into the PVC. I also attached those plastic tree bark protectors up the pole so climbing plants would attach much more readily. Teh blue umbrella you see next to it was one I put out there to protect me in the sun while gardening. I forgot to take it in after that and just left it there.....Anyways, I have another umbrella skleton that I need to "plant" out there this year.

Love, Jules

Here is a link that might be useful: Gardeners Supply company

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 12:51AM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

SusieRose, thanks for your thoughts on the squirrel problem, mine are along the same line as yours, chicken wire is the only thing I can think of that will let enough sunlight in, and keep the little pesty squirrels out. Since tomatoes do much better in the regular garden soil (container tomatoes are tricky!) the best thing would be to plant a bed down in hilly backyard (photo of veggie bed at end of post), and build wire cages on a wood frame. Getting them built would be the biggest thing, hubby doesn't do much of anything anymore due to health problems.

Having a carpenter come over next month to build a gate door on our front deck (to keep those GKs in hopefully!) and I'll talk to him about what he could do for me. Something like a chicken coop, but it would be a 'mater coop, with a door for harvesting, etc. I agree about how good those homegrown tomatoes are! I can as much of them as possible each year, and use them for soups, spaghetti sauce, salsa, etc. and they taste so much better than any store bought. I always use every jar before the next season!

As for the squirrels digging in all my container plants, the best way I've been able to combat that is to use rocks, shells, or other thick mulch in the pots, and they move onto real dirt in the yard.

Jules, I love how the strawberry apt looked! Great idea, too bad about the ants. The blueish blossoms on that morning glory make the spot seem cool and comfy, I love how you recycled that old umbrella frame, it looks great and didn't end up in the landfill!

Marlene, we don't have any cats, but I figured they would be a deterrent to the squirrels if any resided here, in fact our little dog, to the far left in the 2nd pic, now resides at our son's house because she was too nervous and snappy with the GKs, so no pets here at all now. You must live near water with the terrapins, how cool are they!?!! Very Neat!

Kathy, so glad you like it, was definitely unplanned and freestyle, but a lot of fun. Hope to visit a place about 50 miles from here where my sister in law knows someone with some very large cane near a river. Biggest problem is that we don't own a truck, but my best friend does :-) The art doodads really grew in quantity and I wish I had a pic of how it looked after I had added lots more GJ art to it. Each bamboo top ended up with glass on top, an African mask, a wire guitar player & other goodies were added to the grid.

Last but certainly not least, my bohemian friend StrawberryGoat, your trellis is the most adorable, sweet, pretty little thing I've ever seen! You arranged the pieces so artfully, and that clematis vine is perfect! What kind of wood did you use? Did you weave the pieces together, or use nails or screws? Love the curved wood, it adds so much interest to the piece. If it's like cane, it's best to work when still green. It is The Bomb!!!!!

SusieRose, here's the garden spot where I need the 'mater coop, it barely gets enough sun since yard is so shaded, but it's the most sunny spot.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 10:21AM
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A light sprinkle of Bloodmeal on top of soil in pots will keep them away. TOO much will burn plants tho'-

Squirrels pulled newly planted flowers from my windowboxes 2-3 times a day until someone told me the lil' rascals hated the smell of bloodmeal.


    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 1:37PM
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jitterbug4756(zone 8)

I dont have any pics of my trellis' ;[ but my boyfriend made some similar, not as fancy with the curves, as strawberrygoats.I praised him so much for the first one, he got right back out there and built me more... yay. We love coming up with new stuff for the yard by reusing other stuff..also can save bunches that way. About the squirells...we have an awful time with them here,and there a a BUNCH of them, digging up bulbs, robbing tomatoes ..everything,Also tearing up and raiding all our birdfeeders. I read last year a tip from Paul James, the gardening guy, to mix a tablespoon or two of cayenne pepper with the birdseed before you fill the feeders up.He said the audebon society said it wouldnt affect the birds. i put our seed in one of those plastic bags from the grocerys store add the seed about 1/2 way and add about 3 tbs cayenne and shake it up, then fill the feeders.The first afternoon we did this we only had to wait about 5 minutes til the first one climbed the feeder,took one bite and jumped down off the feeder and ran to the nearest oak. few minutes later another one climbed down near another feeder, same thing. we laughed all evening as we watched squirells going all over the yard and running away.Few days later i said hummm...and sprinkled some around my tomatoes, which I also grown in large containers. I made a circle about a foot outside the containers... maybe cos theyd already tasted/smelled it in the birdseed . kept my tomatoes for about a week until a durn deer reached its head inside the cage and ate my 'maters and the plant down as far as it could reach. also my bell pepper plants.Well could of been rabbits got the pepper plants, cos they ate all my sweet potatoe vine back. thanks for the bloodmeal tip. Im new to this website and have fallen in love with all the forums

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 3:21PM
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Welcome Jitterbug!! My friend asked me to come over & get some zucchini few summers ago! I was really surprised! They had a cage I guess you would call it. 7 ft tall about 20 ft long & 12 ft wide. Just 2x4 framing I think in redwood & with chickenwire stapled on the whole thing & over the top. I asked why & she said they got sick of birds, squirrels ,coons & cats & since they almost "lived" off of their garden they wanted it clean. They had compost pile in corner & fruit trees with grapefruit & oranges otherwise just grass. Very neat & lots of fruits, Oh, the zucchini was around the bottom of fruit trees which I thought was odd but they don't like being too wet she also stuck in some bachlor buttons- reminded me of early 1900's way she did things, but it worked. She also made all their bread!! Your 'box' could be shorter at top & taller at bottom & enclose area with chickenwire,they stapled top on across the 12ft. pieces & at edges put together with those rings like a wire rabbit cage is put together. There were steel poles in couple of places under the across the top pieces so the 12 ft 2x4 wouldn't sag I think at halfway point. Door was 1x2 wood frame covered with chickenwire. She's passed on so can't get a pic. Imagine new owners tore it down. Jan

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 1:52AM
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My trellis' are bedsprings! They have been up a number of years now, and work great!

If you haven't been to my website and seen them, look now.


    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 9:34AM
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    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 9:36AM
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I love that! Very organic and fun!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 9:54AM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

Oh and Susie ... don't think that shooting them doesn't cross my mind also, but #1 I don't know how to shoot a gun and #2 I live in the city limits and don't want to go to jail, but sometimes I wish I could just go "Granny Clampett" on them LOL! I just have to find ways of diverting their attention instead.

Jules, those pots are sitting on plastic soft drink flats. I had a friend in vending and he gave me a bunch of them. Helps protect the deck wood from having wet planters directly on them constantly. I have a few other plastic cases that are approx 1' x 1' and work great to hold large plants, and I can stack 2 or them if needed. I'm not crazy about plastic, prefer natural materials, but they're in black, so they blend in pretty well.

Grittymitts/Suzi - Good to see you and thanks for the bloodmeal tip, gonna pick some up for sure and try it!

Jitterbug - Good to see you too, loved the story of the cayenne and the squirrels, I bet that really was funny! Post a pic of that trellis if you can. Thankfully I don't have any deer problems, that would drive me nuts, fighting with Bambi! Oh and , I've confessed to the other GJers that I'm a Paul James junkie! His show is the best on HGTV, and they don't run it enough! Now their shows are mostly hunk and hunkettes decorating LOL ... I guess I'm really getting old! hehe But I would like to see more real gardening on the Home & GARDEN tv Network!

Jan, your friend's garden "cage" sounded great, too bad it was torn down! I bet that was some good homemade bread. That's something I have on my To Do list ... start making homemade bread. Found a brand new bread maker at a yard sale for $3, never had used it yet.

NonaCook, love your website and the rusty bedspring trellis! I wish I could find one of those for my garden, and have been looking for a while now. And to think I've probably thrown away a couple of them years ago! You have some beautiful totems and great garden junk!

Gariann, so glad you like the crazy trellis, it was lots of fun creating it. Good to see you here!


    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 3:31PM
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i have a plethora of the evil squirrels. they eat my birdseed, my bulbs, and whatever else they want. this year i sprinkled crushed red pepper ( its .50 cents a bottle at dollar general)in my pots etc. so far its working. they only dig in the ones i haven't sprinkled yet

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 10:40PM
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Great trellis! I love it(-:
I am sorry about the squirrels. I can't help because I feed mine. I know they can be real pests though.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 11:16PM
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Barbara Kelly

I feed my squirels (sorta) I have a 5 gallon plastic water bottle I cut a large chunk out of. I then ran a large rope through the top hole and tied a knot in it. Hanging this over a tall, tall branch. I fill the bottom with sunflower seeds and watch the fun! The squirels go nuts trying to get to the sunflower seeds, and spend hours climbing the rope only to slide off the top, ocassionally they get in, and enjoy the seed. This keeps them so occupied they ignore everything else in the

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 8:56AM
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I miss squirrels. We just have possums. They make a terrible hissing noise. Makes my puppies go crazy!

All the trellises are beautiful!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 9:29AM
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This is from 07, rebuilt after the winter but think will have to rebuild again. I used little screws but the snow was too heavy combined with the wind...

Here is a link that might be useful: clematis trellis

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 3:16PM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

Caroleena, I am definitely going to try the crushed red pepper this season. I almost always buy my spices at discount stores and will pick up extra red pepper. Thanks!

Thanks Cindee ... I think the squirrels are really cute too. I believe it's the male here that's the most destructive. Wouldn't you just know it? LOL

Dulcimer - that's funny about feeding/not feeding the squirrels! If you ever get bored, you could always watch them! Keeping them occupied is another good idea ....

Cait, we have possums too, I saw one crawling under my deck a couple of years ago. ewwww lol, and I'm in the city limits at that. Good ol rocky top .....

Jewels, I love your trellis too! Perhaps some copper wire could be strung around the joints for extra strength? It works good with cane at times.

I wish I had some fresh cane right now, in the mood to whip up some more trellises. ~tenderlee

    Bookmark   April 3, 2009 at 6:29PM
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My simple trellis.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 5:19PM
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concretenprimroses(4B NH)

dcarch love the trellis. Is that beautiful stone wall the foundation of your house? Love all the trellises.
Deer repellent: My friend in the country in vt swears by irish spring soap hung in a mesh bag. We have wood chucks and squirrels. They don't bother to try to get over the fence very often but the squirrels do for the strawberries.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 6:09PM
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Tenn how do you hold them together??

    Bookmark   April 4, 2009 at 6:29PM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

Dcarch, love your trellis. Really simple and pretty. The rock wall/house is so pretty in the background. Looks like you're quite a gardener!

Leveta, I used jute twine, but it doesn't last long. When I build more I'll probably use wire. I didn't have to tie up very many places, because the weave of the cane held it together pretty well. I tied it to the deck rails with plastic tie straps.


    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:56PM
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Those trellises are great! Much better than a stick stuck in the ground like I have for my 'maters.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 6:09PM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

So here's the tomato bed DH built this year, actually in the garden, and not containers. I know, it'll be even easier for the squirrels now LOL. No problems with them yet, but of course, there are no tomatoes on the vines yet, just blooms. The trouble starts when the fruit starts setting. I'm gonna try some of your suggestions this year!

Anyone else been building any trellises this season? ~tenderlee

    Bookmark   June 28, 2009 at 4:10PM
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Dh is a certified welder. We made this out of conduit, which is pipe...for electrical. The top decoration on the arch are cement form stakes. It't been holding up the clematis and red rose for about 12 years now...:0)

    Bookmark   June 28, 2009 at 8:05PM
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Wow I love everyones trellis!!!! They are all beautiful!

    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 1:20AM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

Thanks, Cindee. I love them all too!

Nicole, Love your pic! Conduit is great, because it's strong and lightweight too. My hubby can weld, but when I ask him about making some things for me, he starts talking big money for the kind of rig he wants. I wonder if that's his way to keep from welding for me lol .... we probably should invest in some better equipment that what he currently has.

I remember someone calling conduit "condo pipe" once. In fact it was an in-law, now deceased. Yeehaw .... LOL ~tenderlee

    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 7:09AM
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tenneseetrash....I love all the trellises too!

BTW....someone died & we got their 2 welders, that's what got us started welding. Next thing I know were at the library looking up how to read welding blueprints & DH's boss is paying to get him certified! :0)

Here's a leaf headboard,footboard "and" side tables we made. Back when we were practicing & needed It's a garden theme....right!? Show your husband, maybe you can get an "I can do it better" competion going and get a few projects smile

    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 9:20AM
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All this stuff is sooo lovely, and of course I'm drooling over the great welding stuff!!! I'd love it if my DH could weld!

    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 12:08PM
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Love all of trellises!!!! I've always dreamed of planting bamboo and making things with it. I have never imagined myself being able to weld!!!! I tip my hat indeed!!!! Good job.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 12:14PM
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I also love seeing all the trellises.
But that welded bed is fantastic! WOW, Nicole, that looks very high-end and expensive. Great design!

hugs, Karen

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 12:07AM
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Thanks for all the compliments on our welded projects! I thought you all might find it interesting I went to Hobby Lobby yesterday and "purchased" 3 new trellis's. The one on the left we made....the other two in the picture I purchased yesterday for $6.80 & $13.60! :0) Much easier!!!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 9:04AM
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Barbara Kelly

OK, thats it, my next marrige will be to a welder! Love the bed, and the arbor..
I've coveted those welded animals from shovels, and metal do dads for years.
Now I've got to chase off this husband...LOL

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 11:09AM
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Love all the trellises and that bed is wonderful. Can't hardly wait til my DH finishes his other projects so he can do some welding for me.

The only trellis I have is a $2 YS one and no pic yet. Doesn't compare to the lovely ones here.

I must be a northern hillbilly cause I think your trellis is wonderful TT!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 11:29AM
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stonycritters(z6 ME)

Here's the Rustic Trellis I just made. Used bittersweet vines for the center pieces.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rustic Trellis

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 11:44AM
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dulcimerduo.....I think you just need to borrow my ruby slippers!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 12:05PM
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stonycritters: love your trellis. There is so much movement in your piece. Is the bittersweet vine like a grape vine?

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 1:20PM
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clarejoe(7 (NJ))

OK, I made my hillbilly trellis from an A-frame of a 2 seater wooden swing that broke and 3 baby gates tied to the A frame!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 3:44PM
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tennesseetrash(7 east tenn)

Wow, Nicole, that bed is a work of art! Contest with your hubby?! No way LOL. You already won! :-) And good that you're putting those welders to such good use!

CalamityJ, I have trouble believing there's anything that you can't do at your house from what I've seen of your talent :-)

Thanks Karen, I agree with you about Nicole's bed being very high end.

SusieRose, if you could ever find an attactive huge container on Freecycle, that would be the way to go with bamboo. There are so many interesting varieties, but it takes over if you don't plant it in its own "island". Really spreads and is hard to get rid of if you decide to dig it up. Trust me on this one! Ugh, I'll never plant it in a mixed garden again! Unless you've got an area just for bamboo, I'd go with a very large container. You might run an an in the Wanted section of Craigslist too maybe. Someone might have some to give you, or barter for a totem maybe :-)

DD, my next marriage is gonna be to a carpenter LOL, but a welder with a rig might qualify LOL. Just kiddin' of course.

Luckygal, you'll have to share pics with us when your hubby gets around to your welding wish list. I've known lots of northern hillbillies ..... western ones too! LOL When I first got to southern Calif I thought it would be all cool and groovy people, this was the '70's. The first person I saw when we reached the beach and got out of the car was some redneck with his ciggarette pack rolled up in his white tee shirt sleeve! LOL Of course he probably came from somewhere around here lol ....

Stoney, I love your natural trellis! I bet it was fun to make! I'm not familiar with bittersweet vines either, but I love how your trellis looks.

Vickie, I agree about the movement in Stoney's natural trellis too. So free flowing ....

And Clarejoe .... I love the bean trellis you've made! How smart and it looks great too! Very good way to reuse an old two seater frame! I like how it looks "older" too. Adds character.

Just for the record, it doesn't have to be a hillbilly trellis, y'all LOL. I love all the trellises. Just thought that one I rigged up on my deck in 2006 was a bit ummmmmm "freestyle" for my historic neighborhood. Maybe they think I'm into witchcraft too LOL (for the newbies, when we did the Junk Train and it came to my house, my son-in-law from Mexico originally, thought I was into some kind of witchcraft hahahahahah) Is that a wart on the end of my nose?! LOL ~tenderlee

    Bookmark   June 30, 2009 at 4:59PM
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stonycritters(z6 ME)

Vickie and Tennesseetrash: In reply to your comments about bittersweet, the vines are similar to grapevines when the plant is young. When the plant is older the vines get very thick and "barky" but are still flexible. Here in Maine they're actually a nuisance because they can stunt the growth of trees by wrapping around them all the way to the top. I have a whole pile of vines that we salvaged from trees that fell down during the winter ice storm, and I'm glad I found a way to recycle them. The trellis was fun to make and I'm anxious to start the next one!

    Bookmark   July 1, 2009 at 12:38PM
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WOW! I just happened on this post and I LOVE the wonderful cane trellises shown (as well as the others). I have never done that kind of thing and I was wondering, what kind of "canes" are you talking about? Is this only bamboo?

    Bookmark   August 22, 2009 at 4:59PM
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