Arched trellis from cattle panels
I recently posted some of this information on another, largely lost and unrelated, thread in this forum. I've concluded it would be more searchable with its own thread. With all of us soon to need support for peas, tomatoes, sweet peas, purple hyacinth beans and more, I hope forum members agree it merits a stand alone thread.
This picture shows neonposey's purple hyacinth beans just getting started, and was taken before I planted the cukes. You'll also notice the cardboard in place waiting for wood chips, and a couple of bags of leaves. Too bad I didn't take an after pic because it really was pretty. This picture however, is probably better anyway because it shows the structure itself.
Last year I found a thread in the Vegetable Growing forum with detailed instructions for making an arch out of a cattle panel. At a cost of $14.88 each, they were cheap and easy. I used them to grow cucumbers. For beauty, I located them at the openings to my wooded paths and planted two purple hyacinth beans at the front opening.
It worked well enough that I planned to grow my sugar snap peas on them this winter, then switch the trellis to warm weather cukes again. I haven't actually sown the peas yet, but it might work for you.
I tried to locate the old thread for you, with the post from hunter_tx, but it is gone. I will try to explain it as well as she did, because it really is easy.
I was able to do the first one by myself, but found a partner really makes it easier. Put the cattle panel on a flat surface (concrete is better than grass). Working from the outside, fold one end to match the other. Have your partner hold the two ends together while you step a crease into the middle. Gloves are beneficial.
I found the arch to have its most pleasing proportions when the base was spaced exactly 5 feet wide. This also allowed me to drive my lawn tractor through. I used a couple of railroad ties to determine placement, holding them in place with stakes and setting the arch on the inside. I reached up to grab hold of the peak of the arch and pulled down to get the curve in the arch. Next I snipped the bottom horizontal row of wire away with bolt cutters. This left a series of vertical spikes which I shoved into the ground. Once it was anchored I removed the railroad ties to use on the next one.
I did one single this way and two doubles. I found that by putting two end to end I got a longer tunnel.
I really was easy, and cheap.
The following comments are responses to follow up questions:
I don't know if you can bring a cattle panel home in a van. The ones I bought were 52 inches wide by 16 feet long. The store had a policy against loading 16 foot long items into a pick up bed (good call) so I had to bring a trailer.
I bought mine at a local lumber yard called Lumber 2. They were also available at Atwood's...