Saturday, June 9, 2012

Repurposed Garden Tool Trellis

I’ve been meaning to install a trellis on the side of my house for some time.  This portion of my house always seemed like a blank slate- an expanse of siding. Visually this is a common problem with many houses- between windows house look like monoliths- a monotone expanses of siding.  To me this always represents an opportunity to garden vertically with trellises, add architectural elements, and it helps to add some height- to draw your eye up.  And, for me, it is an opportunity to build something.  

I have been making trellises for some time in our garden to dress up the 6’ privacy fence, adorn (or hide) the garage/ shop, for vegetables to grow, etc…  Most of these trellises I’ve made from recycled cedar fence board and they are all the same or based on the same dimensions.  

Making so many of these adds repetition of form that leads to a cohesive feeling to the landscape. This continuity in design is first a reflection of the divided light windows of our 1940’s home.  

To make a lot of these trellises I made a simple jig years ago, so now I can crank them out in no time- whether to support tomatoes, a vine, to keep cats from digging in our vegetable beds, etc…

However, for this side of our house, I wanted something different, something a little more formal, sort of and something unique. 
So, this is what I came up with- a pretty robust and formal frame, but the vertical dividers made of old garden tools, adding a little whimsy and also to show that a gardener lives here. However, the grid formed by the tool handles and the horizontal supports are the same dimensions as the divided lights of our windows.
Like most of my projects, the materials from this one came from Home ReSource- the tools were, obviously, garden tools, and the wood was cedar deck boards and fence posts I re-milled.  Even though most of my projects are made from recycled or re-purposed materials, typically I try to conceal that fact. However, in the case of this trellis and my new, re-purposed potting bench, I embraced the materials heritage, so to speak!
This definitely breaks up the space and adds interest to an otherwise blank wall and, perhaps more importantly, adds a place for white clematis (Clematis ligusticafolia) to climb.  


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