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How do I Construct a Pole Bean Trellis?

Marjorie McAtee
By Marjorie McAtee
Updated May 16, 2024
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Pole beans are a vine plant, and a pole bean trellis can give your pole bean vines a structure around which to entwine themselves. A teepee-like design is generally recommended for growing climbing beans, as it doesn't require the presence opposite, supporting structure. Constructing a pole bean trellis requires bamboo or thin wooden stakes six feet (1.8 m) in length, some durable twine, and a shovel. Pole bean trellises should be constructed around the plants when the seedlings are three to five inches (7.6 cm to 12.7 cm) high. The pole bean trellis should generally be about five and a half feet (1.7 m) high, and about two feet (0.6 m) in diameter, and the poles should usually be firmly lashed together.

To build a pole bean trellis, you will probably need about eight poles per trellis. The poles should typically be made of bamboo or wood. They should generally be no thicker than one half inch (1.3 cm). Start by digging a circle of eight holes, each six inches (15.2 cm) deep. The circumference of the circle should generally be about four feet (1.2 m) to allow enough room inside the trellis for the pole beans to grow.

When digging holes to build a pole bean trellis, you may want to take care not to harm the roots of your bean plants. It's generally recommended that beans be allowed to grow to a height of at least three inches (7.6 cm) before a trellis is constructed around them. When planting your beans, it's often suggested that you remember to allow for trellis space around the beans.

One end of each pole should go into each of the eight holes. Lean the tops of the poles together to form the teepee shape. It's generally recommended that you tie the ends of the poles together firmly with strong twine. It's usually best to wrap the twine around each pole several times before tying it to the next pole. You may want to pull your twine as tight as possible when tying your pole bean trellis poles together.

It's often a good idea to wait until you have finished tying your trellis poles before you bury the poles at the other end. Fill all eight of the holes with soil and tamp it down as tight as possible. This is considered the best way to ensure that your pole bean trellis will remain firmly in place.

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Discussion Comments

By Wisedly33 — On Jul 27, 2014

I've made pole bean trellises, in the teepee shape. They're not difficult to make. You just have to have an idea of how big you want them to be and how many stakes you'll need to accomplish that purpose.

Fortunately, you can make these from scrap lumber as long as the stakes are all roughly the same height. The stakes should be about as big around as a broomstick. They don't have to be large or thick poles.

By Scrbblchick — On Jul 26, 2014

My mom and dad never built a pole bean trellis. They just put long stakes in the ground. Mom tied the young vines to the stakes with pieces of pantyhose (no strictures) and they grew up the stakes just fine. She did the same thing with the tomatoes.

In fact, I don't remember seeing too many pole bean trellises of any kind in gardens, even in those gardens that obviously sported pole beans. Rattlesnake pole beans were the popular varieties around my home, and I saw plenty of stakes, and a few teepees, but not much in the way of trellises.

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