northstory + co.

How to make a bean trellis for under $5

It’s an insane heat wave over on our end. So what do I do? Garden. Because, you know while drinking copious amounts of lemonade and feeling like jello, that’s what a sane person does during a heat wave. After sitting in your kids splash pool of course. So I am going to show you how to make a bean trellis for under $5 for your garden!


This all started because I sat there staring at my peppers last week in the vegetable garden. I was annoyed that they were hogging a prime 8 hour sunlight spot in the garden and they really shouldn’t be there. You learn things pretty fast when gardening as to what vegetables to plant where.

I was like “Hey, why not have bean trellis to join them?”. Off to the stores I went. 


  • Two, six foot bamboo poles (these cost me $1.29 each)
  • A 50 foot roll of twine (this cost me $1.25)
  • Scissors


Bamboo of course naturally has these ridges in the poles. When choosing bamboo try to find ones with ridges, that when the poles are standing next to each other, are in the same spot side by side.

If not, you’re going to to have to hang your twine diagonally. This doesn’t bother me. It may bother you. Also try to find ones with a ridge close to the tip of the bamboo pole for your top twine line.


Go to your garden and stick the bamboo poles where you want your beans to grow. In the first photo I share below, in my garden, the poles are approximately 3 feet in width (36″).

  1. Get your twine and scissors.
  2. Start at the bottom of your poles and tie your twine above one ridge on the left pole.
  3. Then go across to the right side pole, and tie it on the corresponding ridge there.
  4. Stand up.
  5. Repeat the same thing at the top of the poles, and tie your twine across the top ridges.

This will give you a rough ‘stable’ parameter to work in for the middle twine tying part. Meaning, your poles won’t flop or move around too much while you’re tying the rest of your twine.

6) Go back to the bottom. Repeat diagonal ties with twine, all the way up.

The great and important thing about the bamboo ridge is that it prevents your twine from sliding down.

So you don’t need any hooks or nails into the wood poles.

NOTE: Technically you can just do one tie on the bottom left pole, and then wrap your twine around a ridge on the right pole, and weave it diagonally all the way up.

I chose not to do this, just in case a piece of twine breaks.

Because if the twine broke, then I’d only have to replace that one, horizontal broken piece of twine. If I had one continuous piece of twine, winding all the way up, and that broke, I would have to replace the twine for the whole trellis.

Which would get a little insane if your beans were already growing on it.

This was my high tech method of securing the poles to the fence. Thumb tack into the fence.

They poles were doing pretty good standing on their own though. I just did that to tighten the top line more.


Then I took the twine and tied four strands of it from the top twine, vertically to the bottom one. You’re creating a web of twine.

Sorry if it’s hard to see.

And you’re done!


Another important thing when you place your bean trellis in your garden, is to leave some distance from the back of your garden bed frame. This is so that the beans can interweave themselves into the twine as they grow.

It’s not necessary but I’ve found it makes it easier, especially when you’re planting several rows of beans.


If you are not doing this trellis in a garden bed near a fence, I highly recommend getting two bamboo sticks per side, and creating an X / tee pee tip. You can tie them together with twine.

This will ensure its stability when holding the weight of your beans and remain standing.

Like the ones I made for my Squash below.

This was another inexpensive trellis I made, and this cost me $2 per wire panel at the dollar store. I am going to attempt to to grow my acorn squash upwards and to create some shade for the spinach.

I flipped 2 spiral fan wire trellises upside down, and tied them together at the top with garden wire. From what I’ve read, squash tends to grow good on a triangle shape like this.

Just don’t do this in a heat wave. I’m pretty sure I’ve scared off the birds with my sexy raccoon eye smeared mascara.

How did the squash do? It grew. Until it got eaten to pieces by squash beetles. The first year of gardening was a huge eye opening lesson in insects, what to plant where and why we eventually changed the entire shape of this garden bed. But the red framed, wire trellis we made, came with it.

But the beans grew super well!

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  • Reply
    June 21, 2012 at 11:06 am

    You are a gardening goddess! Great tips for the beans and your squash trellis is great. The only time we grew squash it ran and took over the whole space. Obviously we didn’t know what the heck we were doing… learned lots since then. I love a garden… and yours is sooo fine!
    Those raccoon eyes are a sign of a woman who’s getting it done! And if it keeps the birds away I need to put away my waterproof stuff and get to sweating!

    • Reply
      June 21, 2012 at 11:14 am

      LOL!!!! I need that laugh this morning after bikini shopping with a toddler in tow. That could be a blog on it’s own.

      • Reply
        June 21, 2012 at 12:17 pm

        Bikini shopping with our without a toddler leaves me in tears. Tears from laughing and from crying! AHHHH… Why do the mirrors lie to me? At least having a toddler in tow would distract me from my reflection. HAVE FUN!

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