An interesting way to grow pole beans, garden peas, and other climbing vines in the vegetable garden is by using a teepee trellis. A teepee trellis is typically made up of five or six long pieces of bamboo or other materials. They are constructed by sticking the bamboo stakes in the soil at least a couple inches deep in a circle pattern. The tops of the poles are then brought together in the center of the circle at a point, then tied together using garden twine or some small rope.
Here is how I constructed my pole bean teepee trellises.
The Materials Needed To Construct The Teepees
The good thing about building these teepee trellises is they are very inexpensive and very easy to construct. You only need two items in order to build the teepee trellis:
- You need some type of pole support, such as bamboo stakes (which is what I’m using), small tree branches or something similar to make the sides of the teepee. I am using a set of seven foot long bamboo stakes to build my teepee trellises. I bought these as a set of 6 poles from KMart for about five dollars.
- The next item you will need is a roll of garden twine, or something to use to tie the poles together to form the top of the teepee. You can use anything that will work to tie the poles together – old shoestrings, old pantyhose, or zip-ties will work good.
- Optional: Someone to help you hold the poles together as you tie them at the top.
Setting The Poles Out To Make The Teepee
Once you have all the materials gathered it is time to set the poles out in the place where the teepee will call home. The first thing to do is to loosen the soil up in the area where the pole beans or garden peas will be grown if you haven’t done so already.
Next, take each bamboo pole and push the widest end of the pole into the soil about six to eight inches deep. Try to get it at least six inches deep to make sure it has a proper footing. You want to place each bamboo pole in the soil to form a crude circle shape. The circle doesn’t have to be perfect; just a general circular shape.
You can have the poles as far apart as you like. That will depend mostly on how much room you have. As a general rule, try to keep at least 6 inches between each pole.
Tying The Top Of The Teepee
Once you have the poles inserted in the soil about six to eight inches and at least six inches apart to form a circle, it is time to tie the tops of the poles together to form the teepee.
Begin by grabbing two poles that are opposite of each other and cross the tops of them about four to six inches from the top. Cross the two bamboo pole tops to form an “X”. Grab two more poles that are opposite with one another and cross them at the top to form an “X” like you did the first two.
Once you have all the bamboo poles crossed it is time to secure them together with the garden twine. Tie a knot around the entire bunch, continually wrapping around and retying several times. As my grandfather used to say, “If you can’t tie a knot, just tie alot”.
That’s All There Is To It!
Once you have finished securing the top of the bamboo poles together, the teepee is complete and you are ready to plant your pole beans, garden peas, or cucumbers at the bottom of each pole. When the seedlings emerge, just point them in the direction of the pole and they will grow up each teepee leg.