honeysuckle trellis.txt

Making a honeysuckle trellis
by Alan Detwiler April 12, 2013

One way to make a honeysuckle trellis: 200130412

There was a honeysuckle vine on a trellis along the front porch of the house I grow up in. I have pleasant memories of the aroma of honeysuckle and the occasional sighting of wonderous humingbird practically motionless, hovering, drinking from the honeysuckle's blooms then darting away.

I still live in that same house but the trellis long ago decayed away leaving only a few scraggly vines amongst the tall grass surrounding the front porch. Well, last summer I got inspired to resurrect the honeysuckle hopefully to its former glory. I cut 2 12-foot long locust post from tree trunks cut several years ago went I was clearly space for a few apple trees. The posts were set in 2-foot deep holes spaced about 4-feet apart. A 20 penny spike with head hacksawed off was driven half its lenghth into a drilled hole at the top end of each pole. I knotch both each of a 5-inch diameter, just over 4-foot long, locust log to give a flat surface to match the top of each upright post. A drilled hole at each end of the crosspiece accepted the 20 penny spike to hole the crosspiece in place.

Some discarded 60 amp aluminum electrical cable, run vertically served to provide something for the honeysuckle vine to climb. Cable clamps on lap joints at several places joined short pieces of cable together to get the proper lengths. The lower end of each vertical cable was wire tied to a loop of cable running around both poles about 12 inches above ground level. Aluminun nails attach the horizontal loop to the posts.

A half dozen 2 to 3 foot long, ground bound vines were pulled up and tied to the vertical cables. Every week or so, as the vines grew I tied any wayward growth to keep it climbing up the cables. Two of the vines made it over the top of the trellis by summer's end. Now they are on their own. Hopefully, they will continue to do well and within a year bring back a little of the magical wonderment I remember from childhood. Maybe my grandson will be lucky enough to see a hummingbird or a sphinx moth and feel the same as I felt back in my childhood when such experiences were dramatic and suggested that many other wonders awaited.

This is how the trellis looked at summer's end 2012 after having been made just a few months ago.
two vines make it up and over by end of first summer

Best wishes,
Contributed by Alan Detwiler. Bio at

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