Traditional rose-covered archways look wonderful, especially in a country setting, framing entrances into flower or vegetable gardens. One of the easiest ways to make such an archway is to extend a simple wooden arch by adding trellis panels. These panels create a framework onto which rambling roses (or other climbing plants) will grow, and by enclosing the arch on either side in this way, the mystery of the space beyond will be maintained. The following instructions are based on a simple wooden arch kit with 8 feet (2.4 m) posts.
A few things to keep in mind when constructing a trellis: Buy pre-assembled trellis panels to save time and trim to the required size if necessary. Use treated trellis panels in the arch and for the side panels; newly sawn edges should be smoothed down and treated with preservative. Make sure to also support trellis panels in a level position with blocks of wood before attaching.
a constructed simple wooden arch
hammer or mallet
2 narrow sections of treated trellis panels, suggest 6 feet (1.8 m) tall
2 large square trellis panels, suggest 4 feet (1.2 m) tall
2 spiked metal post supports or "shoes"
2 treated wooden posts, at least 3x3 inches (7.5x7.5 cm), suggest 4.5 feet (1.35 m) tall
8 galvanized panel clips
rustproof screws and nails
2 ball finials (optional)
The basic wooden arch may be extended into a traditional rose arch; slot narrow trellis sections between the front and back posts and add a trellis panel to each side of the existing arch.
Trim the narrow trellis sections to size if necessary, then slot into the side of the arch, keeping the base just above ground level. Check the panel is straight, then screw to the top, middle, and bottom of both posts.
Hold the side trellis panel absolutely flush between the front arch post and the shoe of the metal support. Mark precisely where the post support should be.
When you have done one side of the arch, erect the trellis panels on the other side in exactly the same way. After all four panels are completed, it is wise to check that the posts are firm and that the panel clips are screwed tight. Sand down any rough edges, then treat any cut and exposed ends of lumber with preservative. You are now ready to plant the climbing or rambling roses of your choice.