February 13, 2011…Over the years I’ve learned that it is possible to make a lot of the things I need for the garden by myself. I enjoy the creative challenge, saving money, and the satisfaction of knowing I’ve constructed a distinct, one-of-a-kind item that’s (usually) going to be a thing of beauty and serve a special purpose in my garden.
For the past few weeks, I’ve been considering different ways to stake this year’s garden peas. Although I have a lot of metal fencing, and was thinking about either running a straight or curvy strand down the middle of the plot, I wasn’t too thrilled with the idea of such a modern, industrial-looking addition to my garden–my taste is definately more rustic! Although the peas would eventually grow up and hide the fence, the thought of looking at all that metal – in the meantime – was just too much to bear. Then, it came to me! Sitting in the middle of our yard was an old, dead mulberry tree that could be cut up and used to build wooden trellises.
With the help of my oldest daughter, we spent a few hours this afternoon fashioning together five, pyramid-shaped trellises using two simple components: tree limbs and twine. She held the limbs together at the top, as I set the bottom legs in the shape of a square, about 15 inches apart. Once the basic shape was established, I tied all of the pieces together near the top, where the wood criss-crossed each other. Then, we both worked to tie the rest of the smaller limbs to the outside of the frame, in various places, to sturdy the frame, enabling it to stand up on its own. None of the trellises were built in quite the same way; no measuring was done, and limbs were placed in different places and at different heights on each one — but, because the materials are all the same, the result is a unique, and cohesive work of art that I know I will enjoy looking at everyday. I can’t wait ’till they’re covered with oodles of peas!