Adding a metal trellis to your garden can be a beautiful and interesting visual garden element. Metal garden trellises can be constructed out of wrought iron, copper or other metal materials, but they provide their own unique challenges when placed in the garden.
Metal conducts heat. As a result, a metal trellises can become very hot on summer days or when the sun is shining directly down on them. Tender plants can suffer as a result of the heat that radiates from the metal as it becomes overly hot.
When possible, place your wrought iron or metal trellis in an area where it will receive shade during the hottest part of the day. This will prevent plants from being singed or burnt by the metal.
Another potential danger with metal trellis designs is that in very cold climates they have a tendency to freeze. As with too much heat, too much cold and freezing can also damage plants. If possible, bring a metal trellis inside during winter months when there is danger of freezing temperatures. This will also give you the opportunity to make any needed repairs to the metal of the trellis and to repaint or renovate the trellis to get it ready for spring planting.
Wrought iron and other metal trellises can also be subject to the corrosive effect of water exposure during winter and other seasons. Wrought iron, cast iron and other metals are subject to rusting or other damage.
To prevent rust, periodically clean the metal and spray it with a rust protectant product, which can be purchased at almost any hardware or home improvement center.
Do not place a metal trellis in a location where it will be constantly subjected to water, since this will increase the likelihood of water damage to the metal.
Even with a heavier metal trellis design, you will need to be careful of where you place the trellis in your garden.
Avoid Windy Locations. Not only will a windy location potentially damage delicate plants, but it can prevent pollination which will allow your plants to continue to grow or fruits and vegetables to grow. A weak or lightweight metal trellis will also be damaged and fall down with heavy winds.
Avoid Locations Blocked by Buildings. While you want to avoid too much wind, you also want to avoid too much shade that will prevent your plants from growing well. If you place the trellis in a garden location that is blocked by a building, you will prevent the plants from getting enough sun.
Avoid Southern Exposure Locations. Not only does a southern exposure provide a high amount of sunlight that may make the metal too hot for the plants, but it may also make the metal too hot to be touched by any children or others who will be near or around the structure.
Adding a metal trellis can be an excellent artistic enhancement to the garden. Trellises can be made of cast iron, copper piping, wrought iron, wood lattice or rustic willow twigs. No matter what type of trellis you choose to place in your garden, it will provide a wonderful place for clinging plants to grow.