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Jim Long Demonstrates Making Bentwood Arbors

Jim Long, author of the book Making Bentwood Arbors and Trellises, explains how to create these artistic garden ornaments. Whenever I'm designing elements for my garden, I always keep in mind, that the more natural they are the better they seem to fit in and that's exactly what I did when I created my rustic trellis. But others have taken this idea a step further. Jim Long, author of the book Making Bentwood Arbors and Trellises, explains how to create these artistic garden ornaments.

Jim Long, Long Creek Herbs: I find that lots of people can't identify wood so, my rule of thumb is, if it bends use it. And one of the nice things about this project is you don't really have to do very much measuring and the first step is to attach a crosspiece. All I'm going to do is nail through the top piece into the bottom. What I do is kind of establish the arch that looks about the right proportion. There's no measurement again.

Match it with this piece and I like to twist one around the other so it kind of helps hold it in place.

So this is our basic trellis shape. All of my trellises are built on this foundation.

Rustic trellises and arbors can create visual interest simply standing alone in the garden. Or they can be useful supports to plants like a vigorous climbing rose.