How To Build a Squash Arch

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How To Build Squash Arch

Squash is a bully in the garden, and it will take over if you don’t control it. I used to grow my squash on the ground, and train the vines to stay in a neat row (well, as neat as squash can be). Not anymore, now the squash in my garden grows vertically. I built a squash arch to tame my squash, and now I have a wonderful piece of architecture in my garden too.

How To Build A Squash Arch

It was extremely easy to put this arch together. Originally, I was going to build it the same way I built my arched trellises for my beans and cucumbers. But the metal garden fencing I had isn’t strong enough to hold up heavy squash on it’s own around the top of the arch. So we (my husband helped me with this project) decided to add PVC piping to support it.

To make the arch tall enough, we needed two pieces of PVC pipe for each side. We glued them together using a special PVC glue and then weaved the PVC into the fencing.

Weaving PVC Into Fencing

Weaving PVC Into Fencing

Next, we pounded rebar into the ground to hold the arch in place. This took four pieces of rebar, one for each end of the PVC pipe. The pipe slides over the rebar to hold it in place.

Squash Arch Trellis

Squash Arch Trellis

Once the squash arch was up, I spray painted the PVC black to make it look like metal. You can paint it any color you want, be creative! Just make sure to paint it before you plant any seedlings so they don’t get sprayed with paint. Also, it’s better to paint the squash arch after you put it up. If you paint it first, then the paint will get scratched when you start to move the squash arch around.

Squash Arch

Squash Arch

That’s it, building a squash arch couldn’t be any easier. Amazing right? Who knew squash could be so beautiful! My favorite types of squash to grow on my arch are Sugar Pie Pumpkins, Butternut and Delicata. Many people are afraid to grow squash vertically because it’s so heavy. But, most of the squash sit on top of the arch. If any squash start to hang down, I put them back on top. The heavy squash can also be supported by making a sling out of an old t-shirt or nylons to support their weight.

Squash Arch In The Garden

Squash Arch In The Garden

I’m super excited about this arch, I absolutely love it! So many people rave about it, and it’s the focal point of my vegetable garden. It has made squash control very easy, and my squash no longer take over the garden. It also makes harvesting the squash a breeze, since I don’t have to bend down and hunt for it.

Interested in building your very own squash arch? Click the “Add To Cart” button to purchase your step by step instructions, for only $0.99! (via PayPal)

Building A Squash Arch – Step by Step Instructions

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  1. says

    I think this is a great idea, and I bet it helps with vine borers too.

    Do the squash and pumpkins climb it themselves, or do you have to continually train them on it?

    I look forward to seeing the results.

    • says

      Thanks! I don't think the arch will help with the borers, but that's what the raised bed is for. I dig out the borers when I notice damage. Then I add some dirt to the bed, burying the borer damaged part of the vines. The plants will grow new roots as the stems are buried with dirt. I did this last year, and it worked great! I was harvesting squash until the cold killed the plants.

  2. says

    I've used this method before with cucumbers and squash and it works really well. Pumpkins need extra support so that they don't rip off the vine when they get too heavy but you can just use some old clothes or fabric scraps to "swaddle" them for extra support. Good luck, I'm eager to see your results.

    • KathleenW says

      For smaller squash or melons, you can use an old bra! I did it this past summer and it worked perfectly for my Uzbekistan melons. Pumpkins I guess would be too large, hee hee! But it would be easy to use a long sleeve shirt by pinning the cuffs together along with a pinch or two of the hem, pinning all together up at the top of the frame to make a cradle for the pumpkin. Nice blog, thanks for

  3. says

    I live in an apartment right now and am putting a garden on my roof this year. I was just thinking about building something like this for all of the squash I started; so glad I came across this post and can't wait to follow along and see how it works for you!

  4. Susan says

    I love, love, love this! Can't wait to try it next year. This summer I built a similar structure, but it was to protect blueberries and strawberries from the deer and rabbits. I used PVC pipe and wove it through chicken wire–thought it was an original idea! :)

  5. Anonymous says

    I'm a new follower and I've seen many design's for trellising squash and the like and this is the 1st one that has actually jumped out at me. It's to late for this year but next year I'll be in the know, I love the design. My cucumber's has over taken my bamboo teepee's this year and are going wild. Thank's for sharing this and have a great weekend! P.S. Your

    • says

      Hi, thanks for the new follow! Glad you like my squash arch, I'm happy with the way it turned out. Isn't it fun when stuff starts to take off and grow like crazy. I figure in a week or two, it will be hard to walk through the vegetable garden. I love this time of year! Thanks for the nice comment about my gardens too. :-)

    • says

      Hi Crystal,
      So, so sorry for the delayed response on this. I painted over the PVC, so I wasn't sure how to tell what size it was, then I realized that you can see it in one of the pictures. Ha, ha. Anyway, it's 1/2" PVC. Basically, I took a piece of the fencing to HD with me to see what size of PVC would fit. So, depending on the type of fencing you use, the diameter of the PVC

  6. Kelly says

    Love this! Like you I don't have a truck for the cattle panels. How did you secure the PVC pipe in the ground? Also, do you remember how long the PVC pipe is? Does it come rolled up or in straight pieces?

    Thank you!

    • says

      Hi Kelly,
      Thanks! We used 4 pieces of rebar as stakes into the ground and then we slipped the PVC over the top. I hope this makes sense. Test each piece of rebar to make sure it will fit into the PVC pipe before you buy it. We discovered that not all pieces of rebar are skinny enough to fit. The PVC comes in straight pieces, you can find it in the plumbing section at HD or Lowe's. I can&

  7. Anonymous says

    I made this today – thanks for the inspiration! Did you plant the squash inside the boxes or outside? Do you think it would work to plant them in pots on the outside and train them up the arch from there?

  8. says

    Thanks so much for your inspiration!
    My husband and I have reclaimed an abandoned city lot for our veggie & herb garden this year, and we constructed a squash arch for it today, based on your blog.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I hope it holds up…time will tell :)
    Here's a picture, if you want to check it out!

  9. Anonymous says

    love the arch idea am wanting to do one myself but what i realy was lookin at was the greenhouse around it. gives me wow some great ideas. so I'm assuming you take the greenhouse down for summer or do you move the trelis? samona dowler facebook will like your page

    • says

      The arch is actually separate from the greenhouse frame. So, the arch stays up year round. But the greenhouse (which fits over the arch) comes down in the spring, and goes up in the fall. We also take the greenhouse down for the winter, so the greenhouse is only up for a few months in the fall, and a few months in the spring.


  10. says

    It looks beautiful–and big enough to go under. I think it would be so lovely with roses too!

    It looks like your hoop house must be portable? You seem to have covered the arch garden in the winter? Is that right? I hope you will share your hoop plans someday.

    • says

      Yes, I made it tall enough to walk under. Though it could be a bit taller for my husband, he has to crouch down a bit. :-)

      Yes, we built our hoop house the same size as our vegetable garden so it covers the whole thing. We put it up before frost in the fall, and this year we left it up all winter. It's warm enough in there now that I can start seeding soon. Can't wait!

  11. Julee Celeste says

    What a super idea, and so decorative, too! When my husband and I finally close on the house we’re buying and I am able to plant a garden, I will definitely use this idea. Thanks for posting it!

  12. Carrie McColl says

    I used a cattle panel seems to be working well but I really like the idea of the woven fence , we always have a section left over from fencing around here… it will be put to good use this time. I use it mostly for melons , I will do some winter squashes this way this year. Great timing as I am getting ready to plant everything.

  13. Kimberley says

    I built my arch earlier this spring with my nine-year-old daughter it was a great project for us! My two questions are how many individual squash plants do you typically have a growing up the trellis, and what are the dimentions of the planting area at the base of the trellis?

    Thank you!

    • Amy Andrychowicz says

      Wonderful, I’m so excited to hear that you built your own squash arch! I’m not exactly sure how many plants I’ve put in the past few years. Probably 6 or 8 seedlings/seeds per side, then thin out the weak ones. I’m not sure what you mean by the dimensions of the planting area at the base of the trellis. If you’re asking about the dimensions of my raised beds, they are 2’x4′.


      • Kimberley says

        Perfect that answers my question! I’d read from another source to have only one squash plant per 4 ft wide trellis and that left me thinking I wouldn’t get much yield. I’ve got 4 plants per side in raised beds that are 1.5’x3′ which seems consistent with your planting.

        Thanks for the inspiration, I’m eagerly awaiting a full squash arch later this summer!

  14. Ed Abayon says

    If I buy the book Building a Squash Arch, do you send a pdf copy of it via my email? Am from Philippines. I just need a pdf copy, to avoid shipping cost .

  15. Diana says

    Hello, I loved your idea so much that I purchased the PDF and am planning on building two of these this year Such a great idea!

    Two questions: I can’t tell from the pictures how ‘woven’ the pvc is in the fencing but it looks like you skipped a few fencing squares between weavings? Could you comment on that?

    Also, in your experience is 3″ of rebar long enough above ground to keep the trellis adequately stabilized?

    Thanks so much, this is the most functional, economical and relatively easy to build trellis idea I’ve seen yet!

    • says

      Awesome, hope you enjoy it! :-) I loosely weaved the PVC into the fencing. Yes, just enough rebar to stabilize the arch. Once you get it in, you can readjust if you need to. You’ll see how stable it is once you put the arch up. :-)


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