Gardening Devices – Vine Arbors

Gardening Devices – Vine Arbors

History of Arbors

vine arborsVine arbors were used throughout history as far back as the Egyptian gardens. These gardens were fashioned after the oasis, isolated sections of plant life in a vast desert area. The gardens included irrigation canals, pools of water, walls for barriers from outside elements, architectural structures such as pillars and statuary. In this structural framework, lattices, trellises, and arbors were introduced to conform plants to the architectural design. Not left to their natural development, vines, fruit trees, and ornamental plants were trained to be consistent with the construct that provided water, shade, and easy access. In this formal construct began the development and use of the arbor.


Over time, the Romans used arbors, and eventually they spread throughout Europe. The structure’s design supports vines growing along the sides and over the top, its original purpose being to provide shade for the seating it covered. Today, vine arbors are defined in a much broader sense, blurred with those of a trellis, which has various designs. It is a single flat structure with ground support to stand alone or attached to walls. Another has two sides and overhead that is flat or arched and used at entries to gardens or over walkways and paths. There is no visual difference in appearance or purpose from an arbor until utilized in the garden. However, not all arbors are sold with seating attached, leaving its use vague.


Defining the Purpose

For this reason, the structure can be utilized as either a trellis to walk through along a path or as an arbor to sit under in the garden. Some factors to consider are the size, space, and purpose of both structure and climbing vine. Trellises along walkways or paths in a large garden, constructed of heavy, durable material, support weightier plants such as Wisteria. Higher structures allow for its draping flowers overhead and along the sides. Depending on the size and space chosen in the garden, using Wisteria can overwhelm a seating area. Other vine arbor plants, more suitable for the size and shape of the structure, render it a more aesthetically pleasing feature to sit under and enjoy in the garden.


A Variety of Materials and Designs

With this in mind, the following vine arbors from Amazon show a variety of different designs constructed out of durable vinyl, metal, and wood – with and without seating. Their manufacture’s description for arbors without built-in seating leaves the purpose optional for use as a trellis or an arbor. When choosing an arbor, consider the size of climbing vines and how they will grow in and around the structure. Sides made of closely spaced lattice keep vines from growing in or around the structure, or keep their growth confined to the outside of the arbor, which may be intentional. Since seating is a consideration with arbors, included are the exterior dimensions of the following structures.


New England Arbors Athens Arbor, by New England Arbors

Durable and sturdy, the arched arbor is made of weather-resistant vinyl and requires no maintenance, except occasional washing off with a hose. The 20-year warranty covers problems such as warping, cracking, yellowing, and rotting. Detailed instructions are included, and technical support by phone is also available. Its dimensions are 39″W x 23″D x 81″H.



Steel Outdoor Garden Arbor (7-ft.) in Powder Coated Black Verdigris Finish with Intricate Scrollwork Design – Ideal for Climbing Vines and Plants, by Gardman

This steel frame construction is weather-resistant and perfect for climbing vines. It has a black verdigris powder coat finish and an elegant, classic design. Its dimensions are 45″W x 20.5″D x 82″H.




New England Arbors, Westhaven Arbor by, New England Arbors

Also constructed of durable, sturdy vinyl, this arbor by New England Arbors has a flat, pergola-designed top. It has a span for a sidewalk up to 50 inches. Used as a traditional arbor, it accommodates seating within the stated space. Its dimensions are 57″W x 24″D x 81.75″H.




Greenstone American Bungalow Arbor, by Greenstone

Elegantly designed with a curved header, the cypress wood is stained, adding durability. Recommendations include using a white protector stain to resist weathering. Its dimensions are 59″W x 29.75″D x 83.12″H. Interior width is 40.5″.




Panacea 89088 Steel Flat Top Arbor with Finials, Black, by Panacea Products

The design of this flat-top arbor facilitates the initial upward growth of vine climbing plants. It is constructed of steel and is rust-resistant. It dimensions are 76″W x 26″D x 84″H.




Oakland Living Royal Arbor with Bench, Black, by Oakland Living

True to its name, this arbor comes with a bench. The arbor is constructed of tubular iron, with a hardened powder coat black finish, this beautiful arbor is fade, chip, and crack-resistant.  Its dimensions are 46″W x 17.5″D x 78″H.




Bosmere PERVIC Rowlinson Victoria Arbor with Seat and Lattice Back/Sides, Natural Finish, by Bosmere

This classic Victorian design defines this structure as an arbor. The slatted roof and lattice back and sides make a cozy, light, airy foundation for garden vines to grow over, providing a beautiful, private setting. Its dimensions are 4’4″W x 2’7″D x 6’6″H.


Vine Arbors are a Beautiful Investment

Vine arbors are a beautiful feature in flower gardens. They provide a private, peaceful place to sit alone or with someone. Regardless if you purchased your vine arbor as a trellis, it is the seating arrangement and the enjoyment it brings that makes an arbor worth the investment.


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