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Conduit trellis

Posted by lorril 5 (My Page) on
Tue, May 9, 06 at 21:17

Hi! Brand-new gardener here (well, I gardened when I was 8, but that's been quite a while ago!)..... Started my garden earlier this spring before learning about square foot gardening, but still have room to try some summer squash & such in the square foot method.

I'd like to do a trellis from electrical conduit, and I know the basics of how it's done, but have a couple questions. I can get the conduit from HD or Ace H, but I'm not sure how to get it cut or bent. Is that something they can do for me? This will be non-threaded. What's the best way to connect? Also, I've heard that it's easier to hammer rebar into the ground and install the conduit over it. Would you recommend this?

(Couldn't find detailed instructions, if they're already posted someplace, thanks for the link!)


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Conduit trellis

I bought a hacksaw (handsaw for metal) and cut it myself. They usually come in 10' lengths so I got 3 pieces, kept two as the 10' lengths, then cut the last one into 2,4,4 ft pieces.

But! if you know any electricians, they can probably get you some for much, much cheaper than HD, and they could cut it for you.

RE: Conduit trellis


>> "I can get the conduit from HD or Ace H, but I'm not sure how to get it cut or bent. Is that something they can do for me? "

Don't get it bent, the trellis is easier to break down and store if it all ends up being straight pieces. Unless you can scrounge some pieces. I wrap mine in that shrink wrap stuff and it stores in a corner nicely. You can buy a hacksaw and make the few cuts or a pipe cutter, or you could go to you local Ace hardware, be really nice to the folks that work there, and ask them to cut it to the size you want. They you won't buy a tool you only need for this project. I used a pipe cutter but I can use it for other projects I have done.

>> "This will be non-threaded. What's the best way to connect?"

Buy the "L" joiners and tighten the screws. They will help you at the hardware store.

>> Also, I've heard that it's easier to hammer rebar into the ground and install the conduit over it. Would you recommend this?

Yup, did this the first time this year and it is much easier then trying to force the conduit into the ground. One tip, is make sure the 2 foot piece of rebar piece fits into the conduit at the store. Check to make sure at least 1 end doesn't have a bend that will prevent the conduit from going over it. Check each piece. Make sure you hammer them into the ground straight straight.

Other recommendation, I cut my 10 foot pieces into 6 & 4 foot lengths. You could go as high as 7 feet but you dont want to go beyond that since you can't reach that high to pick the crop. Also the taller it gets the less unwieldy the whole rig becomes. 4 foot wide is a nice width and you can manage to mount the trellis over the rebar by yourself.

Are you going to use stings or the pre-made netting? The choice depends more on what youre growing although the netting forks for everything.

Good luck,


RE: Conduit trellis

  • Posted by dexygus z8, austin, tx (My Page) on
    Wed, May 10, 06 at 16:40

i concur with clonezero. 6 and 4 foot lengths. the 4-ft one can be the horizontal piece that goes across on top. and the L-shaped elbows with screws are working really well for me.

also, at my local HD, they have a cutting "station" where you can cut the conduit yourself. it was a little bit scary though, so i had my husband cut it. as an aside, i just have to vent about how unhelpful the HD employees are. on a previous visit, i was cutting some wood at one of the stations for about 15 minutes, and not once did anyone ask if i needed help. grrr.

RE: Conduit trellis

  • Posted by pat_w CNY Z5 (My Page) on
    Wed, May 10, 06 at 20:58

I didn't bother cutting or bending my conduit. And I didn't use connectors or conduit across the top. I used a piece of 1x3 lumber, drilled a hole in each conduit and each end of the wood and fastened with bolts. I did this about 3 feet from the top and near the bottom about 6 inches above the top of my raised bed.

RE: Conduit trellis

Yesterday I got black 1/2" water pipe from Home Depot. They have a Rigid Pipe cutting machine that they used to cut the pipe for me at no charge. I'm sure they would be able to cut the conduit as well. I liked the fact that the water pipe is threaded so I can take it apart easily in the fall. I do want to paint it with rust proof paint though so it doesn't get rusty.

RE: Conduit trellis

is the trellis as explained the SFG book, strong enough for the heavier melons? some of the other threads seem to indicate that the trellis is not adequate enough


Be sure to cap your rebar when not using it! !! Could really hurt

They have orange caps you put on them when they are exposed.

RE: Conduit trellis


Can't remember what page but they said in the book they were growing 35 pound pumpkins off a 7 foot trellis (conduit and nylon netting). They have also never had anyone physically be able to break the nylon netting at any seminar.

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