Fast, Cheap, Gorgeous Garden Screen

Vine screen hides utility box

Utility meters are uninvited guests in a garden.

utility closeup

Many times, these metal monstrosities are installed in front yards in prime locations, creating an eyesore and design challenge for the homeowner.

I came across a fast and inexpensive solution for screening an ugly view such as the above in front of a hotel in Pismo Beach, California.

Constructed with lodgepoles and heavy duty galvanized wire, the humble system serves as an impromptu support for a “living screen” vine.

lodge pole

The beauty of this “instant screen” is that it doesn’t require any construction  and can be put up in 5 minutes!


Screen long view

Lodgepoles are spaced 4-feet apart and eyebolts are inserted to hold the wire taut.

Pressure treated wood lodgepoles are available at your local nursery or landscape center and come in lengths ranging from 5 feet to 12 feet tall. They only cost  a few dollars each making them an affordable alternative to lumber.

My advice is to use tall poles and bury them a few feet deep for more sure support. The poles in the photo have a finished height of 6 feet.

Garden screen

Vines can be planted at the foot of each post or centered in between them. Regular trimming assures that the vine doesn’t outgrow and burden the fence with heavy growth.

Vine closeup

The colorful blooms and glossy foliage of the evergreen trumpet vine assures a beautiful screen, year-round.

One Response to “Fast, Cheap, Gorgeous Garden Screen”

  1. [...] are some examples of outdoor dining areas that I've designed using "weird," recycled, inexpensive and non-traditional [...]

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