How to build a garden obelisk

Check out this garden frame to support vegies like tomatoes, borlotti beans, cucumbers or heavier climbers such as squash, and flowers such as jasmine or climbing roses.

Bunnings magazine, January 2021

Double duty

This handsome garden frame looks striking enough unadorned, but it’s practical too, providing growing support for tasty tomatoes or flowering climbers like fragrant jasmine. If you want to take it to the next level and give it garden art status, place the frame in a large square planter and paint it a matching colour.

Tools and materials

1m length of 6mm sisal twine

40mm galvanised external timber screws

Combination square

Drill with 3mm and 6mm bits, 8G countersinking drill bit and driver

Four 1500mm-long 25mm x 25mm hardwood garden stakes*

Mitre saw or handsaw with mitre box

Tape measure and pencil

Safety equipment (mask, gloves and eye protection)

Scissors

Six 1500mm-long 19mm x 19mm hardwood garden stakes*

Garden obelish steps

1. Make the uprights

On the four 25mm stakes, mark 30mm from the squared ends and drill holes with a 6mm bit for tying with twine. The stake points are at the base and pushed into the ground.

Tip: Use a combination square set at the required length when marking up for repeat measurements.

2. Construct the infills

On four 19mm stakes, mark 800mm from the tips to cut with a mitre saw. To cut the rails, from each offcut cut a 410mm and 285mm length, then from the remaining 19mm stakes cut four 350mm lengths and four 225mm lengths, discarding the tips.

3. Measure, drill and position uprights

Position pairs of uprights with the drilled tops together. On each pair, measure 200mm up from the base, then spread the uprights to position a 410mm rail between them, pre-drilling holes with an 8G countersinking bit and securing with 40mm screws.

Measure 200mm up from the first rail to position 350mm rails, drill and secure, repeating to secure 285mm and 225mm rails.

4. Secure top of frame with twine

Stand the frames up, leaning the tops together to thread twine through the holes, securing tightly and wrapping at least six times to cover the holes, knotting firmly and trimming the excess.

5. Attach rails

To complete the frames, secure the remaining 410mm rails on either side to match the attached 410mm rails. Repeat with the remaining rails, working upwards.

Centre the infills on each side, with the top edge 100mm above the top rail, countersinking and securing into the rails.

Position the obelisk in the garden, pushing the tips of the uprights into the ground.

 

*Timbers vary by state and territory; contact your local store for further information.

More garden structure styles

Check out our step-by-step guide on how to make a bamboo cone support.

 

Photo credit: Cath Muscat

More D.I.Y. Advice

Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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