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Project Ideas: Garden Club

How To Build a Copper and Redwood Trellis



2 - ½” x 10” Copper pipe

6‘ - #4 Bare copper wire – heart

5‘ - #10 Bare copper wire – believe and retaining pins

2‘ - #12 Bare copper wire – wrap wire for heart

1 – 1 3/8” x 1 3/8” x 12’ Redwood

8 - 2 ½” Screws

1 - Clear spray enamel



Measuring tape

Combination square

Painters or Masking tape


Safety glasses



Drill bits regular 7/64 and 7/32 and a forstner 5/8”

Wire/cable cutters

Pipe cutter





Once you gather all of your materials and tools it’s time for the fun part building the Copper and Redwood Trellis.


Step 1


Cut the 1 3/8” x 1 3/8” x 12’ redwood in half and then cut 2 - 4” pieces off each piece for the back support pieces. You should end up with 4 pieces at 4” and 2 pieces at approx. 63.5” the final size will depend on the thickness of the saw blade.


Step 2

Tape together the 63.5” pieces so that they are perfectly lined up with each other. Set them so that they are stacked on top of one another. This is the side that you’re going to place your marks for drilling the holes. I used a hand drill but if you have access to a drill press it would be much more accurate. **The holes need to be as straight as possible so that the pipes will align properly.


Step 3

Starting at one end place a mark at 7.5” down and then every 6” after that. Once you have all 10 marks go back and cross mark at the center point. **Always use safety glasses when using a drill.

Use the 5/8” forstner bit to drill all 10 holes. The bit will not go all the way through both boards. So separate the boards after you drill all the holes and then place the bottom board on a scrap piece of wood and finish drilling the hole all the way through. **VARY IMPORTANT: MAKE SURE AND HOLD THE DRILL STRAIGHT UP AND DOWN or the pipes may not line up correctly. Sand and round over all edges. Make sure and sand the hanging blocks also.  


Step 4

Measure and mark every 24” on the copper pipe. Use the pipe cutter to cut and deburr all ends.

Use the sandpaper to clean the pipe. I sanded them after I cut them so they were easier to handle.

Step 5

Lay one of the pieces of wood with the holes facing up and insert a pipe in each hole. It will be very snug but should fit. Now place the other piece of wood on the opposite end of the pipes.

Start at one end and work your way down by inserting each pipe as you go. Once all pipes are in both pieces of wood lay it sideways on a concrete surface and use the mallet to slowly pound the wood down the pipes till all pipes are sticking out 4” from the wood. Make sure and work the wood from one end to the other till all pipes are even at 4”.

The wood should end up 16” apart at the outer edges.

Step 6

Place the unit flat on a table with the front (best) side facing down. Insert the 7/64 drill bit into the drill. Drill a hole at the center of each pipe through the wood and one side of the pipe.

Insert the #10 bare copper wire and cut it approximately ¼” away from the wood for the retaining pin. Hammer the pin into the pipe till its flush with the wood. I did one pipe at a time so it wouldn’t move before I could get the pins set. Continue till all pipes have 2 retaining pins.

Step 7

Center 2 of the hanging blocks in between the 2nd and 3rd pipes and the other 2 in between the 7th and 8th pipes. Predrill 2 holes in each and screw them in place.

Step 8

Mark the center point of the ends on both uprights with 7 ½” of wood from the first pipe. Insert the 7/32 drill bit into the drill and drill a hole 1 ½” deep in each upright. I placed a piece of blue painters’ tape around the drill bit at 1 ½” up from the tip to make sure I drilled the hole the correct depth. Set the unit aside.


Step 9

Draw or Google a scroll heart image approximately 7 3/4” x 6”. Also print out the word BELIEVE in script font. (Or any other work of your choice) It should be around 8 ½” long. They will be the pattern that you will bend the copper wire to match.


Step 10

Draw out the bottom 2 bends so that it will fit into the holes that you drilled on the tops of the trellis. I transferred the heart pattern to the same piece of paper that the bottom designs were on. That way the entire top piece is on one pattern. Use a string or a thin piece of paper to trace one side of the pattern. (heart and lower section) This will tell you how long the piece of #4 copper needs to be for each side. Cut one piece of #4 copper to that size. Make sure the length is correct before you cut the second piece.

Step 11

 Use the pliers and/or your hands to bend the wire so that it matches the pattern. Once you’re happy with the first side (even if it’s not exactly as the pattern) bend the other side to match. No one will see the pattern so as long as your happy with it your all good. **Make sure and use gloves to protect your hands.


Step 12

Once you have both sides done lay both sides of the heart design in place and tape them together. This will help hold it together when you’re wrapping the tie wire in place. Cut 2 - 12” pieces of the #12 wire. Use the pliers to bend a ½” 90-degree angle on one end.

Place the bent end in the middle where the 2 sides meet and hold it there with the pliers. Bend/wrap the wire around both sides as tight and as many times as possible (6-8) till the end is at the back. Trim as needed. Do the same thing at the bottom of the heart. Take off the tape. Insert the ends into the holes that you drilled. You may need to bend it a tad to make it fit.

Step 13

Now for the word art. Use the same method that you did for the hearts to figure out how long you need the wire to be. Make sure that you add enough additional wire for both sides to attach it to the sides. My word is 8 ½” wide so I added 16” (8” each side) to the length that I need for the actual word. This gives me enough to center the word and wrap it around the other copper wire to hold it in place. You will start your first bend at whatever length you added. My first bend was at 8”.


Step 14

When you finish your word center it in between the wood uprights and bend/wrap the wire around the #4 wire till you have 5-6 wraps. Trim the wire so that the end is on the back.


Step 15

Now all that’s left is to spray a clear protective coat on it and let it dry completely, and then add your favorite vine. I used a 5-gallon Stephanotis that was already climbing a few bamboo sticks. I very carefully unwound the vines and then wrapped them around my trellis and away it went. 


Helpful Hints

-Have the store associate cut the wood for you. Much easier to take home.

-Use self-taping screws instead of wire for the retaining pins. I just had extra wire so I figured why not.  

-Wrap the jaws of your pliers with multiple layers of tape to help protect the copper.

-Use different size round objects to help form your heart.

-Don’t cut the wire for the word art before you design it. Just bend away and trim it after.

-Make sure the bottom of the wood isn’t sitting directly on the soil. The moisture will cause it to rod much quicker.

Not what you were looking for ? Try posting a question
Posted 2016-08-26T22:45:59+0000  by Christine_HD_OC Christine_HD_OC
Greetings Christine,

I love, love, love your trellis project!

Copper in the the garden is always such a beautiful accent, I love when it is all new and shinny, but I especially love it when copper takes on a weathered patina, it is timeless! Just like your piece, I can imagine that trellis going through many, many season of holding beautiful, wrapping, vines upright in the most beautiful way! 

Fabulous project!     Maureen
Posted 2016-08-30T11:42:48+0000  by Maureen_HD_BOS
Can' find the redwood on the homedepot site.
Posted 2017-03-21T22:51:11+0000  by Colliedollie

Hello Colliedollie,


Welcome to the community.


I am glad it’s not only me that has trouble finding items on the website. 


With this post and most of the others that we do we try to embed a link to all of the product on the materials list. 


So all you have to do is move your cursor over the item in the materials list, it will become underlined and then click. It will take you to the item on so that you can check it out. 


This was a very fun project to make. I would love to see your project when your done or even better during the process and the once you get it completed. Please upload some pictures here so we can admire all your great work. 


Thanks again for your questions. Let me know if you have any other questions. I would love to help.

Posted 2017-03-24T15:06:41+0000  by Christine_HD_OC
Not what you were looking for ? Try posting a question