Home How-To Build a Wattle for Your Pole Beans

Build a Wattle for Your Pole Beans

Build a Wattle for Your Pole Beans

Our friend Jack and his structurally-sound beanstalk are the things of which fairy tales are made. In my garden, a goldfinch can bring down a pole bean just by considering it as a pleasant and potential perch. Like everyone, poles beans need all the support they can get. Here’s how I do it: the modified wattle (not to be confused with the dance from the 70s).

wattle for your pole beans

Early in the season pole beans have a place to grow.

And when it comes to elaborate structures, I say less is more and besides I need to be able to rototill it into the ground next spring. As with most of my projects and thrifty nature, I ask, “What can I use that I already have?” The answer: tree shoots or saplings. Yep, I’ve got sticks for days.  After cutting down some young maples, the stump or stool sends up shoots; it’s a practice called coppicing, but any unbranched stick will do.  My hands-down favorite green bean to plant is Fortex. It’s french filet type that never gets stringy and has amazing flavor and vigor; at least in the Pacific Northwest.

How to Build a Wattle (or Trellis) for Your Pole Beans

Materials: 7-8 ft sticks, some sturdy, some more flexible

  1. Firmly push strong sticks into ground until secure.
  2. Space 6-8 inches apart and repeat down the row’s length
  3. When vertical sticks are in, start to weave weaker branches horizontally
  4. Alternate weaving the branches in and out of the vertical sticks
  5. Repeat but the next row weave out and in.
  6. Repeat until you have about 6-8 inches of sturdy weave.
  7. Plant your bean seeds at the base of each vertical pole.

woven bean pole panel wattle

A wattle is simply branches woven as a fence.

bean pole wattle fence scarlett runner pole beans in bloom

Strong enough for a flock of goldfinch and mess of beans.


  1. You are such a Renaissance man, what with the blogging, the farming, the cooking, the jam making, the wattling, the croc wearing– I’m very impressed.


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