I've had flower gardens for many years, and I'm always looking for ways to introduce new plants into existing gardens. My son has been brewing beer for the past few years, and he grows hops in his backyard. Since hops produce beautiful flowers and are fast climbers (20-25 feet in a growing season), I decided to add them to my gardens, too, but I had to build something for them to climb on that also fit in well with the other flowers in the garden.
Building this pyramid hops tower takes about 10 minutes to construct and costs roughly $40.00. The tower can be used for any flowers or vegetables that love to climb.
An added bonus for growing hops is that now I have hops to share with my son and other friends who are home brewers.
Step 1: Materials Needed
Here's the list of materials needed to build the pyramid hops tower (you can buy these items at most hardware stores and garden centers):
- 6 ft. fan trellises, wood or composite plastic (3 each) Note: I am growing hops mainly as a focal point in the flower garden. Folks who are growing hops for home brewing should build a tower that is 12 feet high or taller.
- 9 in. plastic wire ties (9 each)
- 6 in. terra cotta or plastic flower pot
- paint (optional)
It's easier to paint both sides of the trellises before assembling the pyramid, but the pyramid can also be painted after it has been built.
Step 2: Fasten 2 Trellises Together
With the wide ends of the trellises down, hold the narrow ends of 2 trellises upright and join them tightly together with a wire tie where they meet, making sure that the wire tie is above the horizontal pieces, not below (see photo).
Continue joining the 2 trellises together with wire ties for the next 2 sections, just above each horizontal piece of wood or plastic. Trim excess from the end of the wire tie after you pull it tightly to join the trellises. A wire tie can be added above the fourth (last) horizontal piece, but it isn't necessary because this section will be at ground level when it is in the garden.
Step 3: Join the 3rd Trellis Section
After the first 2 trellises have been joined together, add the 3rd trellis and continue to fasten at each of the 3 horizontal pieces on both the left and right sides. Congratulations -- You have just made a free-standing pyramid tower!
Step 4: Topping It Off!
For a bit of added decoration, finish off the top of the pyramid with a terra cotta or plastic pot, painted in the same color as the trellis sections or with an accent color.
Step 5: Hops Tower From Spring Through Summer
Find the location that works best in the garden for the tower and climbing plants, and press the tower legs down into the ground to hold it in place. Hops can grow up to 1-1/2 feet each day, grow best in full sun, and must be supported off the ground to prevent disease and for proper growth of the vines. The plants need lots of water and a nutrient-rich soil, so early in the spring, I add composted soil around each hops plant, and at least once a week I water the garden if we don't get an inch or two of rain.
My trellis is painted brown so that it blends into the garden. There are 3 Cascade hops rhizomes planted around the outer edge of the pyramid, one rhizome centered on each trellis section. Now in their 3rd growing season, this year the hops grew more than twice the height of the tower and are just about ready to harvest.