UPDATED: December 2022NEWS
Garden Arch Considerations
Trees and shrubs can of course be used to add height and shape to a garden, but a garden arch can break up a line of trees and add extra interest to your outdoor space, or provide a fragrant, rose covered doorway between two areas.
Even in a small garden, a suitable metal or wooden archway can really alter the look - in a good way or a bad way so be mindful of this. You don't want too many structures to clutter up a small space.
In longer gardens, they can be used to divide separate areas while in narrow gardens, use a series of arches to take the visitor on a journey.
You obviously need to make sure that the arch is tall enough for people to comfortably walk through. You should also bear in mind the sort of climbing plants if any, that you plant to grow on the arch. Over time these may creep into head space forcing your visitors to duck.
It is desirable that for a garden arch designed to be walked through, if possible try and make it wide enough for two people to use it side by side. Here at the garden arch website, we always list the height and width of all arches so that you can easily check the suitability for your garden.
It is important to realise that the total width of the arch will often be much greater than the width you can walk through. This is particularly true of timber arches with flat tops that overhang.
If you are working with a very small space that has a wall on one side, then consider a wall arch. These "half-arches" are planted in the ground on one side, and fixed to the wall on the other. A great choice to add some interest to an alleyway or narrow pathway. Read More about wall arches.
For wooden garden arches, you should look for those which are pressure treated. This will ensure the longevity of the arch. You may need to retreat in future years to keep the arch looking good and keeping rot at bay. Most factory pressure treated arches are guaranteed for a number of years - up to 15 in some cases.
When it comes to deciding which plant to train around your arch, obvious choices are roses, clematis and honeysuckle to add colour and fragrance to your walkway. We've detailed many more climbing plants here,- you can even grow kiwi fruit!
Quick Growing Cover
If you are installing a new arch and want a 'quick fix' in terms of climbing plants consider fast growing annuals such as sweet peas, black eyed Susan or Spanish Flag. You could also consider growing runner beans. For roses, choose a rambler variety as they have more flexible stems than climbing roses.
Watch the Weight
Ensure that the garden arch you purchase will be suitable for the weight of the flower you plant to grow on it. Some of the more lightweight metal arches are very decorative with ornate patterns, but are not really strong enough for weighty plants. For this situation, a sturdy wooden archway with trellis panel sides and top will be best.