Whether you have a lot of space for gardening or are very limited, one way of improving your growing area is to go vertical. There are many reasons why vertical gardening is beneficial and why it is a great strategy to incorporate into your overall plan.

Although you can use just about anything that is somewhat sturdy as a trellis (I’ve seen people plant corn to use their stalks as a trellis for a neighboring crop), ideally, a trellis is not supposed to be able to bend or give in any way.

The job of a trellis is to be a very sturdy, solid structure that is rigid and dependable. It is not flimsy. It does not sway in the wind or break under the heavy weight of a full-bearing vine. They are typically permanent and unchanging.

Care and thought must go into the building of a trellis, so that it is well anchored and secure. Many people will set posts in concrete or weld panels to angle iron to achieve the type of sturdiness that is desired. If you would like to incorporate trellises into your gardening efforts this year, here are a few things to consider:

Eye appeal
Based on my theory of making things both beautiful and edible, vertical gardening is a win-win! If you will take the time to see your growing area as a living canvas and place your trellises accordingly, once they are covered in vines your garden can become a masterpiece.  You will not only see your structures as functional pieces of equipment but also as some of the most beautiful areas in your garden. Trellises allow us to not only landscape but to foodscape!

Ease of gardening
If you are looking for a way to stay off of your knees and reduce back-breaking work then vertical growing is your solution. By training your plants to grow upwards instead of sprawling all over the ground, you will be able to harvest the fruit that they produce by standing upright. It doesn’t take much effort to get your vines to cling to a sturdy structure because they naturally tend to do so. Picking hanging fruit is much easier than turning over leaves and hunting for produce on the ground, and since the fruit is off of the ground, it is cleaner.

Maximizing space
Many people simply do not have a yard to work in. Patio and balcony gardeners can successfully grow a tremendous amount of food by simply using vertical gardening techniques. Instead of creating arches, explore the idea of using ladder-shaped trellises. They can be wide to cover a wall or narrow to fit in a container. Do not be deceived into believing that just because you don’t have a yard that you cannot grow your own food. Some of the most beautiful and productive gardens that I’ve ever seen are in very small spaces.

Lifting vining plants up off of the ground and reducing direct contact between plant foliage from soil and water results in healthier plants and less pressure from pests and diseases. When vines are allowed to have plenty of surface space and air circulation they thrive. Upright, their blooms attract many pollinators and well-taken care of vining plants (such as cucumbers or squash) usually produce a significant amount of food and have less problems.

Just like a gardener gives a vine a trellis on which to establish itself, God gives us His promises. They are not flimsy suggestions or weak words. God’s promises are the strong, sturdy and dependable framework of His Word. They do not bend or break. They are permanent and unchanging.

We are able to use His promises to anchor our prayer life and securely establish ourselves in this world. They allow us to not only experience eternal life but abundant life. They make our lives beautiful and easier and allow us to maximize our abilities and be overall healthier people. We are able to cling to His promises and bear much fruit.

For as many as the promises of God are, in Him they are yes; therefore through Him also is our Amen to the glory of God through us” (2 Cor. 1:20).