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Make a Rose Arch

Add height and color to your garden with a classic wood arch, built from a kit and framed with climbing roses and clematis.

Excerpted from How to Grow Practically Everything
wooden garden arch planted with vigerous climbersHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010 This arch is planted with 'Seagull' rose, Clematis armandii and golden hop.

When to Start: Spring to fall
At Its Best: Spring to summer
Time to Complete: 1 day

Materials Needed:

  • rose arch kit
  • tape measure
  • galvanized screws
  • electric screwdriver
  • spade
  • broken bricks, rocks, etc.
  • level
  • dry ready-mix concrete

Lay Out the Pieces

Lay out all the pieces in the kit on the ground. Starting with the roof of the arch, align the short horizontal pieces so that they slot into the two long crossbeams that make up the roof. Use a tape measure to check that they are evenly spaced.

lay out all pieces in rose arch kitHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Join the Sections

Using galvanized screws and an electric screwdriver, join the horizontal pieces to the beams. Then, attach the two vertical sides of the arch onto the roof, as directed by the kit instructions. The trellis sides in this arch came in two complete sections that are slotted into the roof.

join sections of wooden rose archHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Dig Out Footings

To secure the arch in the ground, stand it in its final site, and mark out the positions of the four vertical legs. Dig holes for the legs, 18 inches deep and 12 inches wide. Add a 2-inch layer of rocks or broken bricks to the base of each hole.

add hard core to base of each footingHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Position the Arch

Tamp down the rocks with a pole. With help, lift the arch and lower its legs into the holes. Make sure each leg is standing on the base, and add or remove material until all four are solidly supported.

position rose arch into prepared holesHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Check the Uprights

Make sure that all the verticals are correctly aligned, and that the horizontal pieces are level. If necessary, maneuver the arch until it's perfectly upright; when you're satisfied that it is, pack more rocks around the legs.

check all uprights of rose arch for levelHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Mortar in the Legs

Pour the ready-mix concrete into each hole, up to ground level, ensuring that it completely surrounds the legs. Slowly add water to the holes to soak the concrete, and allow it to dry and harden for a day or two. Now stain the arch in your chosen color and plant around it.

mortar in legs of rose archHow To Grow Practically Everything ©Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

Excerpted from How to Grow Practically Everything

© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2010

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