Lattice Trellises for Patios

If you want to use lattice screen for your outdoor architecture then go with vinyl versions. You can stick with white versions that will look classic. While that makes it easier to take care of than traditional painted wood versions, it isn’t as easy to paint a PVC material. On the other hand, PVC also has more of a finished appearance without a lot of rough edges. That is on reason why it is better for screens and it’s also lighter weight than wood panels. Some brands like Acurio even come with a 12 year warranty and you probably can’t find the same thing when buying traditional woodwork.

The only negative to using PVC in this manner is that you need to choose the right color to begin with. That usually isn’t a problem with a wood trellis as the wood tones are going to naturally look good in such an application. But it only takes a coat of paint to change those options. Plus, usually it will be covered by plants so it won’t really matter.

If you want a trellis or latticework that gives you privacy or creates more of an enclosed patio effect then color will be more of an important consideration. I’d rather see trellis designs and latticework that is the same color as your pergola. Also pay attention to your existing structure and let that dictate the rest of your design.

Sometimes though you can just let the plants do most of the work. Then you can use just about any material and it will end up looking great!

Flowering Trees build their own Trellis

Sometimes it's best to just let Nature do it's thing

Various Trellis Designs

A basic pergola design uses a slat style in a stained or painted wood. This has a retro feel to it but the latticework can take it into almost any other direction. Install black square vinyl panels for a Zen garden. If you have cement and a lot of rocks then just adding in short lattice trellises can give it a Japanese shoji screen feeling.

You can also install these on your exterior siding in the place of outdoor artwork. These pieces have such intricate fretwork that I love to see them without any plants on them. Luckily, the vinyl material still keeps the price down. In modern gardens you won’t see as many plants but you will see bigger architectural details.

The biggest advantage to choosing plastic panels is that it’s so easy to take care of. You can also get different finishes that aren’t as easy to find with paint. I’ve found gray versions that almost have a sheen to them. It mimics stainless steel at a much cheaper price tag and it won’t weather over time. Usually silver paint is the most difficult color to pull off successfully because it’s never shiny enough. These screens with be a much closer approximation.

Also, you should note that the sheen is going to be different on these items which is how you’ll instantly be able to spot it as not being a wood tone. It will be shinier than most painted versions. So embrace this and instead find faux metal versions because you won’t be able to fool the eye into thinking that it’s a wood trellis to begin with.

A vinyl panel also has the advantage of not warping. This could be a big headache if you’re using a wood panel in your actual construction and it warps over time. Instead, this is sturdy enough to also use in your actual patio area.

This is even a much cheaper way to replicate wrought iron. Black panels with scroll work mimic this pretty effectively and you won’t have to worry about it rusting. Just one panel will usually be 32 inches by 48 inches and might cost under $30. If you were trying to get durable outdoor artwork in the same size it would probably cost several hundred dollars.

Adding Fabric into the Mix

The last innovative use for this is actually as a backdrop. You could place this in the back of an arbor or archway. It’s cheaper than fabric and creates an unusual texture for any wedding day photos. Plus, these panels are usually available in white too and you can always find somewhere to use it in your yard after your event is over with.

Changing the color or style of your siding is expensive. I’ve personally painted siding all summer long and it was one of the worst summers I’ve ever had. Instead, use these vinyl decor panels to add a theme to your patio. It’s a way to change the color of your exterior without all of the work. Sure, the color will still show through all of the scrollwork but I usually find that this mimics fabric or lace.

A trellis isn’t just for plants anymore. It’s a way to integrate new architecture or artwork into your outdoor area. With the new vinyl materials that are available it’s so much easier to maintain so you can use it all over your yard.

Vines Climbing up the corner of a Screenhouse

Integrating a Pergola and Screenhouse with Climbing Vines