trel·​lis | \ˈtre-ləs \

Definition of trellis 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a frame of latticework used as a screen or as a support for climbing plants

2 : a construction (such as a summerhouse) chiefly of latticework

3 : an arrangement that forms or gives the effect of a lattice a trellis of interlacing streams


trellised; trellising; trellises

Definition of trellis (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to provide with a trellis especially : to train (a plant, such as a vine) on a trellis

2 : to cross or interlace on or through : interweave

Illustration of trellis

Illustration of trellis


trellis 1

In the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from trellis


trellised \ˈtre-​ləst \ adjective

Examples of trellis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The couple put grape vines on the trellises that Mr. Jakobsen fashioned from birch trees on the property. J. S. Marcus, WSJ, "The House that Brought Two Retiree Lovers Together," 9 Oct. 2018 The weight of the plant will anchor the trellis to the ground. Doug Hall, Good Housekeeping, "The 4 Best Ways to Support Your Tomato Plants," 19 July 2018 Long, slender light green fruits are spineless and almost always curved, unless grown on a trellis and harvested when 12 inches long. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Growing Crisp Cucumbers," 12 July 2018 Karl Lagerfeld had recreated one in the confines of the Grand Palais, down to the trellises twined with climbing roses and urns spilling blooms. Vanessa Friedman, New York Times, "At Couture, Lofty Traditions Face the New Swiftness of Fury," 26 Jan. 2018 Hurry to prune grape vines and train them to an arbor or trellis. Tom Maccubbin,, "April in the garden," 31 Mar. 2018 If space is limited, put up a trellis for vertical support. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "How To Grow Loads Of Delicious Zucchini–The Most Versatile Garden Veggie Ever," 12 June 2017 Dig a hole at least twice as deep and wide as the pot or root ball of your plant within a few inches of your trellis or other support. Jean Nick, Good Housekeeping, "How To Grow Clematis," 17 Mar. 2017 The 2018 Scrambler 1100 also does not showcase Ducati’s signature trellis frame. Fortune, "Is the Bigger, Beefier Ducati Scrambler 1100 the One for You?," 27 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Are there any kinds that do not need to be trellised? Dan Gill,, "What type of sweet peas to plant and when to plant them in South Louisiana," 29 Apr. 2018 Less vigorous varieties, such as many of the large-flowered hybrids can be allowed to climb through shrubs or small trees in the flower garden (with a little guidance), instead of being trellised, or even to wander over the ground as a ground cover. Jean Nick, Good Housekeeping, "How To Grow Clematis," 17 Mar. 2017 For years, some farmers have turned to changing how grapes are trellised to grow more per vine and have invested in new technology to automate picking and pruning to drive down labor costs. Melanie Grayce West, WSJ, "N.Y. Grape Growers, Squeezed by Low Demand, Look Beyond Juice," 30 Apr. 2018 There’s a woodlands garden, a perennial herbaceous border and a vegetable garden with handmade wattle fencing and trellised supports. Cynthia Billhartz Gregorian, kansascity, "Here’s your chance to tour 5 lush Mission Hills & Fairway private gardens," 6 May 2017 At one point, Nederend feared her vines would need to be cut down to the ground and re-trellised this spring — meaning no crop in 2017 but a return for 2018 and beyond. Eric Degerman, idahostatesman, "Big news for Gem State travelers, winemakers: Idaho Wines fly free on two airlines," 9 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trellis.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of trellis


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for trellis


Middle English trelis, from Anglo-French treleis, from Old French treille arbor, from Latin trichila summerhouse

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about trellis

Statistics for trellis

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for trellis

The first known use of trellis was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for trellis



English Language Learners Definition of trellis

: a frame with long pieces of wood that cross each other that is used as a support for climbing plants


trel·​lis | \ˈtre-ləs \

Kids Definition of trellis

: a frame of lattice used especially as a screen or a support for climbing plants

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on trellis

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with trellis

Spanish Central: Translation of trellis

Nglish: Translation of trellis for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about trellis

Comments on trellis

What made you want to look up trellis? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a typical or ideal example

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!