The 10 Best Garden Arbors
This wiki has been updated 25 times since it was first published in June of 2016. Looking to add the finishing touch to your beautifully landscaped garden or backyard? These arbors lend an elegant look to any outdoor display, and are the perfect place for hanging potted plants and supporting creeping vines. As an added bonus, if you ever host an outdoor wedding or event, any of these arches will make for a great backdrop for photos of family and friends. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
April 21, 2020:
During this round of updates, the Greenstone Fiarchild, Sunjoy Villow, Plow & Health Motebello, Achla Designs ARB-27 and Outour Elegant all needed to be removed due to availability issues, effectively eliminating half of our previous selections. Some of our new additions this time around include the Panacea Products Arched Top 89096 – a gated model that would pair nicely with wrought-iron fencing, the Belhan Metal Tunnel – a budget-friendly model that makes a great backdrop for outdoor-wedding photo shoots, and the Outour French Style Birdcage – which presents a nice way to define a special space in your yard for meditation or morning coffees.
A few things to stay on top of for this category:
Installation: The selections we ranked all require some varying level of assembly, but it should also be noted that certain models require extra measures to be taken to make sure they stay secured to the ground. While the Panacea Garden Arbor has stakes integrated into its design, The Belhan Metal Tunnel and Panacea Products Arched Top 89096 both come with stakes to help secure them. The Arched Top 89096 also has feet with pilot holes, which helps lend it to being easily bolted down to wooden decking, if that suits your needs. Wooden models – like the Bosmere Rowlinson Victoria that weighs 124 pounds – will often be heavy enough to stand up unsupported, but screwing them down to wooden decking, if the opportunity is present, still isn’t the worst idea, in case of high winds.
Maintenance: For the most part, all the arbors we’ve ranked are relatively low maintenance. Pressure-treated models like the Bosmere Rowlinson Victoria can easily be painted or stained, if that’s the look you like, but that will lead to a need for recoating years down the road, and they should hold up well to weather regardless. Even in the absence of staining, the Rowlinson Victoria is backed by a 15-year rot-free guarantee.
Metal models like the Outsunny Decorative and the Belhan Metal Tunnel are often powder-coated or finished with epoxy, to help prevent corrosion, but repainting them down the line might be advisable, if you’re looking to optimize longevity. Vinyl options like the Dura-Trel Wellington and New England Vienna often claim to be maintenance free, and indeed they should be – although the occasional wipe down with a wet cloth, or spray down with a hose, can go a long way to helping maintain that pristine white look.
Multifunctionality: In addition to looking great while helping you define an outdoor space, some the options we ranked go above and beyond the standard call of duty for a garden arbor. The Panacea Garden Arbor has built-in accommodations for a bird bath and feeding station, and the Bosmere Rowlinson Victoria provides shade for a nice 45-inch bench that looks just about right for some reading in the garden. The Panacea Products Arched Top 89096 doubles as a gate, but it should be noted that its bars are too far apart to safely contain small dogs, and its latch is quite problematic.
Trellis Structures If you can't find a mass-produced model that meets your expectations, you might want to consider having a piece custom built. This Massachusetts-based company specializes in woodworking, and offers 25 styles of arbor, all of which can be built in custom widths and with gates – if one is desired. They ship nationally, and also build trellises and pergolas, in case you're interested in commissioning some matching pieces for your yard. trellisstructures.com
Finelli Ironworks This award-winning Ohio company, with roots in the Italian blacksmithing tradition, designs and builds custom iron pieces, including garden arbors. They'll travel across country, and even to Canada, to complete installations, and have shipped their work as far as the Bahamas. finelliironworks.com