Garden arches feature
How-To's & Guides

An Illustrated Guide to Garden Arches and Arbours

Looking for Garden Arch inspiration? Try our illustrated guide to garden arches and arbours, designed with expert horticulturalist and author, Sue Fisher. We cover every style of arch available, as well as advice on climbing plants & flowers suitable for your arch – even the edible varieties.

A guide to Garden Arches

Arches can instantly transform any garden. With an extensive range of designs and sizes in both wood and metal, there's something to suit all tastes and budgets.

Whether they are nestling into leafy foliage or adorning a humdrum patio area, garden arches upgrade any outdoor space. Not only do they add structure, garden arches also introduce hints of colour and perfumed notes – some even grow their own fruit and veg!

So, which style of garden arch will you opt for this summer? How about an open-framed metal arch wreathed in pretty pink roses? Or why not add fresh scents to pathways with a jasmine-festooned wooden arch? Let us help you decide.

Take a look below at how expert horticulturalist and author, Sue Fisher, turns the humble garden arch into a landscaper’s pride and joy. Pick your favourite plant pairing from our flower wheel and try your own look out.

Decorative metal arch

Shapely yet strong, metal arches come in a wide choice of sizes and styles.

Designs with an open framework are great for growing roses, as the thorny stems can be easily trained and tied into place. Those with lattice sides are perfect for climbers with a scrambling habit, like clematis - the aptly named 'gueen of climbers'.

Illustration Concept Garden arches main1

Cottage-garden wooden arch

For an old-fashioned and romantic look, pair a simple arch design with climbers that bear colorful blooms in abundance.

Scented climbers like honeysuckle, jasmine and roses are perfect for arches, as the blooms project their perfume just at the right height.

Illustration Concept cottage garden arch

Contemporary wooden arch

Wood lends itself to a range of arch styles, particularly contemporary designs. You should choose a size in keeping with your garden; for instance, wide or long arches look best in large spaces.

Try paring this design with a bold climber, such as wisteria. Its big leaves and dangling racemes of fragrant flowers complement this style best.

Illustration Concept wooden arch

Rustic arch

An arch hand-crafted from natural materials is both pretty and stylish. And best of all, it only take a few minutes to put in place! To add some bucolic charm to your garden, try one which is made from woven willow and hazel.

This style of arch will only support dainty, lightweight climbers, such as sweet peas. 

Illustration Concept Rustic arch

Wall arch

When there's no room to go outwards, go upwards! Even the smallest space can be transformed with a vertical feature. This clever wall arch design can be easily fixed to a building, wall or fence.

Wreathed in flowers and foliage, these arches turn bare, bleak spots into enchanting openings. They also make a great place to enjoy some shade and privacy.

Illustration Concept wall arch

Arch with integral plants

This style of arch offers the perfect solution to creating height, structure and planting space where soil is scarce.

Why not use this type of arch to grow a combination of vibrant vegetables and edible flowers? Position it close to your home and you could create both a feast for the eyes and the dinner table.

Illustration Concept arch integral plants