Which bean support works best?

If you’re building your own bean support using bamboo, there are 3 standard styles – the A Frame, the Wigwam and the X Frame. Here are the pros and cons of each… there is no one clear winner, and we’d definitely suggest you go for what you like the look of or feel most comfortable constructing!

Whichever you do choose – push the bamboo canes deeper into the ground than you think is necessary, and tie them tighter than you think is necessary… they will loosen and shift over the course of the summer, so giving them added stability in this way now will make all the difference later!


This is an easy-to-build bean support that involves prodding 8-10 bamboo canes into the soil in a circle and tying them together at the top.


  • Good for smaller gardens
  • Perfect if you are growing beans in large pots
  • Makes a good den for children, especially if you make it into a three quarters circle, leaving an entrance on one side!
  • Looks lovely


  • Picking the beans growing inside the wigwam is tricky
  • An awkward shape in a raised bed plot

A Frame

This is probably the most common type of bamboo support to build for beans. It involves putting 3-5 bamboo canes along 2 parallel rows, then bringing them together at the top and securing with a horizontal bamboo cane.


  • Works well in raised bed plots and traditional plots
  • Beans have good spacing and grow really well
  • Easy to build


  • Reaching the beans growing inside the a-frame is awkward
  • Can be a little unstable on windy days with the weight of the bean plants.

X Frame

This is a slight adaptation on the A-Frame, that basically brings the cross bar lower down, as pictured, and sets the two rows a little further apart..


  • Works well in raised beds and traditional plots
  • Picking is easier
  • Usually gives a better yield due to extra spacing between rows


  • Takes up a bit more space
  • Can be a bit wobbly on windy days
  • You have to train the beans to climb the poles once they get past the cross bar.