Among the “classical wooden espaliers”, belt espaliers can be seen as a special group. It is the matter of special, belt-like 2-bar espaliers, mostly installed between the window rows of the ground-floor and the first floor. With their help, buildings can be structured in a horizontal direction. These espaliers serve almost exclusively wine growing according to horizontal cultivation. Therefore, they can be found on historical buildings in wine-growing areas, for instance in the regions of the Elbe Valley and Saale-Unstrut. We show these pictures in order to give some inspiration for similar projects!
For a maximum grape yield these espalier bands used to be built as broad (high) as possible, leaving almost no space between the vertical window rows. Today, some spacing can be kept for creative reasons. Therefore the ends of the vertical laths should be distanced about 5-10 cm from the upper and lower borders of the window. But even narrower belts are possible – see photos. For the overhang of the laths above and underneath the crossbars (see details), a harmonious measure needs to be determined, as the case arises.
Of course, the vines can be led provisorily to the espalier belt with the help of a string, until they have grown attached to it. But if the area underneath the espalier belt should hold green leaves as well, small guiding espaliers are recommended, consisting of 2, or 3 vertical laths leading to the espalier belt, or operate as its downward extension, respectively. There are similarities to the wire rope systems of the 2000s and 3000s series.
Narrow espalier belts with a broad spacing of the espalier laths tend towards the style of “espaliers with square grid“.