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Mezuzah on a trellis with a gate


Rabbi David Sperling

Tammuz 12, 5779
Does a garden trellis with a gate (door to the garden) require a mezuzah? It separates the garden from the sidewalk.
Shalom, Thank you for your question. Without seeing a picture it is hard to get a clear grasp of the situation – but it sounds like you have a trellis fence between the sidewalk and your garden, that has a gate in it. You are correct to ask if such a gate needs a mezzuzah – as we do say in Shema “and all your gateways”. The law will depend on a few factors. Firstly, the gate will need to have doorposts and a lintel to be obligated with a mezzuzah. If there is no horizontal lintel surrounding the door (as in many garden gates) one does not put up a mezzuzah. Secondly, the garden needs to have a the fence surround it on all sides. If the garden only has a fence in the front, but the sides are open, then it does not need a mezzuzah. Thirdly, the door in the fence is the door to the garden that leads to the house. If it is a separate garden that has no dwelling in it (or no entrance from the garden to the house), then the law is more complicated – and in many cases a mezzuzah is afixed with no blessing. If your case meets these three requirements, then you should afix the mezzuzah with a blessing on the right hand side as you enter from the street. Blessings.
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