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Support for Tomatoes

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Support for Tomatoes

Post  jewlz2121 on Wed Apr 03, 2013 9:14 pm

What is your favorite way to support tomatoes? We had planned on making cages with wire mesh. But I've seen lots of pictures here where there is just a flat panel of mesh instead of a cage. I guess I never thought just support on one side would be enough? I don't want to spend a lot of time making cages if there is an easier way. Any help would be much appreciated!
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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  Goosegirl on Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:59 am

In the ANSFG book Mel gives instructions for a simple trellis of conduit and netting with rebar stakes to hold it in place. I made those and have used them for 2 years with great success. I only have the trellises placed on the northern edge of each of my boxes. The tomato plants are very easy to weave into the netting as they grow. No more staking or caging for me!

GG
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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  jewlz2121 on Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:50 am

Thanks! I'm eagerly awaiting the new book in the mail. Hopefully it hurries so I can avoid making a gazillion cages!
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How do you compare?

Post  didomach on Thu Apr 04, 2013 11:23 am

I found Hoggar's interesting on http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t14310p15-best-and-worst-trellis-netting (page 2), and was wanting to make it, since we go through at least 3 pounds of tomatoes a week. Is the wire one Mel recommends suitable for only 4 plants? How does it compare, what could be the pros/cons of such a structure?
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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  jercarol on Wed Apr 10, 2013 4:29 pm

I put fence post on each side of box and strung 8x8 box wire between them using plastic zip ties.......works great and gives you lots of room to maneuver your hands in and out of the wire.

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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  Janas on Thu Apr 11, 2013 4:45 pm

My favorite tomato support is to plant them at the base of arbors and weave the branches between the arbor's framework. It's easy, the arbors stay out all winter (good for my lazy streak!), strong and tall enough for my indeterminate tomatoes. This is my first season in my condo with square foot gardening, and I brought the arbors with me from my old house and installed them on the north end of my raised beds so they arch over the path between the beds. That way I can walk under the arbor to harvest the tomatoes. It costs a little more than some of the clever do-it-yourself arrangements others use, but I'm not able to manage building much so I rely on this method and it's worked well for me.

My next favorite method is using heavy compostable garden twine tied at the top to a tall support of whatever type you have with the bottom tied to a stake. As the plants grow, wrap the tomatoes up around the twine. At the end of the growing season, it's easy to cut down the twine and compost it and the plant together. One year I tried a plastic net for tomatoes and it was hard to pull the plants of the net to compost them at the end of the season, so for me the compostable twine works better.
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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  bwaynef on Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:47 pm

@jercarol wrote:I put fence post on each side of box and strung 8x8 box wire between them using plastic zip ties.......works great and gives you lots of room to maneuver your hands in and out of the wire.

Do the plastic zip ties not break down in the sun?
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needs to be moveable and reusable

Post  hillcountryhick on Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:52 pm

Velcro strips cut to 8 inches long is the best. it lasts for years. other stuff like old panty hose, zip ties , specialized plant clips etc is either ugly or too permanent to deal with. Green Velcro stuff is the best overall. Just sayin'...... carrot
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Re: Support for Tomatoes

Post  camprn on Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:39 pm

Just an FYI, there are multiple previous threads with a lot more ideas on this subject.

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