Square Foot Gardening Forum

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing December 2016
by Kelejan Today at 12:53 am

» Gardening in Central Pennsylvania
by Scorpio Rising Today at 12:35 am

» Winter Reading, Anyone?
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 9:02 pm

» Anyone out there tried crosne tubers?
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 8:49 pm

» Sprouted Onion Question
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 8:45 pm

» N&C Midwest: December 2016
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 7:37 pm

» California's Drought
by sanderson Yesterday at 6:11 pm

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by sanderson Yesterday at 6:07 pm

» 2016 SFG in Brooks, Ga
by sanderson Yesterday at 6:00 pm

» Greenhouse dreams
by sanderson Yesterday at 5:58 pm

» New England, December 2016
by CapeCoddess Yesterday at 5:49 pm

» What are you eating from your garden today?
by plantoid Yesterday at 5:47 pm

» CHALLENGE - Smallest possible footprint
by BeetlesPerSqFt Yesterday at 5:05 pm

» Butterfly Junction
by countrynaturals Yesterday at 4:56 pm

» 1,000 worms on their way....
by llama momma Yesterday at 2:16 pm

» Garbanzo (Chickpeas, Cicer arietinum) and Kidney Beans
by llama momma Yesterday at 1:59 pm

» Tomato Tuesday 2016
by Ginger Blue Yesterday at 1:57 pm

» New Member
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 7:29 am

» 1st Seed Catalog Arrived :)
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 7:24 am

» Calcium and Magnesium Deficiency
by sanderson Yesterday at 2:14 am

» Happy Birthday!!
by Scorpio Rising 12/9/2016, 9:29 pm

» Facebook - SFG Foundation postings
by sanderson 12/9/2016, 12:32 pm

» Mid-South: December 2016
by AtlantaMarie 12/9/2016, 7:40 am

» Second Year SFG in Canada
by sanderson 12/9/2016, 4:16 am

» TrolleyDriver's Compost Thermometer
by trolleydriver 12/8/2016, 5:21 pm

» Holy snow Batman!
by donnainzone5 12/8/2016, 12:13 pm

» Garlic: Freeze, thaw, and heave
by camprn 12/8/2016, 7:05 am

» GF Collard Greens, Kale Recipes
by BeetlesPerSqFt 12/7/2016, 12:49 pm

» Bon fires on the Levee
by Cajun Cappy 12/6/2016, 12:17 pm

» Mid-Atl - Dec 2016 - Seed Catalog ?
by Scorpio Rising 12/5/2016, 10:24 pm

Google

Search SFG Forum

Tomato cages - size and design

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Tomato cages - size and design

Post  playinthedirt on 1/23/2015, 9:15 pm

Hello all,

I would  like your thoughts on tomato cages.  I'm guessing I will have to construct some since what I've seen so far at the garden centers are too short, too flimsy, etc.  

You should know that I constructed my raised bed prior to discovering the SFG concept.  It is in the shape of a capital 'E' in order to take best advantage of the available space.  I plan to put my tomatoes in the bottom leg of the 'E' which is about 80" x 40".

I made a cage this afternoon out of 2 x 2 and 1 x 2 lumber.  When it's in the ground, it will be 5' tall and 16" square.  It is sturdy for sure but I wonder if it needs to be that big on the sides ... maybe 12" per side would be adequate.  What other options are out there.

This is my first attempt at asking for help.  Hope I've followed protocol.  If not, I'd appreciate someone filling me in on what I did wrong.

playinthedirt

Posts : 14
Join date : 2015-01-12
Location : Florida Gulf Coast (Pensacola)

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  sanderson on 1/23/2015, 10:21 pm

Can you post a photo?  I wish there was a topic/thread with nothing but photos of tomato support systems.  It seems there are lots of good ideas but they get buried in other topics.

Can you folks post a photo of your different support systems? Camp uses the French weave method. Someone else (Kay?) grows tomatoes in 5-gallon buckets set in a row with a nifty PVC support stand in each bucket.

Early Girl in large pot with cage:
Determinant Roma pruned to single main stem when short, then triple stems when taller.  Long pieces of plastic stretchy tape was tied to overhead  horizontal board and dropped down to each stem.

sanderson

Forum Administrator

Female Posts : 12308
Join date : 2013-04-21
Age : 68
Location : Fresno CA Zone 8-9

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  yolos on 1/23/2015, 10:53 pm

I have tried all different types.  The cages below are Texas Tomato cages.  The texas tomato cages are not really suited to most square foot gardens because they are so large (mine are 24" diameter and about 8' tall) and quite pricey.  But they sure work nice. 
 


I have also tried hanging a cord down from above and wrapping it around the tomato plant as it grows taller, but that takes a little time keeping it suckered and wraped.

 
I have also used the Florida Weave but that takes a little more time keeping the tomatoes corralled.


And smaller cages which I don't like for indeterminate tomatoes because they are not tall or sturdy enough.


And I have also tried using nylon netting beside the tomatoes.  Too much work keeping things tidy.  I don't know how you get the front branches tied into the netting which is in the back.  I guess you have to prune the ones growing out in the front.  This was the end of the season and almost everything is dead or dying. 

yolos

Female Posts : 2861
Join date : 2011-11-20
Age : 66
Location : Brooks, Ga Zone 7B/8A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  Turan on 1/23/2015, 11:00 pm

Well, this shows 3 ways I do it. 1) A bent round of mesh fencing for the rambunctious cherry tomato that is not pruned. 2) Square folding cages that I now mostly use for cucumbers etc but also have done great for tomatoes if short enough.  String tied to over head  support that I wind the plant up during the season, this requires a bit of pruning but not so much as to bother me.  I try to keep each plant to 2 leaders.  I also use the standard 3 legged tomato cages for small stuff, including sometimes bush tomatoes.


____________________________

Find more about Weather in Belgrade, MT
Click for weather forecast

Turan

Female Posts : 1999
Join date : 2012-03-29
Location : Gallatin Valley, Montana, Intermountain zone 4

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Tomato cages - size and design

Post  playinthedirt on 1/24/2015, 9:00 am

Thanks for the ideas and photos.  I'll send a photo of my situation when there is something to photograph.

Couple more questions: 

how big in diameter should the cage be?  I've made one so far that is 16" square.  Could I get by with a smaller size?  It looks huge now with nothing growing in it but it may be too small in a couple of months. 

I see where several people have mentioned pruning their plants so that a single stem comes out of the ground and then 3-4 side shoots are allowed to grow as the plant grows.  Is this SOP?

playinthedirt

Posts : 14
Join date : 2015-01-12
Location : Florida Gulf Coast (Pensacola)

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  jimmy cee on 1/24/2015, 9:15 am

I tend not to be as concerned about being pretty as others do ( wife )
Stainless steel and I have become friends over the years since I have had access to them  for quite some time.
Before SFG I was able to drive stakes deep into the ground, that would support any tomatos once tied, however since there are now restrictions as to how deep I can go I go down as deep as I can without going through the weed barrier, then support the structure on the top and anchor to a solid post (which I have everywhere)
The round pieces seen on the containers can be made square also, actually they are able to be made to fit anywhere, ANYSIZE,
just cut and fit from the roll..





As mentioned any size needed may be done

jimmy cee

Certified SFG Instructor

Male Posts : 1848
Join date : 2013-02-16
Age : 81
Location : Indiana PA....zone 5

View user profile http://www.jcjigs.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  has55 on 1/24/2015, 10:27 am

wow, great pictures and wonderful ideas. I used the bird netting technique. I used tomatoes clamps. I just let the plants grow tall enough to get to the netting, then clamped it. I have two types of clamps, small and large, but I'm just showing the small ones. these work wonderfully. I picked off the suckers and when the limbs get large or long enough I just clamped it and it will guide itself toward the direction I clamped and weaved it. 
I used reinforcement concrete wires for the peppers plant. the tomatoes plants would overwhelmed these even at 8 ft tall.


 


has55

Posts : 1360
Join date : 2012-05-10
Location : Denton, tx

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  Turan on 1/24/2015, 11:39 am

As to spacing~
Every time I try close spacings like 12-16" I regret it.   Closer means strict pruning and harder to reach around/through etc.  You can grow fast maturing greens/radishes/ maybe even broccoli between where the tomatoes will/are planted.  Then pull them out as they finsih and the tomatoes need the room.  Some plants like living in the tomatoes shade,  I hear carrots do.

____________________________

Find more about Weather in Belgrade, MT
Click for weather forecast

Turan

Female Posts : 1999
Join date : 2012-03-29
Location : Gallatin Valley, Montana, Intermountain zone 4

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  has55 on 1/25/2015, 4:54 am

@Turan wrote:As to spacing~
Every time I try close spacings like 12-16" I regret it.   Closer means strict pruning and harder to reach around/through etc.  You can grow fast maturing greens/radishes/ maybe even broccoli between where the tomatoes will/are planted.  Then pull them out as they finsih and the tomatoes need the room.  Some plants like living in the tomatoes shade,  I hear carrots do.

good idea, turan

has55

Posts : 1360
Join date : 2012-05-10
Location : Denton, tx

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  llama momma on 1/25/2015, 8:04 am

playinthe dirt

How about another idea. If you get around to indeterminate maters these are eight foot tall cattle panels.  Got six of these so far.  I like them a lot.  Just weave the plants in and out and prune well.  There is one foot spacing between the four plants.  



 

llama momma

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4648
Join date : 2010-08-20
Age : 59
Location : Central Ohio zone 6a

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  camprn on 1/25/2015, 9:19 am

I use the Florida weave method.

____________________________

40 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 13984
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 54
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  has55 on 1/25/2015, 10:29 am

@camprn wrote:I use the Florida weave method.
camprn, would you happen to have any pictures?

has55

Posts : 1360
Join date : 2012-05-10
Location : Denton, tx

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  camprn on 1/25/2015, 11:06 am

@has55 wrote:
@camprn wrote:I use the Florida weave method.
camprn, would you happen to have any pictures?








____________________________

40 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books

Outlander is outstanding!


camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 13984
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 54
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  has55 on 1/26/2015, 12:21 am

Thank you camprn. awesome pictures. explains alot.

has55

Posts : 1360
Join date : 2012-05-10
Location : Denton, tx

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Tomato cages - size and design

Post  Sponsored content Today at 3:03 am


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum