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Long trellises

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Long trellises

Post  violentlyserene on 3/29/2015, 5:12 pm

My garden plans have ended up with a long more trellised plants than i originally anticipated and even more in future years if this works out. The area i have for the garden is next to my house and faces south. I can go 20 ft long and go out 5-6 ft. What kind of set up is going to work best here? The majority of the trellised plants will be tomatoes and maybe pole beans but I'd like a couple melons (sugar baby watermelons and cantaloupe) and pumpkin if i can get a good trellis for them. 

My original plan was going to be two 4x4 beds with the back four of each trellised using the electrical conduit trellis in the book but the count is now at 5 tomato squares, a cucumber square, watermelon, maybe cantaloupe, and pumpkin (though i wasn't orginally going to trellis this until future years). In addition, i have carrots, peas, green peppers,broccoli, and bush beans (which will preferably be pole beans next year). We're two weeks past the LFD at this point so I really need to get this sorted out and built but my head is spinning trying to think through everything.

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Re: Long trellises

Post  AtlantaMarie on 3/29/2015, 7:43 pm

I'd have to see some pics to get a clear idea of what you're dealing with against the house.  But I can tell you that you'll need room to get behind the trellising to pick...
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Re: Long trellises

Post  violentlyserene on 3/30/2015, 1:05 am

It wouldn't be against the house, just close to it with a couple feet between the house and trellis so there's room to get behind when needed. I'm mostly concerned that electrical conduit or pvc won't be strong enough for lengths longer than 4ft or for melons and pumpkins.

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Re: Long trellises

Post  sanderson on 3/30/2015, 5:48 am

VS, Don't make the same mistake I did and have the beds under any part of the roof overhang! Embarassed I had to move them because of the rain.

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Re: Long trellises

Post  jimmy cee on 3/30/2015, 8:48 am

Carefully thought through this.....4 inch square treated posts inserted into 18 inch or greater holes in the ground, leveled and cemented to secure. Now you could hang just about anything from the tops, run a secure rope, wire, whatever. from one to the other. Fasten a wire / nylon/ whatever netting material you want to use from top of one post to the top of the other..Run some kind of secure stakes into the ground to keep trellis stable..
Or may fasten trellis directly to the posts...As you can see I have many posts to use and can add more if needed
Just a thought for now,
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Re: Long trellises

Post  walshevak on 3/30/2015, 9:49 am

I would resist making a 20 ft long bed.  You will be tempted to go back to your row garden habits, getting to the middle squares would be a far reach especially if the entire back is trellised, and having to alway walks around the 20 feet would get tiresome.  Also, although putting the trellis on the North side is ideal, sometimes having a trellis on the West side offers some shade from the hot western sun for interior plantings that can take a bit of shade.  Your southern exposure will ensure plenty of sun unless trees interfere. 

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Re: Long trellises

Post  Turan on 3/30/2015, 1:08 pm

I have to put a support post every 4 feet to hold up my tomatoes or the top pole sags to breaking.   Maybe use cattle panels for your trellis.  They are definitely strong enough to hold winter squash.

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Re: Long trellises

Post  yolos on 3/30/2015, 1:26 pm

Free standing trellis built out of 3/4" EMT.  I slid the EMT legs over rebar pounded into the ground.  I used two middle legs but it would have worked just as good with 1 middle leg I think.  Small size watermelon growing on the trellis.  I do not like my top bar to sag so I always put at least one middle leg if there will be any substantial weight on the trellis.


Here is a pole bean trellis that is attached to a bed.  The outside trellis does not have a middle leg and it did not sag.  All of the trellises are 8 feet long.
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Re: Long trellises

Post  AtlantaMarie on 3/30/2015, 2:21 pm

We used metal fence posting for the trellis.  Seems to work fine...  We've got a pole ever 8 feet, I think...
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Re: Long trellises

Post  jimmy cee on 3/30/2015, 10:06 pm

Yolos
I think I saw Jack coming down the road...( Jack & the beanstalk) what gorgeous vines, I could only dream
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Re: Long trellises

Post  sanderson on 3/31/2015, 1:37 am

All great examples and explanations

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Re: Long trellises

Post  ralitaco on 4/18/2015, 1:48 pm

@violentlyserene wrote:My original plan was going to be two 4x4 beds with the back four of each trellised using the electrical conduit trellis in the book but the count is now at 5 tomato squares, a cucumber square, watermelon, maybe cantaloupe, and pumpkin (though i wasn't orginally going to trellis this until future years).
VS (btw -I cracked up at your user name)
Here is a link to a post where Boffer tested the strength of some 3/4" conduit (the book suggested 1/2" for the trellis) to help me decide if it could help support my plywood and MM.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t18566p32-adventures-in-table-top#219179
He put like 40# on the center and it only sagged a fraction.

As far as the length, I would agree 20' would be too long and I know I would be tempted to walk across the MM.

You said you had more trellis-able plants than expected and might run out of room on your 4' trellis. One possiblity is to build a 2'x8' or 3'x5' box, then you could make a bigger trellis. It wouldn't have to be all 8' but it could and you could easily reach in to harvest. 

Just my random thoughts on the subject, hope they help
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Re: Long trellises

Post  boffer on 4/18/2015, 2:12 pm

@ralitaco wrote:...a post where Boffer tested the strength of some 3/4" conduit (the book suggested 1/2" for the trellis) to help me decide if it could help support my plywood and MM

I used ½" EMT!  I guess you have a lot of extra safety built in! Very Happy
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Re: Long trellises

Post  ralitaco on 4/19/2015, 12:37 am

@boffer wrote:
@ralitaco wrote:...a post where Boffer tested the strength of some 3/4" conduit (the book suggested 1/2" for the trellis) to help me decide if it could help support my plywood and MM

I used ½" EMT!  I guess you have a lot of extra safety built in! Very Happy
Are you saying you used 1/2" EMT for the trellis or in your test?
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Re: Long trellises

Post  boffer on 4/19/2015, 12:42 am

½" for the test and for my trellises.
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Re: Long trellises

Post  southern gardener on 4/19/2015, 1:19 am

We have 22 foot long trellis only bed, that's 1 foot wide...strictly for trellis plants. Then a   2 1/2 foot walk way, then 2x8 beds parallel to the long trellis bed. Would that work for what you're looking for? Do you have a long narrow area to work with? We really like to long trellis bed. Easy to take care of, and you can reach the plants easily without reaching across the soil if that makes sense? I can post pics if you'd like Smile
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trellis

Post  wulfferine on 4/21/2015, 12:16 pm

I have a 2x8 that will be trellis in the back (along my deck) and lettuces in the front That will have two 5ft trellises side by side (i'll post a pic).  also one 4x4 with some tomatoes on the north side.  At home depot they sell 5ft conduit, so I'm just going to have the trellis extend outside the box a bit so I don't have to cut the pipes 1 foot.
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Re: Long trellises

Post  sanderson on 4/22/2015, 2:48 am

Wulfferine, Sounds good. Two 5' trellises for 8' bed and 5' trellis for 4' bed give the plants just a little more shoulder room, an upgrade from economy to business class.

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