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Trellis help, please?

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Trellis help, please?

Post  ander217 on 5/18/2010, 10:01 am

Our vining crop boxes are placed next to a hog panel fence, which is three feet high. We have built our conduit frames just outside the fence. How should we proceed from here for trellising?

Can we use the hog panels for training tomatoes, cukes, squash, pumpkins, muskmelons and pole beans until they reach the top of the fence, and then add strings or netting to the open three feet of conduit frame remaining above the fence?

Or would it be better to tie netting all the way from the top of the conduit INSIDE the fence and secure it at the bottom of the fence, and then train the plants up the netting as though the fence behind didn't even exist even though it will be jammed right up next to the string?

We are debating whether to buy netting or tie strings from the fence to the top of the frame. We thought if we tied vertical strings we could also weave a few horizontal strings across, but I've never seen anyone else do that. Would winding a few strips of duct tape around the conduit just below each cross-string keep it from slipping down?

I'm a little worried that the metal of the fence might get hot enough in summer to burn the plants, although the panels shouldn't heat up as much as regular woven wire.

Final question: If we train the plants to the fence, should we tie them to the metal grids, or should we weave them through the open squares?

Thanks for any help.
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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/18/2010, 4:20 pm

I use hog panels with no problem. I also tied string from top to bottom of the trellis and then wove in between. Beans will not need the horizontal string as they wind themselves straight up. I'll go out and take a pic and be back to post it on this thread. In your case, I'd use the hog wire for the first 3-4', and then trellis up from there. I have no problem with plants burning as by the time it's over 100, the plants shade themselves.

Depending on the plant, I both weave and tie to the squares. Beans will do very well by themselves, but I find my vining squash sometimes needs a boost as it keeps wanting to go sideways, so I carefully tie the tendrils around the wire/string. Sometimes they break, but most of the time they hold OK.

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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/18/2010, 4:34 pm

OK - here's the pics of my trellis. First is up and down weave for the beans. They are grabbing two strings at a time, so I need to add a few more for the back row that is now coming through:



Here's the one I wove horizontal string through. I tied to each vertical but not to the conduit -- think I will use your idea of tape to anchor it better:



And here are spaghetti squash climbing a cattle panel put on end:


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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  junequilt on 5/18/2010, 5:01 pm

I really like that hog panel, not just for trellising but possibly for laying down over the SF bed as a deterrent against nosy dogs and pottying cats! It looks like something that, if cut to size, could just be left in place for the entire season. How difficult would it be to cut a panel, think you? Would a pair of wire cutters do it, or would I need a bolt cutter?
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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/18/2010, 5:55 pm

@junequilt wrote:I really like that hog panel, not just for trellising but possibly for laying down over the SF bed as a deterrent against nosy dogs and pottying cats! It looks like something that, if cut to size, could just be left in place for the entire season. How difficult would it be to cut a panel, think you? Would a pair of wire cutters do it, or would I need a bolt cutter?

The cattle panel in my picture is half of one turned sideways. I cut it with a honking big bolt cutter. A man with stronger arms than I could have used the 18" one I have, but not me. I borrowed the large one from the electric co-op and I think it was a 30 incher. The largest I had ever used, but it went through it like butter.

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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  Megan on 5/18/2010, 6:05 pm

Hm... how much is a panel like that?
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Trellis help

Post  ander217 on 5/18/2010, 7:01 pm

Thanks, Belfrybat, the photo helped. I agree with you, we should be able to just add the string from the top of the hog panel to the top of the conduit frame. I'm probably making this too difficult, and once we've actually done it, it will all make sense.

Megan, brand new hog panels in this area run nearly $20. They are 16' x 3'. Cattle panels are taller, and more expensive. Sometimes you can find good deals on quantities of them at farm auctions.
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Re: Trellis help, please?

Post  Megan on 5/18/2010, 7:04 pm

Hm... I may have to do some searching. Thank you!
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Re: Trellis help, please?

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