dense raised beds, 4 heirloom tomatoes - how to stake?

janeccameronJune 4, 2007

I'm the proud new owner of 2 raised beds - one is 4' x 6' by 2' deep - the other is 4' x 8' x 2.

I planted 4 heirloom tomatoes - spaced pretty close to some cucumbers, peas, and yellow squash in the 4' x 6' x 2' bed. They aren't in a row.

I want to use supports for all the veggies - but am particulary concerned about the heirlooms because I understand they get very large.

I'm not very handy. I'm willing to spend a little money.

I'm considering 4 tomato ladders

but am worried they won't be tall enough.

On the other hand, these tall cages seem like they might not fit in the densely planted area:

here is a picture of the bed:

I have bamboo stakes for the strawberries, and am thinking about smaller ladders for the cucumbers and peas (in the unlikely event the peas - late planted) grow up.

I'm new - can you tell? Thanks for any help.

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You only need one stake per tomato plant as long as it's sturdy. You then loosely tie the stem to the stake as it grows.

Alternately you can use two stakes and put either trellis netting between or any metal fencing material with openings large enough for your hands to fit through and wind the stem through the fencing as it grows.

Lots of ways to support the plants, the real key is the support has to be sturdy.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2007 at 9:49PM
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That's reassuring, Justa. I bought the tomato ladders, and some similar vegetable ladders. I have my fingers crossed.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2007 at 2:54PM
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if you are growing indeterminants you want to make sure you have very sturdy staking framing as the plants can get very heavy. I use the green metal fence posts as stakes, 6" x 6 " remesh to contain them and panty hose to train / tie the stems to the cages.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2007 at 5:03PM
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ok - I'm hearing the "strudy" message.

I have other tomatoes in large containers with inexpensive cages - I've done this other years and its always been fine. My area has such a short growing season - its hard to imagine these 6' beasts. Frex - I have an early girl - which is a hybrid indeterminate - and it seems fine with the cage. My backyard is fairly wind-sheltered.

I'm really looking forward to the monster heirlooms - and my first year with these nice beds.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2007 at 8:47PM
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