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Tomato Plant Support (in a raised bed)

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Project by kindman posted 06-10-2014 02:01 AM 4459 views 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Tomato Plant Support (in a raised bed)
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With the success of my raised bed vegetable garden, my (indeterminate) tomatoes have grown MUCH taller. The wooden stakes I bought just weren’t doing the job, especially towards the end of summer when my plants exceeded the five foot mark.
I promised in the end of my “Raised Bed Vegetable Garden” Project to show my method of supporting these seven foot plus monsters. My veggie beds are 4ft. x 8ft.
Materials:
Six 8 ft. – 1×3s
Two 8 ft. – 1×2s
Two 1 ½” carriage bolts w/ nuts and washers
Twelve 2” deck screws
Four 1 ½” deck screws
Exterior latex paint
Nylon twine

Stack four of the 1×3s and measure the halfway point of the length, drill a hole in the center of this spot through all four boards. Take two boards and put a carriage bolt through with the washers and nuts. Don’t tighten too much… you will want to open them like scissors.

Repeat for the other two boards that you drilled. Now you have the two “X” ends.

On the top end of the two “X”s, cut a slot 3/4” deep and perpendicular to the ground approximately the width of the 1×3s.

On the remaining two 1×3s you will be notching on ONE side near the ends. This notch will be used to slip onto the top of the “X”.
This may sound a bit confusing… but please refer to the photos to get an idea of what I mean.
Because my notches aren’t perfect, I usually use a rubber mallet to “convince” them they fit together. Check the fit prior to assembly.

Start assembly with the “X”s on the ends of your raised beds. Spread them out like open scissors and secure them with the 2” deck screws to the inside end of your bed.

Add your notched spreaders to the top of the “X”s.

For additional stability, I add the two 1×2s (with the 1 ½” deck screws) about 1/3rd the way between the top of my raised bed to the carriage bolt.

Disassemble all and give it all at least two heavy coats of exterior latex. Let dry and re-assemble.
Tie the twine on the top spreader, let it drop, and secure it to the bottom 1×2. Put these drops of twine approximately where you intend to plant your plants. As the plant grows, you can twist it around the twine (or even tie the plant to the twine)

If you have any questions, please feel free to send me a message, or post a comment.
Good luck and enjoy.

-- Kindman in Rhode Island



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kindman

28 posts in 181 days
hardiness zone 7a

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vegetable structure raised bed

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7 comments so far

View jroot's profile

jroot

5063 posts in 2258 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 06-10-2014 12:16 PM

A very effective plant support. I like the look.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4300 posts in 1891 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 06-13-2014 12:22 PM

Those wooden and twine supports should make life easy for you this summer! They look attractive and they will give the tomato plants sturdy support – well done!

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Tony 's profile

Tony

89 posts in 613 days
hardiness zone 9a

posted 06-13-2014 04:50 PM

This is a great system Kindman, It’s much better than those tomato cages. After you stick them in the ground they end up being only 3’ high. Nice work!

-- Type-0's are normal for me! St Augustine Florida

View bestofour's profile

bestofour

47 posts in 1214 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 06-16-2014 04:41 PM

Fancy!!!

-- The foolish man seeks happiness in the distance; the wise grows it under his feet

View kindman's profile

kindman

28 posts in 181 days
hardiness zone 7a

posted 06-21-2014 10:45 PM

Here is a photo of one of my tomato plants as I twist it abound the twine.

I think it is going to be a good year!

-- Kindman in Rhode Island

View jroot's profile

jroot

5063 posts in 2258 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 06-22-2014 12:22 PM

So glad to see this last photo. Your plan has worked well. Congrats.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

View justjoel's profile

justjoel

1063 posts in 2008 days
hardiness zone 7a

posted 07-29-2014 02:57 PM

I might have to try something like this next year, very cool.

-- "We are stardust. We are golden. And we've got to get ourselves back to the garden." Joni Mitchell

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