Most Effective Trellis for Tomato Plants
On this week’s episode, Travis explains the most effective trellis technique that he has come across so far in the vegetable garden. He currently has three rows of determinate tomatoes such as Bella Rosa, Brickyard, and Mountain Glory growing in the garden. When trellising tomatoes we recommend using the Florida Weave technique to keep the plants off the ground and healthy. The tomato plants are currently only about a foot tall so not ready for the first string, but Travis likes to go ahead and add stakes in the ground. As well as, prune the bottom lateral stems and hill the plants for stabilization and better root development. In doing this it makes it easier to add the stakes without puncturing the already laid drip tape irrigation. When adding the wooden stakes to the ground, Travis recommends digging in the ground where you want the stake to find the drip tape and then place the pointed end of the stake right next to the drip tape in the middle of each plant in the garden row. Travis prefers to use T-posts and squared wooden stakes because they tend to work better than stakes that are round. The round stakes do not allow for enough friction like the wooden stakes. So by placing the T-posts on each end of the row and one in the middle, this ensures plenty of stability for the tomato plants. Once the plants get a little taller and the stems get thicker you will be ready to run your first line of the Florida Weave trellis. Then, continue to add twine as the tomato plants grow throughout the growing season in the vegetable garden.
Florida Weave Technique
Why is the Florida Weave method the most effective trellis technique in the garden? Not only is this an effective method, but it is extremely simple and manageable too. With a set of wooden stakes and t-posts, you can set up the most effective trellis technique. For the twine, we have two options available such as the gro-tie garden twine and cotton butcher twine. The gro-tie twine comes in a belt-loop carton that can be attached to your belt for easy access while trellising your tomato plants. The cotton butcher twine comes in a smaller roll and is 100% biodegradable so you don’t have to worry if you leave some in the garden area. The reason behind trellising crops like tomatoes, peppers, or cucumbers is to allow them to grow off the ground and they are less susceptible to fungal disease problems. When Travis adds the Florida Weave trellis technique to his garden he likes to have the box of twine on his belt loop and use about a three-foot-long piece of pipe to guide the twine down the row. You should begin by tieing the twine off on the end row stake and taking the twine that runs through the pipe to guide the twine throughout the garden row. By weaving the string through one plant and around the stake a couple of times then weaving through the next plant along the entire row. Then once you reach the end of the row you should go back through to the opposite side of each plant to provide support on both sides of the plant. Once you have completed running twine through both sides of the plant you have successfully done the Florida Weave technique. Then as the plants continue to grow to add a 2nd and 3rd line of twine will help them continue to grow with plenty of stability and provide maximum tomato yields.