Stake and weave tomatoes - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Stake and weave tomatoes

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To have good tomatoes, you have to cage them or trellis them up.  If they fall over, they'll get slugs on them and be more susceptible to other insects and diseases. Now there's lots of different ways to keep your tomatoes vertical. You can use the stake and the cage method. I actually combine the two, using one of those big metal cages and then put a wooden stake through it so if you get those summer thunderstorms blowing through, with that stake in there, they'll hold those big plants. This is especially important for indeterminate, large tomato varieties such as 'Beefsteak' and 'Brandywine'.

Now there is another method that a lot of people have been trying. This is a method used by commercial tomato growers. It's called the stake and weave method! This is how it works.

Pound in 6 foot tall stakes in the tomato row after every two plants. Then weave heavy duty twine in between the actual tomato plants. Start on one side of the tomato and go on the next plant in the row and weave the twine, kind of like a figure eight design. You go back and forth, around the end stake and then go back the other way weaving it in the opposite direction around the plants. It creates this space that actually holds the tomato up. The key is to continue to create rows of twine every few weeks. You start when the tomatoes are about one foot tall, and then you do it again when  they are two feet tall, three feet tall....

You'll eventually have four or five different lines going up the stake by the end of the summer. These lines will keep the tomatoes upright and supported making for easier picking of the fruit.

By Charlie Nardozzi

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