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How To Stake Tomato Plants

Updated on August 6, 2013

Why Do You Stake Tomato Plants?

Gardening is a favorite hobby of mine. I love being able to dig in the dirt and watch my veggies grow. There is nothing better than getting a fresh tomato off the vine for the dinner's salad. I can just eat them sliced with a little salt and EVOO.

I have found that by staking my vegetable plants that they grow better. When I didn't stake them they flopped over because the vegetables were too heavy for the stalk to support them. They weren't sitting on the ground getting bruised, eaten by bugs or just rotting away in the soil. They actually grew better and bigger vegetables being suspended in the air.

Image courtesy of photobucket.com/g415/

Methods

Everyone who has a garden grows Tomato plants, they are just so easy to grow and can really be grown anywhere, even in a pot or upside down. I have multiple plants growing in my garden and even have some that I am growing in pots on my deck. These methods are also great for peppers, eggplant and any vegetable or fruit that needs to be supported.

There are a couple of different methods staking vegetables.

1. Staking, which is basically placing a metal or wooden stake in the ground and tying your vegetables to it.

2. Cages, placing a metal "cage" around your plant to support it as it grows.

3. Trellis, tying your plants to a metal or wooden trellis for support and letting them climb upward

4. Stringing, bet you haven't heard of this before. It is a fairly new method of tying your plants up to a series of beams. Sounds difficult but it is fairly easy. See the video below.

Plant Stakes

For all size gardens

This method goes way back and is quite simple. Tomato stakes are made of metal, wood, plastic or even bamboo.

Place the supporter in the ground about 8 inches deep and approximately 3 inches from the stem of the vegetable plant.

As the plant grows, I tie the plant's new growth to the supporter with zip ties but don't tie it too tight.

Make sure the tie is secure to hold the weight of the plant and vegetables but not cutting into the plant.

As the veggies grows, continue to tie it to the stake

Keep it trimmed as it grows to one or two stems

Pick vegetables when ripened and enjoy

Supporters

Gardener's Blue Ribbon STEZ1 Stake-It-Easy Plant-Staking System
Gardener's Blue Ribbon STEZ1 Stake-It-Easy Plant-Staking System

Simple to assemble, the customizable system's height and width can be easily adjusted as the plant grows. Keeping plants fully supported and upright helps promote adequate air circulation and access to maximum sun exposure.

 
The Tomato Stake - 5 PACK - Better than metal tomato cages or Bamboo stakes
The Tomato Stake - 5 PACK - Better than metal tomato cages or Bamboo stakes

This is better than bamboo, wooden, clumsy cages or towers. It is stronger, easier to use, and will last season to season. With the built-in twistie-ties, supporting your plants is easy. You simply attach the main stem of the plant to the appropriate area as it grows, without fear of breaking branches or ripping leaves.

 
Gardman R722 Green Tomato Spiral Plant Support, 72" High
Gardman R722 Green Tomato Spiral Plant Support, 72" High

These spiral supports will keep your veggies safe and sound and off the ground. Durable to last season to season.

 
QCI Direct Plant Clips Set of 15
QCI Direct Plant Clips Set of 15

Forget flimsy strings - easy-to-use clips support plants without damaging stems. Save time when gardening - attaching your plants with these clips is quicker and easier than using plastic ties or string... and they won't crush the stems.

 

Vegetable Cages

For medium size gardens

I use cages in my garden they are probably the most popular way to support any plant. I like the way they look in my garden, they are all lined up nice and neat in little rows. They also work great. The best part about using them is that you do not have to prune or trim your plants.

Space out the tomato plants by at least 4 inches

Place cages in ground securely and place over plants when they are small

As plants grow, make sure stems are secured by the spaces in the cage

Panacea 89723 Tomato and Plant Support Cage, Galvanized, Set of 10
Panacea 89723 Tomato and Plant Support Cage, Galvanized, Set of 10

These economical cone shaped wire cages are a great way to support small vegetable plants, vines and even other garden and flowering plants.

 
JWALT DURA-CAGE - Tomato Cage and Plant Support, 2-Pack Standard Size
JWALT DURA-CAGE - Tomato Cage and Plant Support, 2-Pack Standard Size

This innovative cage and support is made from a highly durable, weather resistant plastic that won't bend. It's easy to open, collapses flat for storage and highly stable.

 
Origin Point GroTall Tomato Trellis, Green
Origin Point GroTall Tomato Trellis, Green

This trellis has a vinyl coating that helps to protect the plant from weather. It also protects plants from wind and heavy rain. Available in a green color that blends with plants.

 

Trellis

For medium to large size gardens

A trellis is similar to a tomato cage accept that the trellis is flat

Space out the plants by at least 4 inches

Secure trellis in ground and use ties to attach plants

As plants grow, make sure stems are secured to the trellis

Stringing

For small to large size gardens

Tomato stringing is a fairly new method and involves tying the base of the plant to an overhead bar. The tomato plant grows up the string.

Tie plants at the base and then to overhead bar.

Make sure that stems and branches are tied securely but not tight enough to damage the stems.

As plants grow make sure that any new stems or branches are tied to the overhead bar.

How To String

Suggestions and Comment Are Appreciated

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    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 

      6 years ago

      Your lenses look amazing! I still have a lot to learn

    • microfarmproject profile image

      microfarmproject 

      6 years ago

      I have about 2 dozen tomato plants, and I really like the way the JWALT Duracage looks. I may have to get a few of those. Thanks!

    • profile image

      maggie_anne 

      6 years ago

      Super helpful, thank you!

    • awesomedealz4u profile image

      awesomedealz4u 

      6 years ago

      I string mine and they go absolutely nuts!

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 

      7 years ago from Virginia

      I like hanging them upside down from pots. The ones I stake seem to always do the best int terms of most tomatoes though. Great looking lens there!

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      7 years ago

      I'm an Aussie gardener who always has problems staking tomatoes. I start out fine and then have a busy week or so at work and the tomato plants have a growth spurt and I'm doomed. I have spent lots of time looking for info today and I found you! For the first time I was able to see how to support the vines from above. Brilliant. Thank you.

    • profile image

      pawpaw911 

      7 years ago

      Make me want a home grown one.

    • zdaddyo profile image

      zdaddyo 

      7 years ago

      It would be great if you showed some pictures of the stringing and trellis methods. My tomatos are out of control!

    • garishwasil lm profile image

      garishwasil lm 

      7 years ago

      cool lens. Thanks for sharing the info !!

    • RubyRavn LM profile image

      RubyRavn LM 

      7 years ago

      Great information. I'm fairly new to gardening (my 3rd garden is this year) and hadn't heard of tieing the tomato plants up like that. I think I'll try it, because I hate those cheap, ugly, poorly-made cages. I'm looking forward to more info from you. Thanks for the very informative video. :)

    • kislanyk profile image

      Marika 

      7 years ago from Cyprus

      Nice lens, well done.

    • profile image

      MarkFashionista 

      7 years ago

      Nice, I need to try doing this soon! Thanks for the tips.

    • Philippians468 profile image

      Philippians468 

      7 years ago

      if i ever find space in my home i will try your advice! thank you for sharing this wonderful lens! cheers

    • GonnaFly profile image

      Jeanette 

      7 years ago from Australia

      Love the tomato borders. Your lens has been blessed and added to my Growing Vegetables and Herbs lens.

    • reflectionhaiku profile image

      reflectionhaiku 

      7 years ago

      we plant tomatos every year - thanks for sharing this.

    • justholidays profile image

      justholidays 

      7 years ago

      It's almost indispensable to use trellis or so to grow tomatoes... I experienced the pleasure to grown them without anything and won't give a second try. This year, I'll get some trellis before!

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      7 years ago

      Am growing Nemo Netta, Callista, Floradade and Roma in my garden. Thanks for the info. Now I am supplying the local supermarkets and rearing to expand.

    • lisavollrath profile image

      Lisa Vollrath 

      7 years ago from Euless, Texas

      I've never seen stringing before! Pretty interesting. I cage my tomatoes with five foot tall wire fencing cages. Very sturdy and easy to manage.

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 

      8 years ago from UK

      I'm growing my own tomatoes for the first time this year. This is a really informative and wonderfully 'fresh' looking lens. Love your tomato theme design. :)

    • rewards4life info profile image

      rewards4life info 

      8 years ago

      Great lens on staking tomato plants. I'd love to start growing tomatoes in my garden, but my dogs would eat them in no time. =)

    • QuiltFinger profile image

      QuiltFinger 

      8 years ago from Tennessee

      Great lens! i always have a problem containing my tomato plants, hopefully this year will be better.

    • profile image

      poutine 

      8 years ago

      Very informative.

      I like to use the long bamboo sticks bought at the dollar store

      and tie up my tomatoes to them.

    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 

      8 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Great instruction on tomato plants.

    • culturenerd profile image

      culturenerd 

      8 years ago

      Great lens! I've always wanted a fruit and vegetable garden and tomatoes are at the top of my list. Thanks for the advice!

    • Gamganny profile imageAUTHOR

      Gamganny 

      8 years ago

      Thank you so much

    • aka-rms profile image

      Robin S 

      8 years ago from USA

      I'm crazy for homegrown tomatoes. Great advice here!

    • justholidays profile image

      justholidays 

      8 years ago

      Definitely love this lens! Lensrolled to my Strawberry Love one, tweeted, rated and... blessed by a SquidAngel.

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