This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

tomato tepees

teepees tomato teepees
tomato plants
It seems like a real garden now that the tomato tepees are up. The posts are 1x1x 10 ft poles cut from pine 2x4's. Most of them are 10 or 15 years old now, but a few were freshly cut last year. I like this tepee structure because its very strong and easy to assemble. Its also completely removable each year so I can rotate the planting location. This year, I am growing my tomatoes against the house. I took these pictures early in the morning when the only sunlight in the yard was on the tomato plants. I'm hoping the plants like all the sunlight.

Solanum lycopersicum


Blogger Kathy said...

Do you wind twine around the posts for support later on? I think I need some kind of support for the tomatoes we have in right now, and this seems simple enough.

June 11, 2007 11:31 AM

Blogger carletongardener said...

I tie the tomato vines to the posts every 6 inches or so. I use either velcro tomato ties or plastic shopping bags cut into 1 inch strips . There are plenty of other things you could use, like twine. Some years I wait too long to attach the vines and have trouble with stems tangling and breaking. A lot of gardeners don't like the regular tying of vines that is needed with this support method.

Winding twine is clever. Maybe you could just tuck the tips of the plants under it every now and then. I wonder if this would be strong enough to support a large plant? I've never tried or seen this done.

June 11, 2007 8:58 PM

Anonymous Jackie said...


Those tomato teepees are beautiful! Just so I understand, each plant has a teepee base of it's own, correct? And when the plant gets to the section where the posts cross, you just train it one way or another? Do you prune the suckers? Have you used this for cukes, peas or squash as well? Sorry for all the questions, I'm starting my first real garden at my fist home, and I'm very excited :)

June 13, 2007 10:04 AM

Blogger carletongardener said...

Yes, each plant gets their own pole. My plants always make it to the cross-overs. I just tie them to the parts that stick up above the cross or the adjacent posts. Anywhere. Last year they ended up at least a foot taller then the posts and I let them fall over. After 9 feet they can do whatever. I prune almost all of the suckers. Some get away from me. I like to let a few grow. But my main objective is to have tall plants since I have a small space. I only use the tepees for tomatoes. I like a trellis for cukes and squash, and I like strings for peas.

June 14, 2007 9:38 PM

Blogger Deb said...

I am really intrigued by your tomato tepees - I am changing my staking this year and really loved these when I saw them - I do have a question - how far apart are the *legs* of the tepees?

April 09, 2008 1:13 PM

Blogger kathy said...

About 3 feet. If you have more room, I think 4 feet would be better for the plants. My raised beds are 3 ft 9 inches and I usually make the tepees to just fit inside these beds.

April 17, 2008 9:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yet another question for clarity: Each tepee has four "legs" and there is one tomato plant at the base of each "leg," correct?

May 17, 2013 9:19 AM


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