Friday 22 May 2015

A new cane-support system

Regular readers will know that I have experimented with lots of different ways of supporting canes for growing tomatoes. There are a few good gadgets out there, but there are lots of poor ones!

You have seen this before, but just for the record, this is my preferred tomato-growing setup:

The key feature for me is the green wire cane-support device. In my opinion it is perfect for the job, but it doesn't seem to be available any more. There are many similar products on sale, but none of them are much good. They are mostly far too flimsy.

Anyway, the unexpected advent some more tomato plants prompted me to experiment with another method for supporting a cane. First off you need one of these:

I got them from Gardening Naturally.

That on its own is never going to support a cane big enough to hold a 5-truss tomato plant, but with the aid of a bent wire coat-hanger it just might! I drilled a hole in two opposite sides of a suitable container; cut the coat-hanger and bent it into a straight length; wound it round a bamboo cane; inserted the ends of the wire through the holes; bent them down to stop them shifting, and ended up with this:

Not ideal, but definitely worth a try!

I used the new method when potting-up one of the recent arrivals - a variety called "Crimson Crush", about which I shall write tomorrow:

If this method works well enough, I might try it on some of my other pots next year.


  1. Maybe I'll try something like this during the winter. Now with the rains, my plants are about to die. In our region, tomatoes in home gardens get over by the end of May.

  2. Nice!

    I'm starting to have some interest in gardening. I think it's a wonderful idea of growing your own food on your own yard - well, I live in an apartment, so that's a bit difficult for me, but I can still have smaller plants at home. But anyway, I enjoy very much your blog. Some information I can't use since I don't live in U.K. (I live in Brazil), but it has been very helpful!

  3. Until you showed a picture of one last year, I hadn't known about the frame with holes for canes that's weighted down by a grow bag. But I went and bought one and it's brilliant. Already in place now with tomato plants growing there.
    I wanted to buy another this year but haven't found one. A garden centre I phoned yesterday said all it has is plastic circles with holes in - designed for sweet peas. Sweet peas give me terrible hay fever but I'm going to look at the circles this morning in case they are also suitable for runner beans. My unsupported wigwams tend to lurch sideways because I can't get the canes deep enough into the ground.


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