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Staking Tomatoes …..

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  • #256489
    GJOESQ
    Member

    OK, I know that tomatoes are fruit and NOT vegies but I’ve posted this question here anyway.

    We have two type of tomatoes at our place, rougue (self seeding) cherry toms and purchased (as seedlings) Roma toms. The cherry toms are doing fine without much help. However, as you can see from the attached photo, the Romas have collapsed all over the place. I tied them up, as ‘juveniles’ on 1.2 m high, thin bamboo stakes but they are now far to big and laden with fruit and have collapsed onto the ground. Oh, and yes, we failed to cut out the side branches so we have four very preponderous plants. Ignorance is NOT bliss. :blush:

    What is the best way you have found to support large tomato plants? 🙂

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    #518989
    BlueWren
    Member

    Hallo GJOESQ :wave: First of all, welcome to ALS.Lots of good caring folk here willing to share their knowledge and experience.

    Someone will help with your tomato question.I do know that not everyone recommends removing the side shoots.

    #518990
    crystal
    Member

    I leave all the shoots on and let em go, when they droop just genty lift them and tie them in a bunch to the bamboo stakes! Or, i have some that have two stakes either side and i just run the tie around them both and arrange the plant in the middle so the ‘branches’ are in the ties. Does that make sense? Hang on, i’ll take a pic and post it here…

    #518991
    crystal
    Member

    Here you go:

    Its hard to see cos i used green yarn, but it circles the poles with all the ‘branches’ hung in between.

    [attachment]IMG20120122_003.jpg[/attachment]

    This one is huge and very heavy, and with the rain we’ve had the poles have started to collapse, so bigger poles going in today.

    #518992
    crystal
    Member

    Deleted!

    #518993
    donkeynomad
    Member

    I’m a lazy tomato grower, I never stake them. I just let them spread all over the place and have no worries. I get no more pests or problems than when I used to stake them years ago.

    #518994
    GJOESQ
    Member

    Thanx to the repliers so far.

    Just after I posted my question, we had some friends pop around for afternoon tea and they said that they don’t stake up their toms because leaving them in bunches offers better protection from birds.

    This, combined with the two ideas here, sounds like the best solution. Lifting up the side branches and supporting them, as crystal has done, seems like a good compromise if I’m a bit concerned about the fruit touching the ground, otherwise, I’ll just let them go and harvest them immediately they are ready. Thanx for your help. 🙂

    #518995
    mauzi
    Member

    Hi and welcome to ALS. I have done both, stake up and let go (mostly due to being over busy at the time and the tomatoes got away). If you decide to stake, I use stronger stakes than bamboo as the weight can be a problem. We cut our own, but you can purchase wooden tomato stakes around the place. I found tieing them up with old pantyhose very effective, or a few wrap arounds of baling twine (as we had some), but thick string would do the trick. I did find when I left them on the ground, I had more spoilage and slugs were more of an issue, but still produced some nice tomatoes. Good luck.

    #518996
    karyn26
    Member

    Hi, and welcom.

    I have planted tomatoes for the first time this year so I am a novice also.

    I havent staked mine though they have grown rather tall,they were only little fellas when I put them in!!

    Mine are growing in a wicking bed and yesterday I put some bird wire on the outside edge to keep them from falling over the side.

    Some of the inner branches are falling over but that’s ok.

    I did try to trim off the side shoots but gave up as there were just too many.

    #518997
    crystal
    Member

    We get just about ever pest/disease/problem known to fruit and veggies here, so im always careful to try any method of prevention! plus, my garden is crowded and if the toms droop they tend to squash the companion plants!

    #518998
    Dayla
    Member

    Hello and welcome to ALS,

    your tomatoes look fabulous and just right for Romas. I’ve been growing veg for years and in my experience and in books I’ve read you don’t stake romas, they are a bush variety. You stake the tall ones like Gross lisse. You don’t take out the laterals of romas either you just let them grow. I usually put a bunch of straw under them as the fruit develops so it isn’t on the ground where they can rot and get eaten by slugs. I have grown them in large containers and the fruit hangs over the edge, even better!

    I used to think you picked all the laterals from the tall varieties but I have noticed the latest fashion is to leave 3 leaders for each plant. If some of the laterals are big enough you can tuck them under some mulch and they’ll grow into new plants.

    Enjoy your toms, they are great!

    Dayla

    #518999
    crystal
    Member

    im finding i dont have to stake the grosse lissee, but do the romas… Id imagine airflow would be restricted a bit if they drooped lots… so i stake.

    #519000
    lisanne
    Member

    Interesting! I have some roma’s that I haven’t staked yet but they are getting big so I’m going to this weekend as I don’t want the fruit on the ground – I’ve never grown romas before

    #519001
    Merewyn
    Member

    I have staked mine (I only have 2 plants) but they have now grown so big that a lot of the plant is still hanging down. I only stake mine to give me a bit more room in the patch. You can be pretty lazy with tomatoes, particularly the cherry types, they don’t seem to want too much pandering!

    Our neighbour just let theirs sprawl all over the ground this summer, and they had that much fruit it was ridiculous, so you can just let them go if you have the room.

    Merewyn

    #519002
    Claraflo
    Member

    I grew about 6 or 7 pear tomatoes at my mum’s house 5 or 6 years ago. I didn’t stake them and those suckers were huge, about 6ft each one. They ended up being a ground cover that went on for miles. We were still harvesting about a kilo a day off those bushes and didn’t once come across any rotten or eaten fruit even though they were prone. The only bitch was wading through meter’s of tomato vine collecting the fruit. :laugh: At first I took care, after a while I was rueing the day I planted them and just stomped on them hoping they’d meet a quick demise. No such luck…. 😛 If it makes any difference they were lying on top of the sweet potatoes and it didn’t affect that harvest either.

    I’m kind of sick of pear tomatoes now though. In fact I’m sick of any cherry type tomato. There’s only so many you can eat and I’m pretty sure a lot of them went straight into the compost bin.

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