DIY



The Best Homemade Tomato Cages

Forget flimsy, store-bought products. Build your own sturdy, low-cost tomato cages with these four terrific designs!

| April/May 2011

You’ll enjoy a bigger tomato harvest if you use stakes or tomato cages to help your plants grow vertically, saving space in the garden while keeping fruits off the ground, preventing rot. Store-bought tomato cages tend to be flimsy and too small. For a sturdier option, consider building your own. We think these four plans are especially good choices for creating durable, low-cost tomato cages. Find the best fit for your garden and start building! (The cost estimates for each design are based on current prices from Lowe’s and Tractor Supply Co.)

Livestock Panel Trellis

Rigid metal livestock panels (sold at farm stores) make a strong, durable trellis. Simply stand up the panels and attach them to steel T-posts, and you’re on your way to your own wall of tomatoes (see illustration). Livestock panels typically come in 16-foot lengths, but with a pair of bolt cutters or a hacksaw, you can cut them to whatever length you want.

As the tomatoes grow, weave the plants between the openings of the panel for better support. You can use the panels for other crops, including beans, cucumbers and peas. You can even bend the panels to make a trellised archway, which you can cover with plastic for use as a cheap greenhouse or livestock shelter.

Supplies: 

  • One 16-foot livestock panel
  • Steel T-posts (use one for about every 4 to 6 feet of panel) 

Estimated cost: about $2 per tomato plant (assumes four T-posts, plus $20 for a 16-foot panel, with 18 tomato plants spaced 2 feet apart on both sides)

Complete instructions: See Vertical Gardening Techniques for Maximum Returns.

www.EasyWoodwork.org
5/4/2018 10:17:30 PM

I built my own tomato cages using the plans at www.EasyWoodwork.org - highly recommended you check those out too. They are detailed and super easy to read and understand unlike several others I found online. The amount of plans there is mind-boggling... there's like 16,000 plans or something like that for tons of different projects. Definitely enough to keep me busy with projects for many more years to come haha www.EasyWoodwork.org


Andrew Jones
5/4/2018 7:37:01 PM

I built my own tomato cages using the plans at www.EasyWoodwork.org - highly recommended!


Ben
3/20/2018 9:04:16 AM

I use t-posts to make a two foot wide rectangle in my 3'x25'long raised bed (5 or 6 posts on each side).Snap on some plastic insulators bottom/middle/top and hang 4x4 nylon trellis mesh to box the plants in. Twine can be run across the two foot width as the plant grow to pull it in narrower almost making an individual cage around a plant.





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