You have been growing creeping edible plants like tomatoes for some time in your backyard.
For structural support, you simply tie them to erected logs as a trellis.
However, according to Drake Kizito, a gardener, growing creepers in cages is profitable and economises space.
With a piece of wire mesh and a creative hand, one can make one’s own cost-effective cages.
Leonard Muzahura, another gardener, adds that cages provide support for branches that are overwhelmed with the weight of fruits.
“You don’t need to tie the plant since the bars of the cage support the stems,” he notes.
How to create cages
Muzahura says a well-fixed cage can last for years, thus supporting plants in all seasons throughout the year.
You can choose to plant the creepers in the ground or pots of different sizes, depending on the variety. You can also make a large cage that can support all the stems with heavy fruit.
“It can measure 5-foot, 10-gauge concrete reinforcement wire with wide openings up to 6-inches,” he explains.
Cut a desirable length of the wire and coil it to make a circular cage about 18 inches in diameter.
Cut off the bottom two levels of horizontal wire to create ‘legs’ which you can push into the ground to hold the tomato cage in place.
However, you can fasten the cage with more wire mesh for extra stability.
When cages are well-anchored, they support the weight of all the plants when laden with fruit.
In case you are planting tomatoes, put one inside the cage and keep pulling the stems through the wire as they grow for support.
Ensure that you space the cages so the plants don’t compete for sunlight due to overcrowding. Set them 4 feet apart, depending on the size of your tomato.
“Cages also work better in case you want to rotate plants,” he asserts adding that creeping beans can be rotated with tomatoes, and cucumbers among others.
This helps to avoid the buildup of insects and diseases.