Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Wooden Tomato Cages

Our tomato plants are getting big.  There are tiny tomatoes now visible on our sweet 100 plant. Yay!  I knew that we would eventually need some tomato cages, but when my friend Nancy pinned this on Pinterest, purchasing some of the typical metal ones was no longer an option.  I just had to build some of these beauties.

The tutorial is pretty straightforward so I'll just add some helpful hints as I take you through the process.

You will need two 2x2x8s and three 1x2x8s per cage.  (Pictured above is the wood we purchased for all four of our cages.)

We purchased our wood from Lowe's and it was bundled up with black ties.  Since we weren't aiming for absolute perfection we left the ties on and made our cuts through each bundle.  This made quick work of the measuring and cutting steps.  Of course, you must be sure to line up the ends of your boards first.

Then, we started assembling the sides by nailing the 18" pieces of 1x2 onto the 2x2s at 15" apart (see diagram in the original tutorial post).

Then we nailed the 19.5" 1x2 pieces in place to form our cage.  And then it fell apart.

Ok.  Not completely.  But it was terribly fragile.  And the pieces were trying to pull apart.  So we disassembled our first cage and started again with galvanized screws (leftover from our raised beds).  And the result was much improved.

I'm not sure if using a brad nailer (like Kristen did in the original tutorial) would produce a different result or if we still would have switched over to screws.  We wanted to make sure that these babies would last.  

We used a rubber mallet to pound them down into the ground about six inches.  Then we stepped back to admire our work.

Not bad for $30.  Only a bit more expensive than metal cages ($6 ea at our Lowe's) and so much more attractive.

1 comment:

  1. A dab of carpenters wood glue at each joint would make them even more sturdy.


Thoughts, ideas, suggestions...