How to Build a Protective Cage Around Tomato Plants

Overview

A tomato cage keeps your tomatoes and foliage off the ground, reducing the risk of rotting fruit. It also saves space by preventing your tomato plants from sprawling out and taking over the garden, and it provides support for tomato stems when heavy fruit clusters might otherwise cause damage. Tomato cages are available at most garden centers, but you can save yourself some money by building a homemade tomato cage out of wire.

Step 1

Bend a 5-foot length of concrete reinforcing wire into a cylinder with a diameter of 18 to 20 inches.

Step 2

Fasten the ends together at the top, middle and bottom with baling wire.

Step 3

Cut off the bottom horizontal wire, and push the cylinder down over your tomato seedling so the bottom vertical wires are buried in the ground.

Step 4

Drive a stake 12 inches in the ground right next to the cage, and tie it to the cage with baling wire. This will help stabilize your tomato cage and keep it from blowing over.

Step 5

As the stems of your tomato plant grow out of the cage, gently push them back inside.

Step 6

Use cloth strips to tie the tomato stems loosely to the cage if desired.

Things You'll Need

  • Heavy-gauge concrete reinforcing wire, 4 feet wide
  • Stakes, 4 feet tall
  • Baling wire
  • Cloth strips
  • Wire cutters

References

  • Kansas State University: Tomatoes

Who Can Help

  • Alabama Cooperative Extension: Backyard Tomato Production
Keywords: homemade tomato cage, wire tomato cage, support tomato

About this Author

Angie Mansfield is a freelance writer living and working in Minnesota. She began freelancing in 2008. Mansfield's work has appeared in online sites and publications such as theWAHMmagazine, for parents who work at home, and eHow. She is an active member of Absolute Write and Writer's Village University.