Tagged with " veggies"
10 Jun
2009

How To: Make Tomato Ladders from the IKEA Salvia Trellis

Ladder or cage? The great debate. I have been obsessing over the idea of using tomato ladders rather than cages this year. I’ve heard they’re great for smaller spaces (like raised beds) because they help the plant grow up rather than out.

I had my eye on these beautiful red tomato ladders from Gardener’s Supply, but at $50 for a set of three, I’d be out $100 just on tomato supports!  While it’s not my main purpose for gardening, I do like the idea that I’m saving money by growing food in my backyard. So, for now the red steel ladders will wait on my wishlist.

I knew I couldn’t use the flimsy $1.99 variety either…last year I had to triage with bamboo, twine and pieces of a trellis – it got pretty ugly. Insert my seemingly endless supply of IKEA Salvia trellises, which I bought on clearance last year for $3. I copied the concept of a tomato ladder using pieces of the trellis. Each ladder uses six Salvia trellis squares (there are nine squares in a pack).

How To:

  1. Hook together three pieces of the trellis with the middle piece on the “outside.” This is one side of the trellis.
  2. Attach the lower and middle pieces of the other side by slipping them through the square part of the first side and interlocking them. Repeat with the top piece.
  3. Use zip ties to hook the middle vertical sections together. This helps strengthen the ladder since the top and bottom corners of the trellis are loose.
  4. Insert the lower angled pieces into the ground and drive small stakes or pins into the ground to anchor the ladder.

There you have it – a thick, steel tomato ladder for $10 each (or $2 in my case). All that’s missing is the cheery color. The good news is that it matches the trellis we already made for the sweat peas. So what do you think of my IKEA hack?  Have you made anything with the IKEA Salvia trellis?

1 Jun
2009

We Dig It

The plants and seeds made it into the ground two weeks ago and we just can’t contain our excitement. So much so that we forgot to write about the process. But we did document it with photos.  Here’s what we ended up planting: roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, green onions, summer squash, radishes, jalapeno, green peppers, yellow peppers, basil, cilantro, parsley, cucumber, beets, buttercrunch lettuce, arugula, snow peas, and sweet peas!  The following are pictures of one of the three planter boxes.

Week 0: Planted peas, beets, tomatoes, arugula, butter lettuce

Week 1: Sweet peas, beets, and arugula germinated!

Week 2: Sweet peas and arugula growing like crazy!

We edited the original container garden plan slightly to allow for the peas to grow in a north – south line and make the most of the space. As you can see in the above pics, the pea trellis is pretty tall and we’re hoping a wild wind doesn’t take it down (fingers crossed).

Our latest gardening dilemma is how often and how much to water.  We are currently watering every other day, by putting the hose into each box for about 2 – 3 minutes.

Original Plan:

30 Apr
2009

Am I a Pocket Gardener?

The May Fever issue of Sunset magazine came this weekend! I got some great inspiration from the “pocket garden” feature (page 40). They have a plan for 2′, Portland 3′ and 4′ square gardens… adding a few more items to each. Sunset has really stepped it up in the past year – it’s the perfect combo of inspiration and wholesale mlb jerseys how-to.

I was debating egestas whether or not to grow cucumbers this year since they are so buggy and disease-ridden, but after reading about the disease-resistant ‘Diva’ cucumber I’ve decided to add it to my plan. Now I have to figure out whether I need to trellis them.

And Replica speaking of… I bought these SALVIA trellises from IKEA at the end of the season last year. They wholesale mlb jerseys were on clearance for $2.99 and cheap jerseys I was sure I could use them wholesale mlb jerseys for gardening so I snagged a whole cart-full! As I loaded up, people started asking what they were for. I said, “I don’t know, gardening Purchases or something,” and the pallet was empty in minutes. 😉

Last year I used them to hold up the tomatoes since würdevoll they are really sturdy. It will be nice to use them at the beginning Showreel of the season this year – would make a good trellis for beans or peas – and now maybe cucumbers!

23 Apr
2009

Victory Gardening in Portland

It was 80° in Portland while Spring I was on vacation in Mexico! Guess I should have stuck it out a little longer. 🙂 Anyway, the hot weather coaxed my favorite red and cheap mlb jerseys black tulips to bloom and wholesale nba jerseys get promptly scorched. …there’s always JARS next year.

Vegetable Garden Planning
Last year I had one 4×4′ raised wholesale jerseys bed vegetable garden. It was my first attempt at gardening and I thought I if I was successful with one box I could graduate to two or three boxes this summer. Yeah! I’m currently trying to figure out how to fit everything I want to grow into three 4×4′ boxes. I overcrowded things last year and it got pretty messy toward Purchases the end of the season.

The image below is my initial garden sketch for this year. My “must haves” are tomatoes, peppers, basil, cilantro, Nenzingen lettuce and peas. I’m excited to try out cucumber, green onions and basil wholesale jerseys this year.

A few self-imposed guidelines for narrowing down planting choices:

  • Veggies I buy often.
  • Veggies that are expensive.
  • Veggies that have a short fridge-life and/or are best picked fresh.
  • Plants that are easy to grow.
  • Plants with a small footprint.