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Post  Leone 2/24/2016, 12:32 pm

Hi everyone!

This is our first year to do a square foot garden, and I have a question about the trellises.
Our boxes will be 2'x10'. We are thinking of using 3/4" conduit the full length of each box and using trellis netting.
We hope to grow cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and Pink French Cantaloupe on one of the trellises.

My question is, will the 3/4" conduit be strong enough to support that much weight? We wouldn't want it to sag in the middle. Will it need an extra support in the middle to prop it up?
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Post  AtlantaMarie 2/24/2016, 1:47 pm

If it's metal conduit, 1/2" will be fine if you have it supported every 5-8 feet. That's what we did.

If it's PVC, I have no idea... :-)
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Post  camprn 2/24/2016, 1:57 pm

Leone wrote:Hi everyone!

This is our first year to do a square foot garden, and I have a question about the trellises.
Our boxes will be 2'x10'. We are thinking of using 3/4" conduit the full length of each box and using trellis netting.
We hope to grow cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and Pink French Cantaloupe on one of the trellises.

My question is, will the 3/4" conduit be strong enough to support that much weight? We wouldn't want it to sag in the middle. Will it need an extra support in the middle to prop it up?
Yes, it will be strong enough. The 3/4" or the 1/2" metal conduit comes in 10' lengths so that's great. Be sure to secure the verticles well to the box or into the ground. If it were me, I would have a Y prop or something in the middle if you found the weight too much.

Also, it's easy to weave your owns trellis web, so you could attach it anywhere along the 10' without having to disassemble the top horizontal bar.

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Post  donnainzone5 2/24/2016, 3:16 pm

And you may want to use zip ties to tighten the netting .
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Post  NAR56 2/24/2016, 4:11 pm

Below is a picture of what I did for my Tomato and Cucumber beds. I used cement panels (less than $10 at big box hardware stores) with 2x4 for supports. I used the conduit to run in between the 2x4 posts. Then I used zip ties to hold them together. This Tomato bed has extend sides for Bird netting to keep the birds from eating our Tomatoes. I tried the conduit for the posts before, but it did not hold the weight. My setup is 2 years old and is still in good shape. Again, this is what I did and it works for me. Hopefully this helps you. - Ryan

Tomato Bed 2 x 10
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Cucumber Bed 2 x 8
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Post  jimmy cee 2/24/2016, 4:29 pm

NAR56 wrote:Below is a picture of what I did for my Tomato and Cucumber beds. I used cement panels (less than $10 at big box hardware stores) with 2x4 for supports. I used the conduit to run in between the 2x4 posts. Then I used zip ties to hold them together. This Tomato bed has extend sides for Bird netting to keep the birds from eating our Tomatoes. I tried the conduit for the posts before, but it did not hold the weight. My setup is 2 years old and is still in good shape. Again, this is what I did and it works for me. Hopefully this helps you. - Ryan

Tomato Bed 2 x 10
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Cucumber Bed 2 x 8
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This is really nice, I love it...
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Post  NAR56 2/24/2016, 4:38 pm

Attached are these beds in with some plants this past spring. These plants are not full grown, but you can get the idea of how they look with plants. Thanks, Ryan



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Post  Leone 2/24/2016, 6:26 pm

Thank you everyone for your responses! This is really a nice forum with such helpful people. We will consider your ideas and look forward to a prosperous gardening season!
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Post  sanderson 2/25/2016, 1:48 am

Nar56, Nice!

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Post  jimmy cee 2/25/2016, 7:50 am

Leone wrote:Thank you everyone for your responses! This is really a nice forum with such helpful people. We will consider your ideas and look forward to a prosperous gardening season!

Stick with these folk, Leone and you'll be able to grow anything.
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Post  ralitaco 2/26/2016, 12:24 am

I know you are talking about doing a longer trellis than I did, but I thought I'd throw in my $0.02.

Here is what I built:
Trellis Question 2015-010

Between the uprights on the end of the 2x8 beds and on one side of the 4x4, I used 1/2" conduit and netting for a trellis. The conduit held up just fine, however, the netting broke down by the end of the season.
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I have plans to build the tall legs on other end of the 2x8's and run an either conduit or a 2x4 between them. After that I haven't decided what I will do, but I can tell you that I had fits with the tomato cages falling over in my elevated beds so I need to come up with something.
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Post  sanderson 2/26/2016, 2:09 am

Don't forget to 'Search' for trellis. There are 185 threads and lots of photos of ideas.

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Post  AtlantaMarie 2/26/2016, 8:13 am

Ralitaco, what kind of trellising did you use? The green nylon stuff? Ours has held up for 3 seasons now...
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Post  ralitaco 2/26/2016, 9:11 am

It was the standard white nylon netting from a big box store
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Post  AtlantaMarie 2/26/2016, 8:44 pm

Huh.... I woulda thought it'd hold up better... And it LOOKS like the same stuff in your photos....

Not sure what to tell you, then. Sorry!!
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Post  jacinta 4/18/2016, 3:24 pm

How about a 14-foot wide trellis? Would that need center support? My raised bed is 14-feet long and I am reading this post with interest. What would be the best way to place plant supports along one side of my 14-foot bed?
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Post  sanderson 4/18/2016, 3:28 pm

Jacinta,  Welcome to the Forum from California! glad you\'re here A few members have long trellises so I will leave it to them to reply. The longest I have are 4' long so mid support is not an issue, even with 1/2" PVC pipe. Meanwhile, Search for trellies to see if any of the threads answer your question.

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Post  donnainzone5 4/18/2016, 8:48 pm

Jacinta,

Several years ago, I purchased a 12' trellis from SFG Foundation.

It was very heavy and durable, and there was a center support.

There were, however, two issues:

1.  I had difficulty reaching about five or so of the squares; consider using 4' trellises and dividing the beds, leaving a no-trellis bed in between the ones with trellises. 

2.  The piping that was slipped over the stakes got clogged up with dirt and mud, and I couldn't remove the stakes in order to move the trellis.  I finally pulled the entire thing up.  It was all I could do to drag it to the side of my garage. 

I managed to purchase a limited-edition, white-powder coated, 7'-tall trellis from the foundation a while back.  It's absolutely wonderful, and I'd gladly order another if the item was available.  (Hint, hint.)
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Post  donnainzone5 4/18/2016, 8:56 pm

Ralitaco,

I've always used the nylon netting from the SFG Foundation, which is very durable.  I've never had to replace the netting on my trellises, so I suspect that it will last three or more years.

However, I'm beginning to consider, a thin but strong and durable metal-type trellis material, which would be far easier to install than the netting.

Pros or cons, anyone?
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Post  jimmy cee 4/18/2016, 9:06 pm

donnainzone5 wrote:
2.  The piping that was slipped over the stakes got clogged up with dirt and mud, and I couldn't remove the stakes in order to move the trellis.  I finally pulled the entire thing up.  It was all I could do to drag it to the side of my garage. 
If you ever come across that problem again, removing stakes from the ground...run water down the sides of the stakes a little at a time, watch carefully to see it is sinking next to the stakes, wiggle stakes slightly, a shot time later it will be a simple matter to pull them up and out.
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Post  donnainzone5 4/18/2016, 9:26 pm

jimmycee,

That sounds like helpful advice, although the piping was cemented to the stakes by mud--and still is.
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Post  CapeCoddess 4/19/2016, 5:06 pm

donnainzone5 wrote:jimmycee,

That sounds like helpful advice, although the piping was cemented to the stakes by mud--and still is.
My trellis poles sometimes cement to the rebar.  A friend showed me that if I lay the trellis down, grasp the rebar with a monkey wrench and turn, rebar unscrews itself.  It was magical!  Righty tighty, lefty loosey.

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Post  ralitaco 4/19/2016, 11:12 pm

This is an odd question, but for those that use the Concrete Remesh panels, do you clean it up or paint it? The only panels I ever see are rusty...maybe I'm looking at the wrong stuff.
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Post  yolos 4/19/2016, 11:19 pm

ralitaco wrote:This is an odd question, but for those that use the Concrete Remesh panels, do you clean it up or paint it? The only panels I ever see are rusty...maybe I'm looking at the wrong stuff.
No, you are looking at the right stuff.  Always rusty.  That's why I don't use it anymore.  Makes a nice garden look ugly.  My one neighbor who can see my garden said I am not in compliance with the homeowners association rules.  He doesn't care so I try to keep it as nice looking as possible in case the gestapo sees the garden.  I have even contemplated painting my EMT trellises either brown or green to help hide them by blending in with the woods behind the garden.  Maybe green tulle instead of white.
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Post  BeetlesPerSqFt 4/20/2016, 12:13 am

yolos wrote:
ralitaco wrote:This is an odd question, but for those that use the Concrete Remesh panels, do you clean it up or paint it? The only panels I ever see are rusty...maybe I'm looking at the wrong stuff.
No, you are looking at the right stuff.  Always rusty.  That's why I don't use it anymore.  Makes a nice garden look ugly.  My one neighbor who can see my garden said I am not in compliance with the homeowners association rules.  He doesn't care so I try to keep it as nice looking as possible in case the gestapo sees the garden.  I have even contemplated painting my EMT trellises either brown or green to help hide them by blending in with the woods behind the garden.  Maybe green tulle instead of white.
Ugh, HOA! Evil or Very Mad I will be trying very hard to avoid that whenever my move from renting to owning happens, thanks for the reminder!
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