DIY Network

Build an Easy Trellis for Tomatoes

This simple trellis is an easy way to support tomato plants.

More in Outdoors

attach the top support pieces to complete trellis
  • Time

    1 hour

  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Cut the Lumber

Using a circular saw, cut two of the seven 2"x2"x 8' boards down to a 6-foot length. These will be the top rails of the trellis (Image 1). Sharpen the remaining five boards on one end by cutting off the squared tip to form a point (Image 2). These pieces will be the support stakes of your trellis.

Step 2: Set the Stakes.

At the end of the bed, hammer in one of the pointed stakes to a depth of 2 feet and then tamp the soil around it to make it sturdy. Make sure to put the trellis through the middle of the planting bed so that the tomato plant has plenty of room. Place the support stakes 3 feet apart and hammer all five pieces into the ground. Then use 3 inch galvanized screws to attach the two 6-foot long top support pieces. Be careful to make sure both pieces are secured well to the center support. Galvanized nails could also be used to attach the top rails.

Step 3: String the Twine

To finish off the trellis install the four cord cleats evenly spaced along the top support timber, two each on either side of the center support. They should be attached vertically, not horizontally to make them more secure. Use galvanized 1-inch screws instead of the screws that came with the cleats. Galvanized screws won't rust like untreated metal. (Image 1).

For the tomato supports, use a 7' piece of twine. The braid makes it strong and it's smooth enough that it won't cut into the tomato vines. To attach the twine, tie a very loose loop around the base of the plant and then knot it. Be sure you tie it loosely so the plant has room to grow. Carefully wind the twine up the stem of the plant so that it emerges straight out the top. Gently pull the twine up and wrap it around the cleat. Wrap it with several figure 8's to keep it securely in place.

attach cord cleats across top support timber