Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Support System

When you grow plants like tomatoes or cucumbers or even peppers you need to support them. This requires a support structure of some kind. When I was first starting out I used an A-Frame but that really doesn't work too well because it draws the top of the plants together. You get enough of a jungle as it is, but if you force the plants together then you get such a tangle that finding the fruit can be an adventure.
So what's the solution? Well you'd like something that goes straight up, but it has to be able to handle a fair amount of weight. I've never actually estimated it, but it might end up being almost a hundred pounds, certainly over fifty per channel.
The solution that I finally came up with was thin-walled conduit. I drop 3/4 inch conduit into 1" conduit supports and then run cross beams of 3/4" conduit by joining it with 90 degree 1" conduit bends. Then I cross brace with 1/2" conduit held in place by wrapping it with those small bungie cords. The picture at right shows what my overhead structure looks like on a fairly large NFT system in the backyard.

1 comment:

drip irrigation systems said...

I grow tomatoes, too. I join what you say, and says there is nothing more important in growing tomatoes than their irrigation. Tomatoes should absorb the water and become juicy. Recommend the irrigation system to the process.