Supporting vegetables

How to support climbing and sprawling plants

Climbing vegetables (such as pole beans and peas) benefit from support, as do some sprawling sorts, including cucumbers, melons, and tomatoes. Put up the supports at planting time; roots won't have spread yet, so you needn't worry about disturbing them. Train or tie the plants as they grow.

1. Broad-mesh plastic netting attached to hooks in metal fencing stakes can support cucumbers, squash, beans, and peas.

2. Cylinder of welded wire and two stakes support a tomato plant with a minimum of tying. Reach through mesh to harvest.

3. Tepee of bamboo poles tied together at top supports beans planted beside poles.