Free or Cheap Structures for Growing Vertically

Free or Cheap Structures for Growing Vertically

Free or Cheap Structures for Growing Vertically



Use tree saplings or pruned branches to create a ‘teepee’. Water the area you want to create the teepee or do it after a good rain to make the job easier. Push saplings into the ground about 6 inches.  Wrap off the top with twine, rope or even grapevine.  For extra support I wrap twine around the saplings going up the teepee, about every 10 inches, to the top.


You can find this at the big box home improvement stores or like I did, FREE at your local recycling center.  I use this to make tomato cages and large arched structures. To cut this mesh I use a bolt cutter.  I make my tomato cages about 7’ high and 2’ wide when planting in the ground.  When making a tomato cage for in a large pot, I make the cage around 5’ tall and slightly smaller round than the pot I am planting in.  I make 1’ long ‘HAIRPINS’ from wire coat hangers or any other heavy gauge metal you can bend into a ‘hairpin’ type anchoring device. Place cage around your young plant or seedling , then push the hairpin over the bottom square of the concrete mesh making sure you anchor it in very deep (all the way to the top of the hairpin).

To make the arched ‘hut like’ structure, I cut my concrete reinforcement into a 10’ length.  Then I anchored one end, with the hairpins, then bent it into an arch as I walked it into the height I wanted, which was my height  (5’ tall) and then anchored this side into the ground with the hairpins.  I wanted it tall enough so I could walk under it to pick the cucumbers and beans easily.

My concrete reinforcement mesh has squares about 7”.  Just make sure yours is large enough for your hand to fit through to pick your tomatoes, cucumbers, beans or any other produce you grow. These structures keep your produce clean and make it easy to pick.



While thrift shopping or dumpster diving (with permission of dumpster owner), I look for other structures I can use in my gardens. Here are a couple of ideas.  Gazebos, youth beds (set on end), silo ladder cut into desired lengths and bent into a “U” shape and some things I don’t even know what their original purpose was…I just know I can repurpose them in my gardens.  FREE or CHEAP is very good. Use your imagination and HAVE FUN!

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4 thoughts on “Free or Cheap Structures for Growing Vertically

  1. Hi Lark. Thanks for contacting me through HGTV. Funny you should be blogging. I’m in the process of setting a blog up now. I have two homes now. One in Tampa and the one in Ohio and the challenges are sooo different. I’m a zone 9 rookie but catching on. I look forward to going through your posts and seeing what’s up. Always loved the friendliness of your garden. It’s such a delightful spirited space. I’ll let you know when I’m up and running on the blog. We’ll chat soon. I think I was blonde gardener on HGTV but my twitter is greenthumblonde and my blog will be Green Thumb Blonde. I hope to get it up and running by next week. With a little planning ahead it will be better. If you’ve learned anything, be sure to share with the new kid on the block.

  2. Hi Lark,
    We’re starting a community garden in my town here in NJ and I’ve made a website, FB & Twitter presence so folks will find us. My head is full of ideas, and I attribute (blame) Youtube videos for this. Maybe it’s the long winter and the promise of spring that has me going but anyway, found your videos on worm farming and subscribed to watch others. I think you’re great at gardening and I haven’t even watched anything but the worms and your winter video! We have so many deer here all year long that they’re like squirrels. I haven’t tried perennial gardening at my home here since I moved in and saw a herd of over 20 deer hanging out in the woods around the house. The previous owner did leave a large fenced veg garden behind, so I have a place for veg growing. I sow annual flowers and am living with that for now. We also decided to test a few perennials up by the house that were deer resistant. So far we’re ok. (but we spray them and the rhodies anyway)
    My reason for commenting here is about vertical structures. Have you seen the umbrella trellis idea yet? I’m thinking about finding a castoff patio umbrella, reinforcing it and growing clematis to climb it and still keeping it in the middle of a wood patio table, so we’ll have a shady spot in the community garden. I also saw a fab blue bottle tree used as a vine support for a delicate annual vine and have asked hubby to make one for me. I put a photo up on the website in the Garden Creations section.
    So glad to have found you. Think you’re great. Garden ON!

  3. Denise, thank you for the kind comments. I do have a structure for my trumpet vine. On my forum go to PERENNIALS and in the search box type trumpet vine. I have been training my trumpet vine into what I call my TRUMPET VINE TREE. I used an old patio umbrella. It is now about 10 years old. I severely prune it every Spring.

    W0W, you have a lot of deer. Last year I laid WOODEN PALLETS around the perimeter of my veggie area where the deer are all the time. They didn’t cross over it. It might work for you.

    Smiles, Lark

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