Trellising plants is an important way of supporting them in order to increase their productivity. Supporting vine crops gets them off the ground where they are exposed to humidity related diseases, or damage from workers. It also exposes the plants to maximum sunlight. In addition, it helps a gardener maximize the use of a small space.
The importance of plant support cannot be over emphasized. It is very important to every farmer or gardener who is looking to increase yield or to grow a beautiful garden.One thing that can stand in the way of that however, is the cost of obtaining these supports. Although purchasing a ready – to – use trellis makes installation very easy and cuts installation time by half, it still costs a lot. While some people in large scale commercial agriculture may find the merits to hugely outweigh the demerits, it may seem an exorbitant price for small scale subsistent farmers and gardeners.
However, there are still ways for small scale farmers and gardeners to reduce the cost of trellising while still enjoying the benefits.
HOW TO REDUCE THE COST OF TRELLISING
RECYCLE AN OLD LADDER: to reduce the cost of trellising, you could consider recycling an old ladder that is not in use anymore. Vine plants need something to climb on to grow upwards, and a ladder provides exactly that support.
Train the vines to wind around the two side pieces of the ladder as they climb upwards. In addition, the steps will provide support for the fruits. A ladder will be a good support for cucumber, tomatoes, melon and other vine crops that yield large fruits. However, when using a ladder as a trellis support, make sure the legs of the ladder are strongly mounted into the ground so that a strong wind will not fall it and damage the plants on it. Another way to support a ladder is by leaning it on a wall or a tree nearby.
IMPROVISE WITH A CHICKEN WIRE: if you have a chicken wire lying around, you could also use it as a trellis net. It is easy to install. All you have to do is get two poles and coil the two ends of the chicken wire around the poles. You could also make the attachment stronger by stapling the two together. Then, mount it very close to the crops and train them to climb the wire mesh.
To make harvest easier like with the trellis net, it is best to use a wire mesh with wide openings. This chicken wire trellis will not only reduce trellising cost, it is also sturdy, easy to dismount and lasts so many seasons.
MAKE YOUR OWN TRELLIS: another way to reduce the cost of trellising is by constructing your own trellis using cheap materials.
Using some pieces of wood and clotheslines, you could construct a trellis net by building a box frame with legs. After which you will make knotted net within the frame.
Another cheap way of conducting a trellis for vine crops is by using an existing cloth line and poles at your backyard.
Install this by attaching the clothesline diagonally from the ground to the pole and back to the ground.
You could also construct a rooftop trellis by attaching clotheslines to the eaves of a roof from the ground where the crops are planted.
These are some of the ways to reduce the cost of trellising.