How is everyone enjoying this gorgeous spring weather? We’re personally ecstatic over these 70-degree temps here at Total Home Supply, and are getting increasingly excited thinking about all of the awesome gardening projects we have planned for this year.
About a month ago, we wrote a how-to guide to planting new seeds. Inspired, I went ahead and planted seeds of my own. I’ve been having pretty decent luck with my little vegetable and flower plants, but none have been more ambitious than my snap peas. My snap pea stalks began to shoot up out of the ground within the first week of being planted and have been growing fast ever since! Of course, the stalks are very thin right now and not strong enough to keep themselves upright, so when they reach a certain height they start to “droop” over.
At first, I tried to remedy the drooping by tying the stalks to wooden chopsticks with twisty-ties (the ones that come on bags of bread). This idea worked for a little while, but when the stalks started to outgrow the chopsticks, I knew it was time to try something else. I took a trip to the hardware store for inspiration, and came up with this super simple DIY trellis idea. The whole thing took less than 20 minutes to put together, and all of the materials cost less than $10.
Here’s how to do it:
- 28″ garden stakes (2)
- 16″ planter
- Duct tape
- Strong thread
- Hardware cloth
- Enriched potting soil
- Wire snippers
First, attach stakes to inside of planter with duct tape, one on each inner end.
Cut the hardware cloth to approximately 2′ x 2′ and attach to the garden stakes. There are a few different ways you can do this, the easiest probably being by cutting thin strips of duct tape and wrapping it through the cloth and around the stakes. I got lucky in that that hardware cloth I purchased came tied up in a thin, pliable wire that I cut down and twisted through around the stakes. However you choose to go about this step, just make sure you attach the hardware cloth well because if it topples over, so do your plants.
Next, fill the planter about 2/3 of the way up with soil. At this point, your planter should look like this:
In our seed planting guide, we suggested the use of peat moss planters because they can be placed directly into the soil when it comes time to transfer them into a larger container or outside. I used a 2-pod x 4-pod rectangular peat moss planter for my snap pea seeds, and used a scissor (but you can also use a sharp steak knife) to cut down the middle so that I had two separate rows of 4.
Place the pods in the soil on either side of the hardware cloth, close enough so that the plant stalks can be tied up against the trellis without being bent. Lightly press down on the peat moss pots to sink approximately half of their height into the soil.
Fill the rest of the planter with soil until the peat moss pots are covered with about an inch of dirt.
Now, the important part. Carefully tie plant stalks up against trellis with a thin thread. If your plants are especially tall at this point, you may tie the stalks in two places (once at the base and once towards the top), but it should suffice to tie your stalks in just one place, about an inch from the very top. Make sure to tie the thread tight enough so that the stalks stand up, but loose enough so that it doesn’t strangle the plants and they still have room to grow through it.
Water your plants to help them adjust to their new environment, and put them out in plenty of sunlight.
The final result:
I originally put this project together about a week ago, and a few of my pea plants have grown since then (notice the droopiness with the stalks to the far right and far left). This will happen, of course, and when it does simply continue tying the top of the stalks to the trellis with thread.
Keep an eye out for more gardening tips and tricks from Total Home Supply in the coming weeks!