Trellising Vegetables

I plan to try to do more trellising this year.  As with so many of the things we do here, I’ve just been carrying through the gardening practices I learned as a boy.  We never trellised our vegetables, so the grown-up me didn’t trellis them either.

We grow lots of peas and green beans (devoting an entire garden to each of them) but I’ve always chosen varieties that didn’t need to be trellised.  We’ve never grown any pole beans, for example. And until recently I didn’t even realize that things like cucumbers and melons could be trellised.

There are plenty of advantages to trellising, of course.  Trellised varieties tend to yield better and have less pest damage.  Trellising also uses less garden space (allowing the plant to grow vertically rather than sprawling out on the ground) and the veggies can be picked without so much bending over.  And of course the taste of the Kentucky Wonder pole bean is legendary.

Last year I planted a few rows of trellised sugar snap peas and they did well. They were much easier to harvest than the bush style peas.  Only after the season was over did I learn that a row should be planted on each side of the trellis.  I’m looking forward to trying that this year.

Trellis netting for the sugar snaps.  It seems I took no pictures of them once they were up.

Trellis netting for the sugar snaps. It seems I took no pictures of them once they were up.

We’ll definitely plant trellised sugar snaps again this year.  I’m not ready to try trellising cucumbers, but I am excited about planting some Kentucky Wonders.