By Michael Nolan
Everyone who loves gardening and fresh vegetables wishes they could have a perfect plot of land that got just the right amount of sun and rain, but the rest of us live in the real world.
I lived in an apartment in New York City for several years with only a small balcony and I managed to grow some pretty respectable tomatoes using container gardens.
At first I was concerned that my neighbor was going to complain about the menacing plants climbing up, over and through our shared iron rail wall, but when told her to reach through and pick what she wanted, we were never at odds over it.
In a container garden, stabilization can be difficult, especially if the container isn’t large enough. I had fantastic results using — of all things — five gallon buckets!
I did spend a few dollars building some very simple cages out of 2x4s and smaller cross supports (for which I used PVC piping, cut to size).
I built a basic frame from the 2x4s, drilled holes through the wood and slid lengths of pipe through the frame to create a very sturdy and reusable cage. The best thing about it is that it was flexible enough so that the next year I was able to use it for other climbing and vining plants as well.
Thanks for the question, and keep them coming!