Today I excavated the pile of sticks and poles that is part of my tomato support system. If you imagine the stump in my plot, the sticks and poles are in a heap on and around the stump.
First I cleared out a bunch of old weeds and branches I’ve been throwing on the pile for the past 6 months. Then I slowly untangled each stick and pole from itself and from the weeds growing around them. Last year I did not use the full system, I did some weird angular madness based on central poles, along with traditional tomato cages.
I set aside the wooden poles, and only placed the metal poles in the ground.
This year I packed the tomatoes in far tighter than I normally do, so I am missing three metal poles. Also I am already having misgivings about how tightly these tomatoes will be packed together once they are fully grown.
But at least I got all of the metal poles pounded in. Next step is to use twine to affix the wooden poles to the metal stakes. I need some replacement wooden poles as well, since the ones I have are falling apart after years of being exposed out to the elements.
Since I had excavated around the stump, I decided to do some more intensive weed removal. Then I planted my 4 remaining Thai chili pepper plants, as well as my two remaining sweet red chili pepper plants, in, on, and around the stump itself. Then I watered the whole stump really good for 10-15 minutes. I also watered everything else (the cucumbers were looking especially peaky.)