In the middle of one of the tomato fields, we found some poplars sprouting up. They are becoming quite the “problem children.” Upon closer inspection, we could see tomato plants using the poplar as a trellis, a rather interesting idea. A couple of years ago, Nigel made the decision to completely stop staking our tomatoes. This chore happens at the busiest time of year for us, and the guys hate doing it. Over the years we have cut back quite dramatically on the amount and variety of heirloom tomatoes, which really do better staked, but they seem to be ok as well. When we tell other farmers we are no longer staking they are always extremely surprised. But seeing the tomato wind itself up and around the poplar makes me wonder if there would be a way to grow something the tomatoes could creep up on? One of the many things Nigel taught me was it is always good to think outside the box, just because something is “always” done a particular way, doesn’t mean that is the ONLY way.