It has taken veggie garden adviser Kenny Point of www.veggiegardeningtip.com a long time to find out what commercial tomato farmers knew all along. They way to control vine tomatoes is by growing up a trellis made of a series of poles with horizontal wires between them at various heights.
In this video (4:51) Kenny tells us the shortcomings of spiral takes, cages and towers. The main problem is that they are too small. Now he has come across the solution: trellises.
You take the longest poles you can find (he uses steel poles) and plant them in a row about 5 feet apart. Then you take 14 or 16 gauge wire and string it between the posts about 2 feet from the ground, winding it around each post as you go. The little tomato plants are planted right near this. You use plastic trellis clips to fix the tomato stem to the wire. As the tomato plant grows, you add strands of wire and clip the tomato plant to it with clips.
Kenny says that pruning is important. You pinch out the suckers (tomato plant term for new shoots) which generally occur in the cleft between existing stems. You do this to thin out the plant so it’s not so bushy, and to encourage fruit production.