Tomato Growing Tips

Tomato Growing Tips You Can Use

It has been said that the most useful tomato growing tips are those which will insure a good harvest in Montana, the Dakotas, and northern Minnesota, where it has been reported that some gardeners have become alarmed when their precious tomatoes actually started turning red on the vines, a phenomenon not always seen in these parts of the country.

In truth, tomato growing tips are very useful in the parts of the country having relatively short growing seasons. Get the plant into the soil too early and the cold weather or a late frost will do them in, wait a couple of weeks too long, and some varieties will still be green when the fall frost first arrives.

Planting Tips - In cooler climates, the best tip might just be that of purchasing established seedlings, or even plants which are coming into bloom in nurseries, then transplanting them once the soil has warmed up and the danger of a late frost is well past. This approach usually guarantees some red tomatoes will be ready for harvesting, at least in late August if not earlier. In warmer climates it still doesn't hurt to start the plants inside or in a green house, and transplant young seedlings rather than trying to grow tomatoes directly from seeds in the garden.

Once your seeds sprout, thinning is all important. Thin the sprouts out, leaving one or two of the healthiest per square inch and later on move the best specimens over to peat pots a few weeks before setting them outside. Tomato plants grow best when given plenty or room, even as seedlings.

More Planting Tips - The tomato plant is related to the potato, and in that sense will do better the deeper it is planted. Tomatoes aren't planted as tubers of course as are potatoes, but one of the better tomato growing tips is to plant the seedlings or young plants deeper than the pot they came in, almost up to but not covering the foliage. This is the same as mounding dirt around a potato plant, which encourages growth and a higher yield. By placing the tomato plants deeper in the soil one will get stronger and healthier plants and higher yielding plants as well.

Pruning Tips - Another of the tomato growing tips worth heeding has to do with pinching, pruning, and leaf removal. As the tomato plant grows, the bottom leaves tend to become yellow and die back. These leaves should be removed, as they often tend to develop fungus problems when the plant is watered. It's even all right to remove green leaves from the lower part of the main stem once the plant has started to branch out. It's not necessary to have any leaves on the main stem below where the plant has started to branch out. The other things to remove are the suckers that develop in the crotches of the branches. Suckers don't perform any useful function, and will not set fruit. They mainly take up energy which is best diverted to the rest of the plant, including the fruit you would like eventually to grow large and turn red. As far as removing any other leaves is concerned, it's best to go lightly, or don't remove any at all unless air circulation seems to be a problem.

Watering Tips - Among some of the other useful tomato growing tips is one that almost doesn't need mentioning, as it falls more in the area of being an absolute requirement than a tip, and that is watering. Tomato plants need to be watered regularly and deeply. Sporadic watering usually results in a poor crop, or a crop of tomatoes that have a tendency to crack or split. As the fruit begins to ripen, watering requirements will become less, but the plant still needs to be watered regularly.