Tomato is one of the most popular and tasty fruit in the world. It can be also used as vegetable. Tomatoes contain variety of vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium and folate. It contains about 95% of water that is essential for our body.
There are different varieties of tomatoes that come in nightshade family. Those varieties change depend on color, size, shape, flavor and so on. Tomatoes are often red in color and also available in green, yellow, orange and purple. The taste of tomatoes grown by yourself is really higher than tomatoes that buy from super markets that’s why they pick before ripening.
Then you can also grow tomatoes in your garden and enjoy the real taste. The tomatoes can use to make salads, sandwiches, pickle and sauce. They really add color to dishes. Tomatoes are really easy to grow and care. By reading this guide, you will be able to know, How to Grow Tomatoes from Seeds Step by Step at Home | Guide.
First of all, you need to choose the best one that suitable to your garden among varieties like grape tomatoes, red and beefsteak tomatoes, cocktail tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, granadero tomatoes and cherry tomatoes etc.
What are determinate and indeterminate tomatoes?
There are 2 main categories of tomato plants such as determinate and indeterminate. Growth habit of the tomato plants is referred by those.
Determinate plants – It is also known as bush plants because they grow as bush. These are very ideal for gardeners who have small space to grow and suitable to grow in containers. These tomato plants generally grow about 3 to 4 feet high. The fruits can harvest in a short time period. Don’t need to remove side shoots. Heavy pruning does not require. However the flavour is typically less than indeterminate plants.
Ex-: Rutgers, Better bush, Celebrity, Marglobe
Indeterminate plants – This is also called cordon or vining tomato plants. Generally these tomatoes grow more than 6 feet high. Indeterminate varieties require support to grow well so that use stakes or canes. Due to the production of side shoots, it is important to remove them when appear between main stem and leaves in order to keep the plant growing successfully. The plants produce fruits all season.
Ex-: Cherry, Beefsteak, Aussie, Italian ice, Roma
What are the tips to follow when sowing tomato seeds?
A small bed which contains compost is ideal for nursery. It is great to start sowing seeds in late March to early April. Use the seed trays or container to sow. Apply fertile compost to those containers. You can sow seeds directly to the garden but the soil must be around pH 6.5. To identify the value of soil, do a soil test.
After sowing, watering is essential. Then, cover those from cling film. Keep it in the warm place or window sill. If there is no enough warm, provide artificial warm. Generally 1 or 2 weeks take to germinate. Remove the cling film after germinated. However don’t stop watering. Regular watering is essential until produce seedlings or transplants. Too much or lack of lightning and watering cause tall and weak seedlings.
1. How to grow tomatoes outdoors?
You should select a sunny spot because tomato plant requires 8 hours or at least 6 hours sunlight to grow healthy. The soil should be more fertile to take successful harvest. Loam soil is also good. The pits or ground should be prepared in advance for planting. Planting tomatoes is not difficult as you think.
Before planting them in final position, harden off 1 or 2 week. Do you know what harden off is? Harden off means that in frost season the young plants leave outside on fine days and bring them at night. You can leave these young plants in whole day outside after ending frost period.
Dig a hole in bed at least 1 feet deep because enough space need to spread roots. Now place the young plants in the hole and fill around from compost mixed soil. You can plant 2 seeds in a pit. Then the plants do not escape. If you are growing young plants in a pot, it is not necessary much deeper. But it is really easy to take healthy plants from growing tomatoes in ground.
When removing plants from nursery, it is good to remove them carefully with clod. To easily remove young plants, water well in order to moist the soil. Then remove carefully. Don’t destroy the roots. Plants should not be uprooted because it cause to break the roots and also plant may wither. So plant growth is stunted. If plant is wither after planting in such a case, water well and cover from sunlight until 2 or 3 days pass. Then the withered nature disappeared after few days and exposure to the sun is advisable at this time.
Provide mulch around the plant which help to prevent from weeds and also retain moisture. You can provide straw, dried leaves and coir around the plant.
How much water and light do tomatoes need to grow?
There are long roots of tomato plants. Hence water well. To retain moist in the soil, water well in the morning. Always try to water in the morning. Provide adequate water until start fruiting. To keep strong root system water regularly. But don’t splash water to the leaves which may cause to fungal diseases.
Keep in mind that provide enough water to the plant because over watering may cause to different diseases as well as it directly impact to change the flavor of tomato fruit. Required amount of water can change due to the temperature of your area. If the place where the water is stagnant, it will be caused to fungal diseases. Therefore, the root and stem may rot.
Lack of watering and lightning can cause the flowers and fruits to fail. Sometimes the tomato plant produces lot of flowers but there is no any fruits. The reason for that is lack of or over watering and lightning.
How to fertilize tomatoes?
Organic compost is more relevant to the plant. If any problem or condition arises, the appropriate fertilizer should apply. But avoid from applying high nitrogen fertilizer to tomatoes. It is important to fertilize every 3 to 4 weeks until frost. Liquid fertilizer is best to apply which quickly absorb nutrients to the plant from roots.
If the plant does not grow, mix fertilizer to the soil at a distance of about 4 or 5 inches from the plant so that the roots do not rot. After applying fertilizer, watering to the plant is more important. Keep in mind that fertilizer should not apply to roots, stem and branches of the plant.
Why tomato plants need support?
Generally the branches and twigs fall to the ground when the plant growing. The plant spread a bit because the roots also sprout from the branches that fall to the ground. Then there will be more yield. However to keep the branches from without falling to the ground, provide a support to the plant. Stakes, trellises and cages act as support for tomatoes. Then prevent spreading. It is especially essential when growing tomatoes in a container.
When you are growing tomato plants in container or grow bags, more feeding is required. High potash feed is useful to encourage more flowers and fruits.
The surrounding environment should clean because the roots, some branches and stem fall to the ground. Remove the things that help to fungus to grow.
Why tomato plant need pruning?
When talking about pruning, the lower leaves should be cut off because the branches may split so that there is possibility fruiting at the bottom. It will be harder for the plant to bear because the tomato plant is not very strong. After removing lower leaves, provide stake when the plant grows. Pruning is also important to get more healthy fruits.
You can grow basil, onion and garlic with tomatoes that aid to repel pests.
2. How to grow tomatoes in container?
There may not be enough space for everyone to grow plants. But they can use containers to plant. Tomato can also be grown in containers. The pot or hanging basket should large. There should be drainage holes in container. It is great to use loose fertile soil or compost and fill that container using potting mix. Use 1 container for per plant.
As talked about earlier, the same instructions can apply to this. Water regularly to keep the soil moist and providing at least 6 hour sunlight are essential conditions.
About 25 inch deep container is suitable for indeterminate varieties whereas 18 inch deep container is fine for determinate varieties. Cherry tomatoes are more suitable to grow in containers.
3. How to grow tomatoes in greenhouse?
Late February and Mid-March is best season to grow tomatoes in greenhouse.
Take a plate that used to apply the nursery. The number of plates vary due to number of plants you want. Make the mixture using compost, cattle manure, coir and poultry manure. Provide adequate water. Then cover this from cling film. It is essential to water daily. You can see young plants within few days.
Remove tomato young plants from nursery with clod when they are 6 to 7 inches tall. These young plants move to grow bags or container. Grow 2 plants in there. Fill the around of the plant using compost mixture. It is better to apply coir more which help to retain moisture in soil for a long time. Be sure to maintain space between plants.
As the plant grows, the branches should be pruned. When the plant reaches 30cm height, provide support and tie. Then apply liquid fertilizers. In case of fungal infection, appropriate fertilizer should be applied.
Provide proper ventilation in warm days which assist to prevent from pest diseases. Follow the instructions in tomato seed packet.
When to harvest tomatoes?
After some days, the fruits mature. Allowing the tomato fruit to ripe naturally that can enhance the flavor. The color of fruit changes from green to light when ripe. There are some color stages of ripen. The ripe tomatoes can see in yellow, orange, purple and red. Mostly ripe tomatoes are red in color. Harvest these ripe fruits after fully colored. Remove leafy green caps from ripe tomatoes when harvesting.
If there is a rainy season, harvest all the ripe fruits before heavy rains especially cherry tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes ripe quickly than other large tomatoes.
Where to store tomatoes?
Wash the tomatoes and don’t get crush them. Store harvested ripe fruits in a proper bowl at room temperature. The tomatoes are very tasty as soon as picked. Actually do not recommend to store in refrigerator because the flavour may be reduced. If you want to store in refrigerator, make a sauce and then store.
Which problems affect tomatoes?
There are several problems affect tomatoes. Different reasons badly affect to below mentioned problems Harmful pests like Aphids, Whitefly, Flea beetles, lack of nutrition, improper environmental conditions and lack of or too much watering and lightening impact to such problems which destroy the health of tomatoes.
- Blossom end rot – It is most common problem which affect to tomatoes. Dark brown or black area can appear bottom of fruit. It can damage the outside as well as inside. What is the reason for this? Lack of calcium is directly affect to occur this problem. PH level of soil should be around 6.5 in order to absorb adequate calcium.
- Fruit cracking – When growing conditions are not perfect, this issue may occur. Improper watering, temperature and feeding cause for cracking.
- Blossom drop – Flowers appear in the tomato plant but there are no any fruits occurred. Insect damages, uneven weather, lack of or over watering or fertilizers may affect to drop blossoms.
- Yellowing of leaves – Lack of some nutrients like nitrogen and potassium impact to yellow the tomato leaves.
- Catfacing – Tomato fruit become irregular shape. It is caused by cool temperatures during pollination and early growth.
- Curling leaves – Sometimes leaves roll tightly in case of heavy pruning.
Tomato blight, sunscald, holes in the leaves and leaves mottled are another problems of tomatoes.
How to solve problems that affect tomatoes?
Make sure to take proper solutions for the problems appear in tomatoes. There are some common solutions that can take to prevent from issues such as,
- Check the leaves and fruits daily
- Water regularly
- Keep the soil moist
- Remove the infected leaves
- Grow resistant cultivars like marigolds
- Provide enough ventilation for indoor plants
- Feed regularly
- When seeing eggs of pests under the leaves, remove these leaves and spray water and wash this infected area
Watch how to grow tomatoes in plastic hanging bottles | Amazing video
How many tomatoes does a plant produce?
About 20 to 100 tomatoes are produced by a single tomato plant. The amount of fruits may vary depend on the variety of tomatoes. Indeterminate varieties produce more fruits rather than determinate varieties. Professional tomato growers take abundant fruits from their plants because they supply conditions properly. So, keep in mind to provide appropriate conditions for your plants to get more yield.
What is the easiest tomato to grow?
Cherry tomatoes are very easy to grow and there are different varieties of cherry tomatoes. Beginners also can grow these tomatoes in their garden and good harvest can be obtained quickly.
What can do to prevent from yellowing leaves?
Different reasons affect in yellowing tomato leaves. It is great to do a soil test that help to identify pH level and nutrients level in the soil. Adequate watering is essential to prevent from yellowing leaves. Water to the base of plant without leaves and it is good to water in the morning. Feed carefully to the plants and liquid fertilizer help to absorb nutrients to the plant quickly. Be careful to provide adequate sunlight. And if the leaves turning yellow due to bacterial and fungal diseases, the diseased leaves should remove.
How long does it take for tomato plant to mature?
Tomato plants take about 50 to 80 days to mature from transplanting. That can be vary depending on the variety you grown. There are also fast growing tomato varieties so that they become mature quickly than others.
How often provide fertilizer to plant?
Tomato seeds don’t need fertilizers to germinate. You can provide fertilizer from seedlings. Once flowering and fruiting begin, fertilizer can be provided every 2 to 3 weeks until they are harvested. It is better to use liquid fertilizer and avoid providing fertilizer too close to the roots.
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