Many home gardeners love growing tomatoes. Though tomatoes are relatively easier to grow than a few other vegetables, some gardeners still struggle to achieve a flourishing tomato.
If you are among those gardeners who want a better growing plant but struggle with this matter, do not worry because we are here to help.
Here, you will find some of the top 10 tips for growing tomatoes in a better way. You will also learn how to obtain a bigger yield from a tomato plant with less work.
Tomato Growing Secret 1: Good Soil
If you want better growth of tomatoes in your lawn, you should focus on improving the soil. Good soil will make it easier for you to grow tomatoes. In case your garden is not good, you can use organic compost to improve it.
There are various organic composts available in the market that you can use to attain optimal soil health. Mix the organic composts with the soil to get the desired outcome.
Apart from this, you should also check the pH of your soil. The soil pH level can have a significant influence on tomato production. Tomatoes do not grow well if the soil is too acidic or alkaline.
To know whether the soil is optimal for tomato growth or not, you can use a pH test strip. The pH test strip will help you understand the exact soil pH in no time. Apart from the test strip, you can purchase a complete do-at-home soil test kit.
The best pH level of soil for tomatoes is around 6.2 to 6.5. If the pH of your soil is within this range, it will become a more effortless task for you to produce great tomatoes. At such a pH range, the plant’s roots absorb more nutrients readily.
Tomato Growing Secret 2: Put in a Sunny Spot
If you like in that part of the world where the sun is less scorching, ensure to put the tomato plant in the sunniest spot to grow tomatoes effectively. Lack of sunlight can minimize the development of the plant.
Providing enough sunlight to the plant will help it to produce more tomatoes. 6 hours of sun each day is the ideal amount of time for tomato plants. Apart from sunlight, you will also need to provide phosphorus for optimal growth.
The phosphorus will help the plant to develop stronger roots and flourishing tomatoes. You will get large leafy greens tomato plants if you provide high-nitrogen fertilizers. However, most experts recommend using an organic granular tomato fertilizer for optimal growth.
The granular tomato fertilizer contains high phosphorus, which is ideal for tomato plants. It offers slow-release phosphorus that will fulfil the needs of plants throughout the growing season.
Tomato Growing Secret 3: Warm Soil
Many gardeners might not be familiar with tomato plants that grow well in warm soil because it is a warm-weather crop. If you plant it in cold and frosty soil, you might not get the result you want.
Therefore, before planting the tomato plants, you should first cosy up the soil. By doing this, you can enhance the root growth and get better tomatoes. Most of the gardeners ignore this, due to which they do not get the outcome they want from the plant.
Moreover, if you are going to cosy the soil, first cover it with a black plastic sheet. Apart from a black plastic sheet, you can also use a biodegradable sheet mulch. You will require covering the soil with a plastic sheet or a sheet mulch for up to two weeks.
These sheets will keep the soil warm by absorbing the sun’s energy. After a couple of weeks, you can remove these sheets and begin the plantation process.
Besides, if you do not want to remove the sheets from the soil but still want to plant the tomatoes, you cut holes in the sheets. By doing this, you will be able to plant the tomatoes without excluding the sheet.
The best thing about these types of sheets is that they will also help you control weed growth. However, some gardeners do not like to use plastic sheets when planning food plants.
So, if you are among those gardeners, you can use a biodegradable sheet mulch instead of a plastic sheet. Or you can skip this tomato growing secret if you want. However, if you plan to utilize the plastic sheet, ensure to remove it on time to not turn it into the soil, which can be harmful.
Tomato Growing Secrets 4: Feed the Plant
If you want better-growing tomato plants, you will need to feed them properly. During the planting time, make sure to provide all the necessary fertilizers to the plant.
You can also add compost, crushed eggshells and worm castings to get the best outcome from your tomato plants. Things like worm castings, compost etc., contain the vital nutrients that are healthy for tomato plants.
The best thing is that these items provide nutritional slowly to the plants and help them grow well. It will also help you deal with blossom-end rot and black rot.
On the other hand, the crushed eggs shells provide greater calcium that supports the plant more. The nutrients supplied by crushed eggs, worm casting and compost provide a suitable cocktail of nutrition.
The mixture of nutrients offers an ideal start to the plant. On adding these things, you will notice a flourishing tomato plant within a few weeks.
Tomato Growing Secret 5: Keep Foot Traffic Away
If you want the plant to grow tomatoes well, you can keep the heavy foot traffic away. You should avoid planting tomato plants in places that encounter heavy foot traffic. Heavy foot traffic on the root can damage the roots.
Not only this, but also it will not allow roots to grow to their maximum capacity. Heavy traffic can compress the plant roots, which will block the flow of nutrients resulting in low production of tomatoes.
Tomato Growing Secrets 6: Dip Deep
Another vital tomato secret for growing great tomatoes is digging deep to plant the tomato plant. Most experts recommend digging a hole of around 2 inches to 6 inches deeper for the tomato plant.
After placing the plant in the hole, ensure to extract the branches present at the bottom. Remove the branches below the soil line to provide a better space for the tomato plants and stems.
Tomato Growing Secrets 8: Water Frequently
No matter what type of plant you are going to grow, you will require watering it frequently. Watering the plant regularly will help you in its better growth. Further, watering also supports new plants to produce a deep root system.
If you live in an area where the temperature is usually hot, you will have to water the plant more often to survive a hot day. It would help if you had a proper watering schedule when the plant is in the growing stage.
During the summer and spring seasons, you can water the plant once every 3 to 4 days. However, if the temperature in your area is scorching, we recommend you water the plant once every other day.
Moreover, keep in mind that the best time to water the plant is either in the morning or when the sun goes down. Evaporation is less at that time, due to which the soil can absorb more water easily.
If you notice any wilting plant, increase the watering frequency because the wilting plant is a sign that the plant is not getting enough water.
Tomato Growing Secrets 9: Remove Lowest Leaves
Most gardeners are not aware that the bottom leaves can cause various diseases to the tomato. The reason behind it is that the lowest leaves are present close to the soil, due to which they might have to deal with fungal spore splash-up and similar other concerns.
By removing the lowest leaves, you can minimize the chances of such diseases. Therefore, you should get rid of the leaves near the soil and make sure that there are no leaves near the base of the plant.
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Tomato Growing Secrets 10: Provide Support
Another thing that you need to do is to provide support to the tomato plant. Installing support to the plant helps it to produce healthy and large tomatoes. You can either build a cage, stakes or trellises as a support to the plant.
However, if you do not install the support, it might end up damaging its roots. Storms and foot traffic can easily cause harm to the roots of the plants if they do not have any support. The best thing is that by providing support, you can create good air circulation.
It will also let you offer a suitable amount of sunlight to the plant to grow well. Further, it also makes things a lot easier and manageable for gardeners.
As a result of these things, you will get tomatoes to ripen quickly. Remember that you should install the support either before or while planting the tomato plant. Installing the support after weeks later will be of no benefit.
How to Build Support for Tomato Plants?
But how can you build better support for the tomato plant? The following steps will let you build tomato support at a lower cost.
- Firstly, you will need to collect the wooden stakes, wire cutters, U-nails, jigsaw, and a welded wire-rolled fencing to complete this project.
- Go for a 2x2x8 framing lumber if you want durable yet inexpensive wooden stakes. You can also cut it down as per your need.
- To make tomato cages, we have used 5-foot stakes for large tomatoes, while for smaller tomatoes, you can arrange 3–4-foot stakes.
- Use 36 inches of wire fencing rolls. You can use these fencing rolls with 2 inches x 4 inches mesh grid. You can also choose the size of the mesh grid according to your requirements.
- After collecting these pieces of equipment, you will need to roll out the welded wire roll.
- You will require cutting sections for large and small tomatoes with the help of a wire cutter. You can cut around 12 inches wide and 18 inches high sections for smaller tomatoes, while for large tomatoes, you should go for 18 inches wide and 18 inches high sections.
- After that, on the stake, you will need to centre the wire grid. Ensure that you do this with the wire bottom about 12-14 inches from the stake bottom.
- Now you will have to use the nails to fix the stake and wire grid together. Make sure to use around three nails to create durable support. You can add the nail at the bottom, top and middle.
Now, your support for tomato plants is ready.
If you want your tomato plant to grow well, you should go through the given 10 secrets for growing great tomatoes. Growing and planting tomatoes will become easier for you with these secrets to growing tomatoes. You will also know how to get rid of the disease that you may face if you have a tomato plant in your garden.