Tomato Plant Care Tips For Home Gardeners

There is nothing as satisfying as enjoying the taste of a garden fresh tomato from your own plants. The wonderful thing about tomatoes is that there are so many different varieties that they can be grown in pots on a patio, in the house or planted in the garden.

Caring for tomatoes becomes a passion for many home gardeners. There are countless websites, blogs and how-to sites on tomato growing that can often provide a lot of information. However, if you want to stick to the basics to get started, there are really only a few simple steps that you need to take for complete tomato plant care.

Varieties

Not all tomatoes are designed to be the best option for all growing conditions. There are two basic types, those that are determinate varieties, which only grow to about two to three feet, as well as indeterminate varieties. The indeterminate varieties will grow for the entire season and spread, so they are not good options for small spaces or potted plants.

Indeterminate varieties will need staking or caging to help support the weight of the tomatoes. They tend to include heritage and large tomato varieties. The determinant varieties can benefit from staking but it is often not necessary.

Fertilizer

Using a targeted 8-16-16 tomato fertilizer will be a must. The fertilizer numbers stand for the amount of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium or NPK. The three numbers are always in that order, and the 8-16-16 is the best combination for tomato plants.

Use the fertilizer at the time the plants are put in the soil. This is true if planting in pots, raised beds or in the garden. You will need to calculate the amount to use based on the plants and the current soil readings.

Planting

It is critical to plant tomatoes deep in the soil. This allows for roots to develop along the stem to provide stability to the plant as well as to draw in moisture and nutrients from the soil. Ideally, plant the seedlings up to at least the first set of leaves or even above to provide a firm foundation. This will also eliminate the need for staking in ongoing tomato plant care for many determinate varieties.

Sunlight and Water

One of the biggest issues in tomato plant care is the amount of sunlight and water the plants receive. Tomatoes thrive on direct sunlight with lots of air circulation, while a lack of either can cause limitations in production.

Additionally, watering the tomato plants throughout the growing season will be important. A soaker hose is a great idea and provides the hydration to the roots without wetting the leaves, an important consideration to reduce the risk of disease. Other benefits such as mulching and support for the plants will also be instrumental for a great harvest. For more details visit at bgi-usa.com. You can also connect them on Facebook for more updates.

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