Growing Tomatoes in Hanging Baskets

Hanging Basket and Container Gardening For Beginners

This is a guide to growing fruit and vegetables in hanging baskets and containers for complete beginners. I had never properly grown fruit or vegetables before and my experience of using hanging baskets extended to flowers only but growing tomatos and strawberries in hanging baskets was so easy, I decided to share my experience.

This article is written to encourage the absolute beginner to get out in their garden and learn to grow stuff. Gardening can be an incredibly rewarding and relaxing experience and I highly recommend it!

I have learnt something valuable over the last three months about gardening and growing stuff - firstly, I really like it and secondly, for the most part, it's very easy to do.

I can't underestimate the role played by my dad (who has his own garden allotment) and best of all, the internet which is full of useful gardening advice.

This is the variety featured in the video - Tumbling Toms
This is the variety featured in the video - Tumbling Toms | Source

Planting Cherry Tomatoes in a Hanging Basket

Cherry Tomato Seeds

Cherry tomatoes are an ideal plant for container and hanging basket gardening and there are several varieties which do well in containers and hanging baskets.

  1. Hundreds and Thousands - a prolific variety producing small, sweet red tomatoes, delicious straight off the plant. It needs very little coddling and looking after. Plant seeds in seed trays and germinate on a sunny windowsill or greenhouse. You won't get thousands but you have a good chance of getting a few hundred fruits if you feed once a week with something like Tomorite. They do well if planted with lobelia or marigolds, they keep the greenfly off!
  2. Tumbling Toms - this is the variety of tomato pictured in my video, very prolific again and also available in a yellow variety, sweet, small and juicy. Seeds do well in following years if you save them.
  3. Maskotka - not as prolific as some other varieties but has excellent flavour so well worth a try in a sunny spot.
  4. Garden Pearl - an unusual heart shaped tomato which is vigorous in growth and has lots of flavour. It is quite a fleshy tomato so quite nice as an accompaniment to cheese!
  5. Balconi Red -a tomato variety that probably does better in a long container than a hanging basket unless you can use something to support it but it has really good flavour and has prolific growth.

GET STUFF FOR FREE

In the UK we have a network of sites called 'Freecycle', maybe your part of the world have something similar.

Basically, its a place online where people recycle stuff for free; usually by OFFERING or TAKING items on the boards.

Freecycle can be a great place to pick up stuff for your gardening fun.


Seeds are often offered as are things you can use as containers.


It is well worth joining a freecycle site if there is one near you.


It might be possible to start gardening for more or less no outlay at all.

Container Gardening - What You Need

Well, I have learnt a lot of interesting stuff from my hopping around the internet and I didn't want to spend too much money on this new hobby.

In this article, I am going to show you how to plant cherry tomatoes in hanging baskets.

This is a good place to start if you want to have a go at growing fruit (or vegetable depending on your opinion!) which is pretty easy to grow from seed and is a prolific cropper - you will get lots of fruit from very little effort or cost.

I am using a hanging basket to grow my cherry tomatoes but there are lots of things you can use as containers.

One thing I discovered was that pretty much anything can be used as a container if you put your mind to it :-

  • · Old tyres - either piled on top of one another and filled with compost or with the tyre split and folded out to make a rubbery container
  • · Carrier Bags - really! The best ones are the ones you have to buy at M & S for 5p each.
  • · Guttering - the cheap plastic stuff, fill a length of it with strawberry plants and hang on a wall.
  • · Hanging baskets - more expensive but certainly more decorative.
  • · Baskets - try your local greengrocer or look in your loft.
  • · Pots/Buckets - I use plastic ones and buy the buckets from Morrisons from their flower stand where they sell them for 99p for 8 - bargain!
  • · Empty soda bottles - check out the video below. Strawberries do very well in soda bottles.
  • · Old bathtub - if someone is replacing theirs, ask for their old one, they make great planters.
  • · Watering can - very pretty, especially the metal ones.
  • · Empty tin cans - bigger the better and you can decorate them if you see fit.
  • Shoe Rack - yup, those plastic ones that you buy to house your many pairs of shows and sneakers which hang on the back of a door - brilliant for growing seedlings or as a herb garden.

On the face of it, I could start my gardening adventure with very little outlay.

For my cherry tomatoes planting adventure, I splashed out on some really nifty hanging baskets with clip in insertion grids, I got them on ebay.co.uk and I can't praise ebay highly enough when it comes to gardening supplies; the hanging baskets were very cheap and I got some really cheap plants as well.

For Beginners - What Else Is Easy To Grow?

I have spent the sum total of £15 for compost and seeds, here is what I am growing this year:-

Cucumbers

Tomatoes

Lettuce

Spring Onions

Onions - Red and Brown

Peppers (don't expect to get many in the UK, not hot enough but they are very tall already)

Chilli Peppers (as above).

I started all of the seeds off on my kitchen windowsill and moved them into bigger containers as more sets of leaves grew. Eventually, once the risk of frost has passed, everything can be moved outside

You can get free tomato seeds on Dolmio's Website at the moment!

So what's stopping you? It's fun and it can cost very little with a little bit of imagination.

Thanks for reading!

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Comments 39 comments

Jools99 profile image

Jools99 2 years ago from North-East UK Author

Anna, I usually plant them through the holes in the sides. Sometimes when in partial shade, they go off in search of sunshine and get a bit leggy. you could just put in some cut down bamboo canes and tie your plants to them with string. Nothing to worry about though, they will still get lots of tomatoes.


Anna 2 years ago

I have planted some cherry tomatoes in hanging baskets and the have grown very tall is the correct or what shall i do


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Scribenet, many thanks for your comment - we don'h have groundhogs in the UK, ha ha but I do get the occasional grey squirrel in my garden but they're not keen on tomatoes. Last year, I grew strawberries in hanging baskets but had to cover them in nets because the birds love them!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Linda, many thanks for your comment - I do love growing my own fruit and veg!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Audrey, this time of year, I am glued to YouTube pinching loads of great recyclable gardening ideas - I grow my seeds in used yogurt pots, I grow strawberries in old guttering, I've grown carrots and peas in old carrier bags from Ikea! Costs nothing except a few litres of compost.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Lisa, many thanks for your kind comment - I still have all of this year's plants (grown from seeds) on my kitchen windowsill because the weather here is so foul at the moment. We had hailstones yesterday...on 23rd May! It's actually too cold to harden the plants off, never mind plant them in baskets. Another week or two and I hope they'll be outside (and my windowsills will finally be clear of tomatoes, chillis, peppers and cucumbers).


Scribenet profile image

Scribenet 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

I have miniature tomatoes in a planter so I can move them to keep them away from the resident groundhog! So far I have some lovely little green fruit developing and I look forward to tasting them later on. I have grown tomatoes in the flower garden before s0 I can vouch for the affort being well worth it!


Sunshine625 profile image

Sunshine625 3 years ago from Orlando, FL

Way to go Jools...very clever! I never thought of hanging baskets and who doesn't love tomatoes! I like Rasta's idea also about plastic containers. Superb hub!


vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 3 years ago from Nashville Tn.

What great ideas for growing tomatoes! I am surprised to learn that soda cans can be used. Good way to recycle. This is done so well - beautiful presentation. Really fun to read and will share. Voted up and thanks.


Rusticliving profile image

Rusticliving 3 years ago from California

Hey Jools! I love this hub. Tomatoes are my favorite thing to grow because they ARE so easy. I love the different ideas you give on what we can use for containers. I recently have decided to go "outside the box" with my gardening and pretty much use anything around the house and yard to plant with. Right now I am in the middle of taking a vintage bicycle and turning it into a hanging vessel for my bird feeders! Voted up and shared!--Lisa♥


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Maheshpatal, it's only in house until they are transplanted into the hanging basket, then they're hung out on the garden fence - all I need to do then is water and feed them.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

whonuuwho, thanks for your comment, I am hoping for some success this year.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Steph, thanks for your comment - I love growing stuff from seeds!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Mary, it is very easy - I start off my seeds on my kitchen windowsill and then transfer them to the baskets in time; we just don't have the weather here in the north east. This year I have bought a walk in greenhouse (a cheap plastic one) to grow more stuff on quickly - the weather let me down last year, fingers cross it's better this year.


maheshpatwal profile image

maheshpatwal 3 years ago from MUMBAI

Jools very nice and creative ways to grow tomatoes at your home.... lovely hubs with very detailed information about the in-house gardening


whonunuwho profile image

whonunuwho 3 years ago from United States

A great alternative and very successful in its outcome. Thanks for sharing this. whonu


StephSev108 profile image

StephSev108 3 years ago from Atlanta, GA

Great idea! Thanks for the info.


mary615 profile image

mary615 3 years ago from Florida

I want to grow some tomatoes this year. I had bookmarked this Hub and I'm glad I did.

Voted it UP, will share, Pin and Tweet.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Peg, thanks so much for your comment. I got my seeds from Dolmio.Com free and thins year I got them from Heinz, also free. I have discovered a world of free seeds through using 'Freecycle' as well so my plan is to only spend money on compost and food thins year (and the food was bought in 2012). Watch this space!


PegCole17 profile image

PegCole17 3 years ago from Dallas, Texas

Very innovative ideas for low cost gardening. Wonderful!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 3 years ago from North-East UK Author

Art, I thought about trying the plastic bottles too. Some great videos on YouTube showing how to do this. Will stick with my baskets for now and see how I get on, did great last year in spite of crappy English weather, my strawberries just did ok, would have liked a few more fruits but we had no summer to speak of (as usual).


rasta1 profile image

rasta1 3 years ago from Jamaica

I actually save my plastic bottle containers to use as pots. I have some tomatoes growing too but I have no idea what variety it is. Let me know how your venture turns out.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Audra, many thanks for reading this now 'out of season' hub :o) I grew cucumbers but some were better than others. I will write a hub about them next Spring, my gardening gloves are off now until next April!


AudraLeigh 4 years ago

Micah has always wanted to make a garden. Hopefully we will have a plae together real soon! When you have cucumbers, please write a hub or share some hints that I can use to grow my own. I love them! Thanks for writing a very informative hub!


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Many thanks for your comment. This was my first attempt with strawberries and tomatoes and I have had lots of strawberries and my tomatoes are just turning red now (due to rubbish weather this Summer).


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Mary, many thanks for your comment. I actually created the dividers myself on Powerpoint. I can email you instructions or you can find MissOlive's hub which also shows you how, it is very good.


unknown spy profile image

unknown spy 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

Great tips and ideas you have shared. some day when i go home and stay there permanently, would love to make a nice beautiful garden beside our dream home :)


mary615 profile image

mary615 4 years ago from Florida

I grow almost everything in containers or hanging baskets because my soil is so bad here. I loved your dividers....want to share how you did that??

I voted this UP, shared and will Pin and Tweet.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Cyndi, many thanks - glad you could understand my dialect :o)


rasta1 profile image

rasta1 4 years ago from Jamaica

Interesting. I like the video. Your climate does require some different techniques to grow tomatoes.


sgbrown profile image

sgbrown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

Great hub for beginning gardeners. Many people just don't have a place to plant a garden and these are some great ideas. I think I may try some strawberries in a soda bottle or even a hanging basket myself. Great job, good information and videos! Voted up, useful and sharing on my blog. Have a great day!


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Great job! Everyone's beginning to think about gardening again...seems Victory gardens are coming back due to high prices and insecticides, etc., etc.

You've made it look nice and easy and your video (and the others you posted) are helpful and interesting!

Voted up, useful, and interesting.


cclitgirl profile image

cclitgirl 4 years ago from Western NC

What a fun hub! I know this will be inspiring for lots of beginners because it can be intimidating. Shoot, even experienced gardeners can get intimidated by all there is to know and do. :) Fun hub and I love how you presented this.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Ate my first 2 home grown strawberries yesterday Lesley - they were yummy!


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom

A fabulous hub Jools, I grow tumbling toms too, I find them a nice easy variety to grow, tasty too!

We will look forward to updates - I am sure you will have some great results, growing vegetables is so much fun and your hub will inspire others to give it a go!

Voting up.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

teaches12345, I ate my first two home frown strawberries yesterday - they were gorgeous! It is very cheap and quite fun to do.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

We have been thinking about starting some veggies outback using hanging baskets. I will have to show this to my hubby. Thanks for the information on planting and the different veggie types to grow. Voted up.


Jools99 profile image

Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK Author

Missolive, many thanks for your comments and I have you to thank for the dividers :o)


missolive profile image

missolive 4 years ago from Texas

This is a great idea for a hub. I have been wanting to grow tomatoes again and I may give hanging baskets a try this time. Nice layout and dividers on your hub. Easy to read and understand. Thank you for writing and sharing your ideas.

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