Growing Tomatoes and Aftercare
How to Grow Tomatoes
Tomatoes are like potatoes, they are easy to grow and look after. We love growing this vegetable because it is healthy to eat, it is packed with good nutrients and we use it everyday in our cooking or salad. Tomato is not fussy where you grow them as long as the soil is fertile, but they grow well in sunny areas of the garden.
If you haven't got enough space in your garden, you can grow them in a container, in a grow bag, in a pot, or directly into the soil or in the greenhouse. Last year or the year before, the tomatoes that were planted in the greenhouse did very well and survived while the ones planted on the plots outside got blight. Mind you, we had so much rain last year that didn't help.
This year, the tomatoes are doing well outside the greenhouse and even the ones in the greenhouse too. Hopefully, it will yield much crop this time.
Steps of Growing Tomatoes
There are two ways you can do. Plant tomatoes straight into the soil or grow tomatoes into a seed tray first, then grow tomatoes wherever you want later when the tomato seeds are about two to three inches tall.
I want variety this year so I planted some cherry tomatoes, plum tomatoes, yellow tomatoes, tiger tomatoes and purple tomatoes. The taste of all this tomatoes are all delicious. I have grown the same kind last year as well and so enjoyed them. Try growing every variety or any type of tomatoes that you like to eat and see which grows better in your garden.
Growing Tomatoes Into The Soil or Ground
- Prepare your plots by digging and flattening the top of your plots.
- Make parallel holes(a foot apart from each hole) and put some compost and slow release fertilisers like Grow More or Chicken Pellets and mix them all up.
- Now put at least four or five tomato seeds in the hole but spread them out(thin them out later when they all grow}.
- Cover them lightly with the soil from the sides of the hole and firm them in.
- Water them after and everyday after planting(twice daily when weather is really hot). Just make sure you don't overwater them as the roots rot easily.
How to care for Your Tomatoes after Planting
If it is raining everyday there's no need to water the tomatoes. After you have planted your tomatoes, all you can do is watch them grow and water them everyday if needed but not to overwater as the roots will easily rot.
Feed the tomatoes with liquid fertiliser after a couple of weeks of planting and every other week after. Grow More or baby bio liquid fertiliser or any tomato fertiliser are good for tomatoes. When side shoots appear in between the leaves and stem, take them out as it will encourage growth and also cut the top of the tomato plant when it is so tall.
As the tomatoes can grow tall, it is better to support them with sticks, twigs or strings to keep them upright. Tie the tomato plant on the stick so that it will stay upright and the fruits won't weigh the tomato plant down. If you grow them in your greenhouse, it is possible to tie them on the roof of your greenhouse.
When watering, try to water from the base of the tomato plant instead of watering from the top of the tomatoes especially when the tomatoes got fruits. Remove also the older leaves at the base of the plant to keep it tidy and encourage growth.
Growing Tomatoes in Containers, Pots or Grow Bags or in your Plots.
- First of all, grow the seeds in a seed tray with good compost.
- When seeds are two or three inches tall, transplant them to the container of your choice.
- Put compost and slow release fertiliser like Grow More or Chicken Pellets in your containers or holes in your plots and mix them all up. Then take 3 or 4 tomato plants and plant them not so close to each other on the container or pot. Firm them in lightly after covering them with compost.
- Water them after and keep watering them everyday, twice daily if the weather is really hot. Just be careful not to put too much water to prevent rotting of the roots.
Tips on Where to get Tomato Seeds
- I have learnt that two or three of my colleagues are also gardening enthusiasts like me. So what we do is, every year we exchange plants or give seed plants to each other. What I do is, if there is a new kind or new coloured tomato that I see in the supermarket I will buy that and keep some seeds for planting. I love the cherry, tiger and plum tomatoes for salads. They got nice sweet taste.
- You can buy tomato seeds or tomato plants in garden centers but I find that they are so expensive whereas if I grow it myself it is cheap or free. I keep tomato seeds every year for planting the next year. If I see some new types of tomatoes from the supermarket, I will buy them and keep the seeds for planting.
I wrote this hub based on my personal experience as a gardener. I have learnt a lot from my Aunt and my own father about growing vegetables. In my country, people make a living by growing tomatoes in high quantity and make a living out of it. My father still grow tomatoes to sell in the vegetable market.
When to Harvest Tomatoes
Tomatoes are ready to pick when the skin starts to turn red, purple, yellow or even orange in colour. Tomatoes have different colours nowadays. Normally tomatoes are red in colour but there are so many varieties of tomatoes now with different colours of fruits when they mature and ripen. But some people pick them early even if they are green especially when they use them for pickling.
Uses of Tomatoes
- Tomatoes are used for the following:
- For most people, tomatoes are used for selling. In my country(Philippines) people make a living out of growing loads of tomatoes and sell them in the vegetable markets. Restaurant owners use tomatoes in their menus.
- Tomatoes are used to treat burns. – When I had burns in my hands before my friend suggested to put a sliced fresh tomato over the burns. It was painful but I did what she said and it worked. It helped alleviate the pain and cools the burns.
- Tomatoes can be eaten raw like a fruit.
- Tomatoes are used for pickling.
- Tomatoes are used for cooking, used in salads, and in sandwiches in most households.
- Tomatoes can be swapped with other vegetables that you don't have. You can swap vegetables with your friends or neighbours if they have potatoes and you don't have them.
Photos of Growing Tomatoes
Have you had any success in growing your own tomatoes?
How to Grow Tomato
- Three Ways of Planting Potatoes
There are different ways or methods on how to plant or grow potatoes. But I am going to write about how I grow my potatoes. Mind you potato is so easy to grow and look after.
Cherry Tomato Seeds
© 2013 Linda Bryen