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How to start Tomato plants from seed to harvest.

Updated on March 6, 2015

What Tomato variety do you like to plant? Early,Midseason,Late or Heirloom Tomato which is best?

Which Tomato variety do you like to plant? Early,Midseason,Late or Heirloom?

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Tomato Seedlings and Transplants

Picture of Tomato seedlings.
Picture of Tomato seedlings. | Source
Tomatoes Transplants in greenhouse with tags.
Tomatoes Transplants in greenhouse with tags. | Source
Tomato seedlings  that are being transplanted.
Tomato seedlings that are being transplanted. | Source

I Love Tomatoes?

5 stars for I Love Tomatoes?

Steps on starting Tomatoes from seed.

HI Gardening Friends

Here is how you can start Tomatoes from seed. First you need to get your seed catalogs out and decide which Tomatoes do you want to plant?

Here are some names of Commercial Seed Companies that you can buy Tomato Seeds from and they will send you a Catalog or they have a Web Site for you to buy from.

1. Totally Tomatoe's

334 West Stroud Street,

Randolph,WI 59356

2. W. Atlee Burpee Company

300 Park Avenue


3.Harris Seeds Garden Trends, Inc.

961 Lyell Avenue

Rochester,NY 14606

4. Stokes Seeds Company

P.O. Box 548


5. Tomatoes Growers Supply Company

P.O. Box 2237

Fort Myers,FL 33902

Do you want to start Early Season,Mid Season,Late Season or Heirloom Tomatoes varieties.

Now as always you need to have sterilize flats so that you don"t get any problem with your seedling damping off Now the next step is to fill your flats after they were washed and let dry now you fill the flats half full of germination soil and then soak the flats and let drain Next you can get your Tomato seeds packets and start to sow your seeds after you broadcast your seeds across the seed flat you can take some germination mix and cover the seeds about a 1/4 of a inch of soil then you take the flat and mist the flat and either set the flat in the greenhouse bench and if you don't have a greenhouse you can put the flat on a heated propagation mat. And you can use a a Gro light to place your seed flat under the Gro light you can put the seed flat under the light and keep the seed flat well misted.Don't let the seed flat dry out keep the flat evenly moist. It usually takes about 10 to 14 days for the Tomatoes seeds to germinate. After they germinate and start to grow when they start to have true leaves which means the leaves look like tomatoes plants leaves that is when you should transplant them into packs for seedlings and water them well after transplanting and set up on the greenhouse bench or under a Gro light. Keep evenly moist until they are well establish and then let the plants dry out some.If you follow these steps you should have success with growing Tomatoes from seed.

Here is a over view on starting Tomatoes seeds. step by step growing.

1.Soil and flats that are both sterilized. Make sure that the containers you use are clean and have drainage holes in them. And go to your local garden center and order or buy germination mix for starting seeds.

2. Moistion the soil and fill up the containers half full.Make sure the soil is moist but not wet.

3. Sprinkle the seeds evenly over the seed flat or containers And then cover the seeds with1/4 inch of moist soil mix over the flat or the container and mist the flat or container well and place the flat on a bench in greenhouse or under a Glo light on a propagating heat mat in your house. Or place the container in a plastic bay and put it in a warm place like the top of your refrigerator with a even temperature of about 70 degrees F. The warm soil is more important than warm air.So the top of the refrigerator is idea for starting seeds in you have know other place to start them.

4. The Tomato seedling will begin to emerge in a few days. Then you should check on the container and when they come up and when they start to germinate you take the plastic off - lit window. Like a sunny window or a Gro Light is best. If you use a Gro Light set the seedling an inch or two below the tubes and keep that distance during the whole growing season indoors.If the lights and the seedlings are to far away from the lights the plants or seedling will stretch toward the light and the seedling will develop thin,weak stems.You should keep the lights on at least 14 to 16 hours a day and turn them off for the night because plants need a rest to.

5. Now when your seedling are up and growing you don't let them dry out you keep the seedling evenly moist and not wet. When you do water the young seedlings don't water them to hard because watering the plants gentle so you don't water them out and drown the seedling.

6. Some of the commercial germinating mixes haves fertilizer in them so you don't have to fertilize until after you transplant them.So if you follow these few steps you should be able to grow a great crop of Tomatoes.

Here are some varieties of Tomatoes that you can try to grow from seed.

Early Varieties (50-65 Days)

a. Fourth Of July or Early Doll Tomatoes F1,54 days. It depends on what seed company you buy this seed from. But Fourth of July and Early Doll are the same tomato. 5-8 oz, very tasty,very high yield, indeterminate,

b.Early Girls Tomatoes F1 Hybrids 52 days.4-6 oz tomato, disease resistance, indeterminate,popular home garden variety.

c.First Lady Tomatoes 50-65 days Good disease and crack resistance, produces over long time period.

Mid Season Varieties (65-79 Days)

a. Burpee's Big Boys Hybrids Tomatoes 78 days The hallmark of this large, crack-free tomato is its absolutely superb flavor. Bright red, firm, meaty fruits often weigh 1 lb.or more,and feature smooth, blemish-resistant skins, Indeterminate.

b.Better Boys Hybrids VFNASt Tomatoes 75 days A spectacular, mid season variety with plump,juicy, deep red tomatoes that often weigh more than 1 lb. Once they arrive they just keep on coming! Fruits are extremely flavorful,with flesh that's juicy, yet firm. Heary foilage protects fruits from sunscald. A highly adaptable variety that thrives in nearly any climate. Demonstrates excellent disease resistant, Indeterminate.

c.Celebrity Hybrids VFN Tomatoes 72 days. AAS award winner with excellent flavor. Large fruits, widely adapted,disease resistant plants. Determinate.

Late Season Varieties (80-90 Days )

a. Beefmaster Hybrid VFN Tomatoes 80-90 days Two- pound fruit on vigorous plant. Indeterminate.

b. Supersteak Hybrid VFN Tomatoes 80-90 days. Modern beefsteak with less cat facing and other defects. Indeterminate.

Heirloom Varieties (75-100 Days )

a. Brandywine Tomatoes 90-100 days An Amish heirloom that dates back to 1885 and is generally considered to be the world's best-flavored tomato. Plants look like potato vines with good yields of extra large (weighing up to 1-1/2 lbs.) firm, clear-skinned, light rosy-pink fruits.Indeterminate.

b. Big Rainbow Tomatoes 83 days Indeterminate huge 2 lbs plus. Tricolor orange,yellow,red beefsteak type, very sweet, low acid.

c. Mortgage Lifter Tomatoes 75-85 days. Also called Radiator Charlie. long-time favorite with good yields of very large, smooth, pink-skinned fruits even in droughts. Very meaty fruits with few seeds. much like German Belgium but not quite as large. Very mild and delectable,Sweet and flavorful indeterminate.

d. Black Russian Tomatoes 78 days Indeterminate Rich old fashioned heirloom tomato flavor,Turns dark red-black whem mature.

e. Porter Tomatoes 78 days Indeterminate Smooth 2 oz dark pink,round/plum, drought resistant,high yield good for canning,for juice.

Yellow or Orange Varieties (70-85 days)

a.Golden Jubilee Tomatoes Indeterminate 76 days AAS award winner,8 oz orange,golden globe heavy yield,mild flavor.

b. Lemon Boy VFN Tomatoes Indeterminate 72 days F1, globed, 7 oz lemon turning gold,prolific and juicy wonderful flavor.

c. Mountain Gold Hybrid VF Determinate 77 days, 9 oz Yellow globe Tomato,grown for fresh market,crack resistance,low acid mild flavor.

Paste Varieties ( 75-90 days)

a. Roma VF 78 days determinate, improved disease resistance, Red plum great for sauce.

b. San Marzano F1 Hybrid, 90 days, Indeterminate, plum type 5 oz, few seeds, great for sauce.

Cherry and Container Varieties ( 45-60 days)

a.Patio F Hybrid Determinate, Great for pots and hanging baskets, Two inch fruit.

b Sweet Million FNT Hybrid Indeterminate, More disease and cracked -resistance version of sweet 100

c. Sweet 100 Hybrid Indeterminate, A abundant harvest of extra-sweet cherry fruits on hugh plants.

d. Tiny Tims. Determinate, 18 inch tall plant is great for small pots.

This is just a few of the varieties of Tomatoes to pick from to grow there are many other just as good as the ones that I told you about here. So pick your favorite and get your seed catalog out and place your order. So that you can get your seeds back to your house so that you can sow the seeds and have the plants ready for transplanting outside when the weather permits.

Here is a Key to Chart for Tomatoes.

Hy = Hybrid variety

A = Alternaria Stem Canker resistance

F = Fusarium wilt resistance

N = Nematode resistance

T = Tobacco Mosiac Virus resistance

V = Verticillnum wilt resistance

Det = Determinate or bush-type growth; flower buds form on main stem and only minor vine growth occurs after initial fruit set.

Dw-Ind = Dwarf - indeterminate type of growth; short, bushy plants like dwarfs but fruits sets all season long like indeterminate plants.

Ind = Tall growing or indeterminate type of growth; good for staking, caging or trellising; flower buds continue to form on vines and fruit sets all season long.

Little History of Tomatoes in North America.

Here is a little history of tomatoes in the New World. Our third President of the United States Thomas Jefferson grew tomatoes on his estate Monticello in Virginia. Tomatoes at the time was though to be poisonous and was planted as a novelty. He was planting them in his garden as early as 1781.

Well the health benefits of growing Tomatoes are.

Well the benefits of Tomatoes are as well when eating Tomatoes you get the health benefits of vitamins A and C beta carotene, antioxidants, such as fundamental lycopene and potassium.Tomatoes are said to one of the most beneficial and healthy foods which is low in calories. So enjoy your Tomatoes. To my Gardener Friends if you start Tomatoes from seed would you let me know how you did?

Thank You Gardener Den

© 2008 Dennis Hoyman


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