These tomato growing tips can help you grow the tastiest, most gorgeous tomatoes possible. We all know that tomatoes purchased from the green grocer have been picked before the flavor is best. Also, tomatoes from the store have often been exposed to ethylene gas to cause them to ripen faster, allowing commercial growers to produce more fruit faster. Home grown tomatoes can be picked at their peak of flavor and have a wonderful texture.
Whether from seedlings or seed, be sure to give each plant plenty of space to grow freely. This may be the most important tomato growing tip to produce larger fruit. Start your plants in small pots and transplant them into outdoor soil or large containers at about two weeks of age.
Flavorful tomatoes require lots of sunlight to grow, mature and produce fruit. Each plant should be provided direct sunlight or 14 or more hours per day under indoor garden grow lamps. If using florescent grow lights, the plants should be placed so that their top leaves are only two inches or so from the lights.
Tomatoes grow best in hot weather. If growing the tomatoes indoors, be sure to place them in a location where the soil will become hot during the day. If planting outdoors in early spring, cover the planting area with black plastic about two weeks before planting; the extra heat will really pay off in a faster, tastier harvest.
Insert the tomato plants deeper into their final location than they were in their original pots. Of course, if planting seeds outdoors, this won’t apply, but most people grow tomatoes from seedlings. If placing a cage around the tomatoes or inserting a pole to tie the plant to as it grows taller, but sure not to damage the stem.
A little know tomato growing tip is to remove the bottom leaves from the plant. When the plants reach around three inches in height, remove the leaves from the bottom one inch of stem. These are the leaves most likely to develop fungus and this way you can prevent problems later on the growing process.
Remove any suckers that develop in the joints where two branches meet. These suckers don’t bear fruit and remove growing energy from the main plant. Water regularly and deeply. In early summer, pinch the tops of the main stem to produce more tomatoes and ensure the bloom set instead of drop.