Articles & Advice

11 Oct 2012

Tomato Time!

Not only are home grown tomatoes full of goodness and flavour, they give a higher yield for space occupied than any other vegetable!

Follow these few simple tips for a strong, healthy, top quality tomato:

Planting: Tomatoes love the sun, needing at least 5 hours of full sun each day and prefer a position that is protected from cool winds and frost.  Prepare your planting area by digging in organic matter into the top 15cm of soil.  Try to minimise root disturbance by inserting a stake or tomato trainer at the time of planting your tomato.  Plant seedlings at recommended spacing and water in immediately with a liquid fertiliser.  Use soft plant ties to avoid damaging the stems.

Fertilising: For best results feed your tomato plant regularly with a suitable soluble fertiliser.  Once flowers appear, switch from a general purpose fertiliser to a specially formulated tomato fertiliser or one containing high levels of Potassium.

Watering: Water your tomatoes regularly and deeply.  Water in the morning rather than at night and try to avoid wetting the leaves.  This will reduce the incidence of leaf spot and leaf blight.  Applying a 5cm layer of mulch, such as Lucern, after planting will help to retain soil moisture and also enrich the soil and suppress weeds.

Fruiting: Planting bright flowering annuals such as marigolds and nasturtiums may attract useful pollinating insects to your garden.  These plants may also repel unwanted garden pests.

Tomatoes for Pots: Most tomatoes may be grown successfully in pots that are at least 30cm in size.  Always use quality potting mix.  Don't re-use old potting mix as this will have lost most of the benefits your tomatoes need to produce healthy growth and tasty fruit.

Our staff will happily help you choose the tomato that is right for you.

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