How To Plant and Grow Your Own Delicious Tomatoes At Home

There's no doubt that homegrown tomatoes are much better than those you buy at the local grocery store. The perfect recipe for a BLT just happens to include one of these wonderful fruits: a couple of slices of your favorite bread, a little mayo, some lettuce, a few slices of bacon, a slice or two of your very own homegrown tomato and a dash of salt and pepper....YUM!! Sounds good huh?

Well for people who enjoy growing them and have been successful, having one of these tasty sandwiches is easy. For the beginner, however, it can be quite a challenge. With that in mind, we created this article to help you know when and how to plant them.

You have two choices for plants:
(1) Buying plants that are already started. When purchasing tomato plants, select stocky, dark green plants that do not have fruits.
(2) Start your own from seed.
If you choose to start from seed, here are some pointers. Start your seeds indoors 5-7 weeks before the last frost; early march in the south to late march in the north is a rule of thumb. You can use Styrofoam, paper cups, seed flats, or small pots to start them in.

Starting your seedlings in paper cups makes transplanting easy. Simply slit the paper cup down one side to allow the roots to spread; this will prevent damage to the root system itself. Start with a good potting soil; use 1/3 compost, 1/3 sand or loam and 1/3 garden soil. Mix these together and place in your containers. These plants prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH of 6.2-6.8. Keep the soil moist and put them in a window or spot that receives a lot of sun during the day. It will take 5-7 weeks before the seedlings are ready to plant outside.

The ideal temperature for germinating these seeds is 85 degrees F. A good time to plant tomatoes in the garden is when the outside temperature maintains a consistent 50 degrees F. However, plants will not begin to set fruit until the overnight low is above 55 degrees F on a regular basis.

Tomatoes will do fine in a five-gallon container, raised garden, or out in the vegetable garden. Decide where you want to plant them, remembering that the more direct sun they receive the more fruit you will get.

There are several successful methods to planting them. One is to plant them deep and leave a depression around the plant. This will help to hold moisture when it rains or when you water the plants. Place the plants deeply into the soil, burying them up to their first set of true leaves.

For tall spindly plants, pinch off the bottom leaves and use the horizontal planting method. Place them sideways in a trench. Carefully bend the stem upward so that the upper few inches of stem are above the soil surface. Roots will develop along the buried stem. This method of planting produces more roots and the underground stems are closer to warmth, rain and nutrients.

An old trick when planting is to add one or two tablespoons of Epsom salts in the planting hole, which adds magnesium, an important nutrient for plants. To help prevent blossom end-rot add egg shells to the soil, which adds calcium. Plants deficient in calcium can be prone to the disease.

Maintain even watering. This will help to prevent blossom end-rot rot and leaf-end roll and will keep your plants healthier overall and provide you with an abundant amount of fruit.

Plant tomatoes approximately 2-3 feet apart from each other to give them enough room to grow. When these plants grow larger, they will need additional support for their weight. You can purchase tomato cages from hardware stores, nurseries, and home improvement stores.

Once the tomatoes are ripe, you will have 3 or 4 days to use them. After that, you can cook them into a sauce and freeze it. This can be used in spaghetti, soups, and casseroles.

The sign of a successful tomato garden is when you have to find friends who are not growing them so you can share yours with them. Ok, so where were we? Lets go enjoy that BLT!!!

Are you a person who loves gardening? Do you have tips and information that would help other people in their gardens? If so, have you considered creating a successful website that helps others and possibly generates additional income for yourself? If you are interested click here for free information.


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While you enjoy your sandwich read these articles.

Create a garden
Garden pests
Gardening deals and discounts.
Helpful garden hints
Location for your garden
Preparing your soil

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