Tomatoes are one of the most common edible plants; they are also not that difficult to grow. Tomatoes can be consumed in a number of ways including eating them raw or as an ingredient to a dish or even blend them to make sauce or drinks. These are but a few of the many ways that you can consume a tomato.
Did you know that essentially, the tomato is a fruit but is considered as a vegetable for culinary purposes?
Enough with that, before you start planting anything one should always prepare the ground. Most of the time, a healthy soil is the basis of how healthy your plant is going to be. When your soil is in perfect shape the need for fertilizers or pesticides is lessened.
Just like any other plants, tomatoes benefit from a nutrient rich soil. One should amend garden beds with sea soil or worm castings at the time of planting. You can also add eggshells to the soil for extra calcium; one can also use diatomite instead of eggshells as diatomite increase water retention as well as calcium.
It is important to remember that tomato plants need to be planted deeply into the ground. The roots will grow along the planted length of the stem, this ensures a firm foundation.
There are 2 most effective ways to plant a tomato:
- Digging deep – As mentioned earlier, tomato plants need to be planted deeply in the ground. Dig a hole deep enough for the root ball up to 2/3 of the stem. Placing a handful of compost before putting the plant in the hole will help with the plant’s overall health. Remember to cut off or remove all the leaves that get buried along with the stem.
- Trenching – Digging a trench about 6 inches deep, place compost and lay the plant horizontally into the trench. Cover the root ball and about 2/3 of the stem without leaves with soil. At the soil line, gently tilt the plant upwards being careful not to break the stem. It only needs to be tilted slightly and then as the plant reaches up the sun it will straighten up. Be careful not to hit the buried stem when you are staking your plants. This method is ideal for soil that is very wet or soils that haven’t had enough time to warm up.
Always keep in mind that planting always has rules. Let’s take spacing for example; plants should be spaced at least 18 inches and at most 36 inches depending on the size of your vines. Determinate plants may be spaced closer together compared to indeterminate plants as they tend to be smaller. If you are growing your plant in a pot, one should provide a minimum of 10 inches diameter pot per plant.
As mentioned in the earlier part, it would depend on your soil if you will need fertilizers. In case you do really need fertilizers, one should do it regularly with organic vegetable or tomato fertilizer that contains added calcium.
Calcium is important for tomatoes to avoid blossom end rot.
After you planted your tomato all that is left to do is to do is take care of it. A tip when watering a plant is deep and regular watering is best to help decrease the chances of blossom end rot. To help avoid blight and leaf sunburn, avoid splashing water on the leaves when you water the plant.
When everything is done, all you need to do is wait for the fruits of you labor to come and enjoy the product. Hope you learned something new and have a wonderful day.