Tomatoes are the perfect thing to grow in your vegetable garden, even though tomato is ‘technically’ a fruit. There is a huge number of varieties of tomatoes that you can grow. One of the most important things to know about growing tomatoes is to stake them well, because if you don’t they won’t prosper. Also, you should water the base of the plants and avoid wetting the leaves, because wet leaves are prone to burn easily in sunlight.

Choosing the right tomato variety

There are a lot of varieties for you to choose from when it comes to tomato- growing. The determinate variety is plants which grow to a certain point, say 3 inches and then stop. The indeterminate variety is plants which will grow indeterminately. You can make them grow high. But if you are equipped with limited space, determinate varieties such as Sunbeam, Mountain Spring and Celebrity are good options.

Ensure that your plants get lots of sun light

If you are learning how to grow tomatoes and then putting your plants in a shade, then you are probably not learning too well! Tomato production needs at least 7 hours of time in the sun. If you put your plants in a shade, you are going to have lots of foliage, but hardly any fruits.

No need to go crazy pruning

Tomatoes are plants that grow just fine without pruning. A little pruning will lead to slightly larger fruit and smaller numbers while no pruning will lead to slightly smaller tomato variety and larger numbers. Do it as you please.

Don’t remove the branches or leaves

Exposing the tomato plants to direct sunlight is not a very good idea as that could lead to scalding. So you should not remove the branches or leaves from matured plants.

Don’t plant them too close

Planting the plants too close to each other will create problems. Tomato plants need space to grow; a gap of about 2 feet between two plants is a good idea. Plants which are not given enough space to grow will have more diseases and lesser number of fruits growing on them.

Give the plants food, but don’t try to stuff them!

Tomato plants respond well to a good fertilizer with equal amounts of potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen. Fertilizers meant for lawns are not a good idea. Fertilizers specifically created for tomatoes are wonderful. Or else you can try putting compost around the plants every fortnight or so.

Water the plants well

One of the most important things to follow on how to grow tomatoes is to water the plants well. Calcium is a mineral that is a must for growing tomatoes and you cannot afford not to give plants this. Calcium gets absorbed by the plants along with water so if the water is limited, it will lead to problems. Don’t water leaves of the plants directly, instead use mulch to conserve the moisture. Do not let the soil dry out.

Harvesting days

Four to six weeks are required for the tomato plants to stay indoors. After that, the time taken to mature will vary from variety to variety. Small grape and cherry- sized tomatoes will take about 55 to 70 days to mature while other varieties need more time.

Pest trouble

It is normal for pests to grow on your plants but that does not mean that they will harm the plant’s growth. Use chemicals only as a last resort.

No refrigeration

Don’t put your tomatoes directly in the refrigerator after harvesting. Instead keep them away from direct sunlight at room temperature.