Complete Guide to Growing Tomatoes

How to Grow Juicy Tasty Tomatoes

This easy to read 80 page book was written by two tomato lovers. It is a valuable reference guide which is used around the world by professional horticulturists and novice gardeners alike. Discover the right way to prune, fertilise, water and stake. Diagnose pest and disease problems, and much much more. Learn about a new method for planting tomatoes which is great for root establishment plus the secret root dip which the professionals use to encourage huge roots. The bigger your root system, the healthier your plant. Find out how far apart to plant tomato seedlings. It differs from variety to variety. Find out the results of staking research 12 different methods were tested. See which one was the best! Dont worry if you have limited space, well cover everything you need to know about growing tomatoes in pots and hanging baskets. Find out the professional secrets to fertilizing its all in the mix, the application techniques and the timing at different growth stages. These tips alone will have a huge impact on your plants and give you sweet tomatoes! Read more here...

How to Grow Juicy Tasty Tomatoes Summary


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The Rockwool Slab Drip System

Greenhouse tomatoes growing in plastic sleeved rockwool slabs and fed by drip irrigation. The simplest and most common hydroponic method is using drip irrigation to deliver nutrient enriched water to plants grown in rockwool slabs. Many commercial tomato and pepper growers use this technique since it is relatively low-maintenance and can generally deliver foolproof results although it does produce runoff. In this photo, taken at Nipomo Mesa Farms in Santa Maria, CA, rows of tomato plants are supported by strings in a method called air-layering. As the fruit is harvested off the bottom of the plant using this method, the growing vines are coiled around each other

Manduca quinquemaculata Haworth Lepidoptera Sphingidae

Sphingidae Moths Ontario

Tobacco and tomato hornworms thrive on tobacco plants that are allowed to revegetate after harvest of the leaves, leading to high populations during the next year. Destruction of tobacco stalks, or inhibition of sprouting by application of plant growth regulators, greatly reduces hornworm populations in subsequent seasons (Rabb, 1969). Although not documented, timely destruction of tomato crop residue likely would have similar beneficial effects.

Leptinotarsa decemlineata Say Coleoptera Chrysomelidae

Leptinotarsa Decemlineata Say

An interesting life-table study was conducted on tomato, a sub-optimal host, by Latheef and Harcourt (1974). Not surprisingly, the major mortality factor was physiological i.e., the tomato plant was a fairly unsuitable host. However, these authors also suggested that cannibalism was the major mortality factor during the egg stage, and that rainfall affected the larvae.

Functional Map Of The Fruit-specific Promoter Of The Tomato 2a11 Gene.

Du Jardin P, Harvengt L, Kirsch F, Le V, Nguyen-Quoc B, Serge Yelle S (1997) Sink-cell-specific activity of a potato ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase B-subunit promoter in transgenic potato and tomato plants. Planta 203 133-139 Endo S, Sugita K, Sakai M, Tanaka H, Ebinuma H (2002) Single-step transformation for generating marker-free transgenic rice using the ipt-type MAT vector system. Plant J 30 115-122 Garbarino JE, Belknap WR (1994) Isolation of a ubiquitin-ribosomal protein gene (ubi3) from

The Sawdust Toilet On Camping Trips

Humanure composters have tricks up their sleeves. Ever go on a week-long camping trip or to a camping music festival and hate using those awful portable chemical toilets that stink If you have a humanure compost bin at home, simply take two five gallon buckets with you on the trip. Fill one with a cover material, such as sawdust, and put a lid on it. Set it inside the empty bucket and pack it along with your other camping gear. Voila One portable composting toilet When you set up your camp, string up a tarp for privacy and set the two containers in the private space. Use the empty container as a toilet, and use the cover material to keep it covered. Place a lid on it when not is use. No standing in line, no odors, no chemicals, no pollution. This toilet will last several days for two people. When you leave the camp, take the soil nutrients home with you and add them to your compost pile. You will probably be the only campers there who didn't leave anything behind, a little detail that...

A trifecta of tactics Trellises fences and cages

Tomato Stake And Weave

Tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants all can be caged or staked with a pole to keep them growing upright, elevate their fruits off the ground (which can help prevent disease and damage from slugs, mice, and other ground-dwelling critters), and give you more produce in less space. Commercial growers tie wire or twine between fence posts and weave the growing tomato plants through it. Also, 4- to 5-foot-high wire cages made of hog fencing or concrete reinforcing wire work well. Secure the cages with a tall stake pounded into the ground to prevent them from blowing over.

Chapter Cropping in rockwool and other inert media

Rockwool is by far the most important inert medium because of the extent to which it is used commercially around the world and because of the wealth of information available from experienced growers and plant scientists (Plate 3). However, with proper management, all the media mentioned have similar yield potential. Since most of the technology in inert media used in the production of greenhouse tomatoes is similar, a detailed management procedure on rockwool, with references to other media where necessary, is applicable to all the media. Table 19 Fertigation schedule for tomato production in rockwool (in kilograms of fertilizer per 1000 L of stock solution)

Anti InsectNematode Genes Bt Toxins

The potential for Bt toxin as a nematicide was reported by Marroquin et al. (2000). A preliminary study with transgenic tomato plants expressing the Bt endo-toxin CryIab after inoculation with Meloidogyne spp. resulted in a reduction in egg mass per gram of root of about 50 (Burrows and Waele 1997). The nematicidal effects were determined to result from a similar gut-damaging mechanism to that which occurs in insects the activated toxin binds receptors in the intestine and forms a pore, causing lysis of the Gut (Wei et al. 2003 Li et al. 2007). Tomato hairy roots expressing the Bt crystal protein variant cry6A were challenged with M. incognita and supported significantly reduced amounts of nematode reproduction, although gall-forming ability was not affected (Li et al. 2007). The nematode feeding tube acts as a molecular sieve, permitting the uptake of certain molecules and excluding others. It is believed that root-knot nematodes are able to ingest larger molecules than cyst...

A tomato for every climate

Feeding Tube Nematode

Choosing appropriate tomato plants for your environment will give you a better chance of a successful crop. No tomato plants are able to survive frost, but there are a large number that have been developed to be able to crop successfully in cooler climates. However, if you have your heart set on growing a particular variety, you may be able to adapt the microclimate of your garden to suit it. For example, a variety that The Florida Agricultural Experiment Station has released many heat-tolerant tomato plants, starting with the popular variety 'Marglobe' in 1925. Others worth trying are standard globe varieties 'Mule Team' (p25), 'Stone,' 'Thessaloniki,' and 'Tropic' the Italian beefsteaks 'Costoluto Genovese' (p56) and 'Costoluto Fiorentino,' as well as 'Great White,' 'Homestead,' and the ribbed beefsteak 'Pink Accordion' (p55) and plum tomatoes 'Amish Paste' and 'Roma.' The most important consideration in wet climates is choosing plants that resist fungal diseases, particularly the...

Where should I grow my tomatoes

Growing Outdoor Tomatoes

Growing tomatoes in pots means they are easy to transport, so you can position them where you like. They prefer a warm, sunny, sheltered position where they will have protection from excessive wind and rain. Alternatively, why not grow your tomatoes in a plastic planting pouch Plant a dwarf, bush, or trailing tomato plant into these soil-filled plastic pouches, hang from the center of a greenhouse or a tree, and watch the colorful cascade emerge. These sealed plastic bags provide a very popular and fairly cheap method of growing tomatoes, particularly cordon plants such as 'Ailsa Craig' (p32) or 'Gardener's Delight' (p42). They are filled with a proprietary growing medium, usually based on fertilized peat or a peat substitute, but you could try using ordinary bags of soil mix. Many, however, contain just 9 gallons (35 liters) of mix and are very shallow, giving little space for healthy root growth. They can be quite tricky to keep evenly watered, and regular feeding is essential. You...

Designing a Container Garden

Crow radishes around a tomato plant or better yet, some lettuce. Or grow the radishes, which mature in about four weeks, harvest them, and then plant lettuce and basil. That way you can have three delightful salad ingredients mature at about the same time. A little planning, a little attention, and a large, fresh reward for your dinner table.

Chapter Cropping in soil with drip irrigation

Plate 3 An early spring tomato crop in rockwool. Artificial light is used for growth enhancement, fine misting (fogging) for relative humidity control, and white plastic on the ground for light reflection, dust control, and evaporation control. Other services, not visible in this modern greenhouse, include computerized environmental control, liquid carbon dioxide supply, hot-water heating, and thermocurtains.

Fathoming Frost Zones and Growing Seasons

Whether a plant can survive the winter isn't your only concern. You know annuals are going to live for only one season, but you also want to know how long that season will be. After all, you may not be pleased if your dahlias die before flowering or your tomato plants freeze before producing much fruit. Unfortunately, hardiness zones don't tell you much about the length of the growing season. Enter the frost zone map.

All New Square Foot Gardening

Get in the habit of inspecting and pruning your tomato plants once a week to a single stem, and weave the top in and out of the netting. At the same time, check the overall appearance of the plant to make sure you have no tomato worms visiting. Since a tomato plant can sprout new roots along its main stem, I have found that the best way to plant the main crop of tomatoes is to lay them down horizontally in a shallow trench. They will develop an enormous number of roots, all along that hairy stem, which will sustain a larger, more productive plant. Pick your best-looking plants, and pinch or cut off the lower leaves (at least two or three) so you have a tall skinny plant ready to plant in a lay-me-down position. To do this, you first locate the square foot it's going to be in, take your hand or a trowel, and dig out a long shallow trench, perhaps 3 or 4 inches deep in the middle of the square and as long as your tomato plant is. Make the trench long enough so you can lay down the plant...

Intragenic Tomato S esculentum Concentrating the Quality Potential of Tomato into its Fruit

Future applications may support efforts to unleash the full quality potential of tomato. For instance, tomato plants evolved to produce high levels of antioxidant flavonols in anthers and pollen only. Replacement of the promoter of the chalcone isomerase (Chi) gene by a fruit-specific promoter extended flavonol production to the edible parts of tomato (Muir et al. 2001). There is a variety of promoters that can be used to direct gene expression to fruit tissues. These promoters include the ethylene-responsive fruit-ripening E8 gene (Deikman et al. 1992) and the fruit-specific 2A11 gene (Van Haaren and Houck 1993). The most frequently used promoter for near-constitutive expression was isolated from the tomato ubiquitin-3 (tUbi3) gene (Hoffman et al. 1991).

Fill In Your Garden Space Needed

Jane Goddall

Of course, you are going to have vertical as well as low-growing varieties. For the vertical ones, grow tomatoes and cucumbers. Leave melons and squash until later on. Get a mixture of early-, and late-season tomatoes. That will stretch out your harvest and give you small, medium, and large tomatoes tosell. Don't forget cherry tomatoes. They sell well, and most restaurants use a lot of them. Makesure you select disease-resistant plants. You don't want to fool around with something like a wilt disease, which could wipe you out in mid-season.

An Infinite Variety Of Containers

Vegetable Garden Pots

The first consideration in choosing containers is size. Where do you want to put them, and how much room do you have The larger and deeper the container, the larger the yields up to a point Eight inches of soil is enough for just about any vegetable. (See Figures 10.03 and 10.04 for each plant's specific requirements. If you've got fairly small containers in mind, and you want to grow tomatoes, stay with the smaller patio-type plants the larger varieties of this great favorite require up to 20 gallons (3 cubic feet) of soil to produce a decent crop.

What causes poor fruit set

Tomato plants sometimes fail to set fruit on the first cluster the plants may be stunted from being too old, too cold or too dry sometime before planting. The plants may also have been severely chilled following planting, or there may have been too much nitrogen in proportion to phosphorus and potassium in the soil. Tomatoes set fruit best if night temperatures are above 55 F pollen becomes nonviable when exposed to lower temperatures. Tomato plants need uniformly warm growing conditions, balanced fertility, ample water and uniform growth both before plants are set in the garden and during the growing season. They also need moderate amounts of nitrogen but relatively larger quantities of phosphorus and potassium fertilizer, especially during early growth in the garden.

Pest and disease control

Common diseases of capsicums include Phytophthora root-rot, Verticillium wilt, Rhizoctonia root-rot, and bacterial leaf spot. Seed fungicide treatments are effective against the three fungal soil-borne diseases (Phytophthora, Verticillium, and Rhizoctonia). Rotations help control of these diseases, so growing paprika after cereals (but not sorghum) or legumes is recommended, only repeating paprika after three or four years. Tomato crops also have a similar range of diseases and pests, so growth after tomatoes should be avoided.

How Damaging Are Pests

The cost of insecticide use in the central Florida tomato production region during 1995-1996 was high, 380 acre ( 950 ha) in the spring production period and 488 acre ( 1220 ha) in the autumn period. This does not include application costs because machinery costs are often spread over several practices for example, fungicides and insecticides are often applied simultaneously. Similarly, fumigation practices are directed primarily to disease and nema-tode management, though weed and insect suppression also accrues. Crop scouting costs cannot be assigned to any particular pest group and are shown separately. Note that insect-control costs are appreciably higher in the autumn period. This is because of better survival of pests during the summer inter-crop period than the winter inter-crop period, resulting in greater abundance and greater risk of damage. Also noteworthy is that even in the relatively insecticide-intensive Florida cropping system, insecticide costs represent no more than...

Nutrient requirements and effects

Although only 1 of the total plant weight is made up of inorganic nutrients, fertilizer application is critical it influences greatly the growth and development of the crop, as well as the quantity and quality of the fruit. A tomato crop absorbs the major nutrients at the following average rates nitrogen, 370 kg ha phosphorus, 50 kg ha potassium, 680 kg ha magnesium, 290 kg ha and calcium, 45 kg ha.

Lycopersicon esculentum

Although this is botanically a fruit, it is always considered to be a vegetable in culinary and horticultural terms. It is probably the second most important vegetable after potatoes. The cultivated tomato is a self-pollinating, annual plant. It is plagued with parasite, largely because of low levels of horizontal resistance resulting from a century of the vertifolia effect. Much breeding has taken place in the past, but there has tended to be a very rapid turnover of cultivars because of the use of vertical resistance.

Chapter Conventional cropping in soil

To achieve maximum production, greenhouse vegetables in general need a well-aerated soil with a high water-holding capacity, rich in nutrients and free from pathogens. Although greenhouse tomatoes can be grown on a wide variety of soils, the most suitable are those classified as loams, sandy loams, and some silty loams, all with a high organic-matter content, if possible (see Fig. 8). Other types of soils can be used, but they are more difficult and expensive to manage. For example, coarse sandy soils have low water-holding capacity, poor nutrient retention, and poor cone formation when drip-irrigated silty soils have an unstable structure that breaks down with heavy watering and clay loams are poorly drained, difficult to leach, and their structure is damaged by cultivation when wet. Proper management can render almost any soil suitable for greenhouse production. For example, both light and heavy soils can be improved by adding organic matter. If natural drainage is poor, as in most...

Save your favorite seeds

However, if you or any of your neighbors grow several tomato plants within a bee's flight path, there is a risk that the plants will cross-pollinate. If so, the seedlings may vary from the parent. Currant tomatoes and many large beefsteak varieties have stigmas that protrude beyond the anthers, so are particularly vulnerable to cross-pollination. This may not worry you, but if you plan to donate seeds to a seed exchange, isolate the Tomato seeds are coated with a gel that protects them from attack by seed-borne diseases, like bacterial spot and early blight (pp114-119), but also inhibits germination When preparing seeds for storage, you can remove the gel by fermentation.

Vegetativeness versus reproductiveness

Growing a successful tomato crop depends on the grower's ability to maintain an optimum balance between vegetativeness and reproduc-tiveness. Long, sustained fruit production is accomplished only under optimum environmental conditions and by timely application of water and nutrients. A well-balanced plant is judged by its thick stem, dark green leaves, and large, closely spaced, readily setting- flower clusters. A properly nourished plant should have a stem 1 cm thick at a point 15 cm below the growingpoint. Thicker stems are an indication of overvegetativeness and are usually associated with poor fruit set and low productivity. Thinner stems are an indication of overproductiveness, which leads into carbohydrate starvation, slow growth, and ultimately low productivity.

A little help from friends

From the main stems of tomato plants close enough to be beneficial, without competing with the tomatoes for nutrients. In a greenhouse or polytunnel, place pots of companions among the crop. Ideal plants to grow with tomatoes include basil, chives, onions, carrots, mint, and parsley. Marigolds, especially the French marigold (Tagetes patula), are thought to be particularly good at repelling whitefly (pp116-117) and even nematode pests that may be present in the soil. Marigolds are long-flowering plants and, like nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus), will attract many pollinators. The beautiful, blue-flowered herb, borage (Borago officinalis), is said to deter moths that may damage tomato plants (pp116-117).


Special composts arc available for propagating purposes. In the John limes range the seed compost is less coarse than the potting mixtures, while cutting composts usually contain a greater proportion of sand to improve soil aeration. In addition, there is a number ot proprietary cutting composts which in themselves have little or no food value but provide ideal conditions tor root initiation it is important to realize that the environment in which a plant is propagated can alfect its performance not only during the first few weeks and months but throughout its life. For example, lettuce plants raised with supplementary lighting during the winter months will ultimately develop lettuces with more leaves per plant than those raised at ordinary light levels and tomato plants that were raised at temperatures somewhat lower than the optimum 20 C (6y F) commonly have a smaller vield on the first three trusses,


The soil should be mulched when tomato plants are about 0.5 m high. Straw is the most common mulch material, but ground corn cobs are also acceptable. The mulch reduces evaporation and soil compaction. Also, when mulch is present, little soil is splashed onto plants during watering, thus avoiding dust in the greenhouse. Furthermore, mulch releases a considerable amount of carbon dioxide as it breaks down, which helps plant growth. Mulch also turns into useful organic matter after it is incorporated into the soil at the end of the cropping season. However, mulching with organic by-products gives rise to the well-known problems associated with the addition of any organic matter to intensely cultivated soils, as discussed earlier. In recent years, mulching has not been practiced widely instead, a white polyethylene film is used to cover the ground whenever the irrigation method permits it. This mulchingalternative has several advantages and is best practiced in conjuction with drip...

Preparing the soil

Late winter or early spring is the best time to prepare the soil for growing tomatoes. As well as homemade compost, you can use other organic materials such as well-rotted manure or composted bark. Clear the bed of any weeds first. If you don't want to disturb the soil structure, you can simply spread a 3in (7.5cm) layer of organic matter on the

The Cool Greenhouse

Poor Man Orchid

The cool greenhouse is one which is kept absolutely frost free and in which a minimum temperature of 4 C. (40 F.) is maintained. If the temperature is nearer to 10 C. (50 F.) so much the betler for many plants, excluding annuals which much prefer a temperature nearer 4 C. This kind of greenhouse is sheer delight for the adventurous gardener, for compared with the unhealed greenhouse the scope is wide indeed. There is no difficulty in having plants in flower during every month of the year. If you wish to make more practical use of such a house it is possible also to grow tomatoes during the summer months and letluces during (he winter.

Solanaceous Fruits

These fruits do best where they receive full sunlight. Peppers should be spaced about 18 inches apart in the row. Eggplants require a 24-inch spacing. Spacing to be left between tomato plants depends on the variety and the method of training. Staked tomato plants can be spaced about 18 inches apart. Unstaked plants need a 2- to 3-foot spacing. Tomato rows should be about 4 feet apart. A summer mulch helps conserve moisture and control weeds. Watering during dry periods contributes to producing a maximum crop of high-quality fruits. Staking tomato plants requires much time. The chief advantage is closer spacing of the plants, which permits more plants in a limited space. The yield per plant is actually reduced by staking. A stake should be driven into the ground near each plant when it is set in the ground. As the plant grows, lateral branches are removed as they form, and the stem is tied to the stake, using soft cloth strips or raffia. Some gardeners allow only one stem to develop....

Forked Trowel Mail

Growing tomatoes in cages allon s free circulation of air. discourages mildew and pests, and keep fruit off the ground and exposed to the sun. You'll enjoy a healthier tomato crop, earlier. Growing tomatoes in cages allon s free circulation of air. discourages mildew and pests, and keep fruit off the ground and exposed to the sun. You'll enjoy a healthier tomato crop, earlier.


What to do Physical barriers, such as aluminum foil wrapped around a 4-inch length of stem between leaves and roots may be used to protect newly set transplants. Baits, sprays or recommended insecticides may be needed. Avoid planting tomatoes in soil recently in grass or sod.

Duration Photoperiod

Single Truss Tomato Production

Tomatoes in the middle of winter made possible with the hydroponic method and a little artificial light. These six Matusalah variety tomato plants yielded 39 handball sized fruit, adding up to almost 8 pounds of tomatoes Not bad for a spare closet The plants were grown under a 400W MH lamp until they set their first truss of fruit. At that point, the lamp was changed to a high pressure sodium conversion and all growing tips were pruned to prevent the plants from outgrowing the space. I learned of this method (called STTP for Single Truss Tomato Production) at the Rutgers University website, however, in checking back recently it seems to have been removed. Do a Google search for more info Tomatoes in the middle of winter made possible with the hydroponic method and a little artificial light. These six Matusalah variety tomato plants yielded 39 handball sized fruit, adding up to almost 8 pounds of tomatoes Not bad for a spare closet The plants were grown under a 400W MH lamp until they...

Growing Vegetables

Interplanting and succession planting help utilize space efficiently. Radishes can be seeded with parsnips in the same row. The radishes will be ready to eat in a few weeks and will not interfere with the slower-growing parsnips. Tomato plants can be started between rows of peas. The peas will be harvested before the tomatoes need the space. Sweet corn can be planted at two-week intervals until early July to provide a longer period of harvest. Cool-season vegetables that have a short growing season, like lettuce and radishes, should be planted in midsummer for a fall crop. Space occupied by early vegetables that have been harvested can be worked up, fertilized, and replanted to a fall crop.

Macro Nutrients

Zinc Deficiency Cucumber Plants

Blossom End Rot (BER) in tomatoes is caused by a lack of calcium to the maturing fruit Often the cause of this problem is a sudden, intense heat wave which causes plants to transpire unusually fast and since Calcium is slow to travel through the plant, the result can be BER. Using shadecloth in the greenhouse during peak summer sun is a great way to control heat and prevent BER in tomato crops. Blossom End Rot (BER) in tomatoes is caused by a lack of calcium to the maturing fruit Often the cause of this problem is a sudden, intense heat wave which causes plants to transpire unusually fast and since Calcium is slow to travel through the plant, the result can be BER. Using shadecloth in the greenhouse during peak summer sun is a great way to control heat and prevent BER in tomato crops.


Tomato Greenhouse Diseases

Botrytis cmerea. ot giev moufd disease on tomato plant foliage arc no known means ot cure available to the amateur gardener, and any plant considered suspect should be isolated and removed for burning. An exception to this is the tomato plant, which is prone to a virus disease when at about the third truss stage with careful tending, however, tomato plants should survive this disease and go 011 to produce a reasonable crop.

Making a Choice

Oehme Van Sweden Plant Choices

My second greenhouse is of cedar wood construction, measures 13 ft. by 8 ft. and is double glared. This double glazing reduces the cost of heating to lesi than 50 per cent, of that expended on the metal greenhouse. Because of the high cost of manufacturing these double-glazed greenhouses they are not. unfortunately, on sale any longer but the same effect can be achieved hv lining an ordinary greenhouse with thin polythene sheeting available for this purpose. This greenhouse has glass to the ground and one side is used for growing tomatoes during the summer months and chrysanthemums during the winter. Hippeastrums and orchids enjoy the shade under the tomatoes in the summer months, while on the opposite side of the house pelargoniums (geraniums). begonias, fuchsias, lmpaiiens

Get grafting

Grafting is a way of joining two plants together so that they benefit from each other's strengths. It is fairly simple to carry out and is ideal if a particular tomato plant does not usually grow well for you. Grafting allows a tomato variety to take on advantageous qualities of another tomato plant, usually a more robust species or variety. By grafting your chosen variety onto a rootstock, it is possible to promote growth, increase fruit quality and yield, and confer other benefits such as tolerance of low temperatures and resistance to soil-borne diseases. You may buy seeds of tomato rootstocks, such as 'KNVF,' 'Beaufort,' and 'Brigeor.' Alternatively, use any tomato plant that you have found to be particularly resilient in your garden. 3 Cut a healthy shoot from your chosen tomato plant. It should have a stem of a similar width to the rootstock.

Growing methods

Growing Strawberries Plastic Pipe

To use all available space, pot-gcown sweet peppers may be grown between tomato plants. The tomato plant needs moist atmospheric conditions lor a short while each day to assist fruit setting, and this is best achieved by spraying over the plants with a syringe, preferably early in the day. You should water the plants by hand two or three Right above Tomato plants need to be supported by siring (as here) or by a stale Right below Tomato side shoots should be removed when small Do this early m the morning, when the plants are turgid

Pruning and Training

Certain herbaceous plants benefit from pruning. A tall, leggy coleus or geranium plant can be made full and rounded by pruning the tip of the stem, thus removing the apical dominance and forcing lateral buds to develop. By pinching the tips of the stems on a chrysanthemum plant in the spring, lateral branches form. This produces a fuller plant with more flowering stems. Larger blooms are produced on peonies and dahlias if lateral buds are removed. Tomato plants are often tied to stakes. This requires that lateral branches be removed as they form.

Crop rotation

Year Crop Rotations

If you grow tomatoes as part of a larger vegetable plot, you might want to include them in a crop rotation plan, along with the other vegetable crops, to protect them from pests and diseases. To follow a four-year crop rotation, divide the vegetable garden into four areas. On the first plot, grow tomatoes and other members of the same (Solanaceae) family, such as eggplant and potatoes. You can also include root crops, such as carrots and beets, with this group. In the second year, move the tomatoes and roots to the second plot, It is traditional to follow legumes with nitrogen-hungry brassicas, such as cabbages and broccoli, before using the same ground for tomatoes and root crops again. If possible, grow tomatoes and potatoes with a buffer zone of plants between them.


Most gardeners grow tomatoes for three main purposes slicing, snacks, and sauce. Some of my favorite standard, round, slicing tomato varieties include Celebrity and Early Girl (red), Brandywine (pink), Lemon Boy (yellow), Big Rainbow (striped yellow and red), and Big Beef (red). For snacking, I like cherry-tomato varieties Sun Gold (gold), Super Sweet 100 (red), Sweet Million (red), and Yellow Pear (yellow). My favorite plum tomatoes, which I use to make sauce, include Amish Paste, Roma, Bellstar, Heinz 2653, and Viva Italia. Care Mulching with black landscape fabric in cool areas helps speed the growth of tomato plants. Tomatoes need fertile soil, so amend the soil with compost before planting and then side-dress plants monthly with a complete fertilizer. Keep the plants mulched and well watered to prevent blossom-end rot (discoloration and decay on the end opposite the stem) as fruits mature.


Tomato Plant

The varieties available and are well-adapted for use in most areas. The initials V, F, and N refer to disease resistance some varieties are resistant to verticillium (V), fusarium (F), and or nematodes (N). If you've never had any problem with any of these, you can try any variety. If you have had difficulty growing tomatoes in the past you'll do better to stay with resistant varieties. Tomato plants take up a lot of space if you let them sprawl. A strong stake supports the plant and keeps the fruit dean. Tomato plants take up a lot of space if you let them sprawl. A strong stake supports the plant and keeps the fruit dean. by the size and shape of their fruit (currant, cherry, plum, pear, etc.), by their color (red, pink, orange, yellow, and cream), and by their use (eating, canning, pickling). When you're short on garden space, grow tomatoes in a large pot or container. Dwarf tomatoes can be grown in one cubic foot of soil, and standard tomatoes can be grown in two to three cubic...


Haws Fine Rain Watering

Watering tomato plants using a wand. Eventually the watering process will become automatic, and you will not have to think about when the bed has received enough water you will know intuitively when the point has been reached. Remember to allow for the different natures of plants. Squash plants, for instance, will want a lot of water in comparison to tomato plants. One way to determine whether you have watered enough is to go out the next morning and poke your finger into the bed. if the soil is evenly moist for the

Peat bags

Plastic bags filled with a peat-based medium are now generally available. Each peat bag, which measures 35 cm x 105 cm when flat and contains 42 L of fertilized peat (or a mixture of peat with vermiculite, perlite, or polystyrene), can support up to three tomato plants as long as regular watering and fertilizing through a drip irrigation system are provided. Anyone considering peat substrate culture of greenhouse tomatoes for the first time is aware that watering requires considerable managerial effort and a dependable irrigation system, and might well decide that the risk of mistakes does not justify the change from soil to peat substrates. However, the fact that water management errors in substrate culture are quickly manifested into visible symptoms makes peat substrate and other soilless culture systems attractive. In soil culture, incorrect watering

Pests and diseases

Most modern F1 hybrid tomato plants are relatively disease resistant, as commercial plant breeders work to improve resistance to a number of fungal and other pathogens. Verticillium and fusarium wilts, for example, are soil-borne diseases that cause yellowing of the leaves, wilting, and premature death of plants. Once they build up in the soil, the only practical control is the use of resistant varieties, such as 'Roma' (p65), which are often designated by the letters VF in seed catalogs. VFN indicates a variety, such as 'Lemon Boy' (p35), that is also resistant to root-knot nematodes, wormlike pests that live in the soil. There are few blight-tolerant plants, although 'Ferline' (p23) and 'Legend' (p55) are particularly disease resistant. Compacted, poorly drained soil stresses the plants, so prepare the soil well (pp88-89). Practice crop rotation (pp102-103) to avoid growing tomatoes after crops in the same family, which are prone to the same diseases. Eradicate weeds, particularly...

The flower

Tomato Flowering Truss Detail

The tomato truss is composed of a succession of axils, each bearing a single flower (Fig. 5). The main stem of the truss (peduncle) is capable of branching one or more times such branched (or double) trusses can be encouraged by low-temperature treatment, a procedure discussed later. Branching is desirable because it usually increases the number of flowers per truss and allows the number of flowers on each branch to remain fairly constant, irrespective of the degree of branching (Fig. 5). The characteristically bright yellow flowers of the cultivated tomato usually have five sepals (constituting the calyx) and five petals (constituting the corolla) although six or more such segments are possible (Fig. 6).

Flowers for cutting

The main salad crops - lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, radishes, and spring onions are grown in the greenhouse borders, and no benching is necessary. Tomatoes are one of the main summer crops and as such occupy the greenhouse from April or May through to September and even October. While the tomato plants are stilt small it is possible to grow a quick-maturing crop ot early radishes between them. Although lettuces are often the crop to occupy the borders from October to April, their cultivation is not easy but they mature at a time of high prices so they are well worth while. They can be cleared in time to allow you to prepare your borders for planting tomatoes. It is possible to get two crops of lettuce in winter in the south of England if soil-warming cables arc used. To make the best use ot the greenhouse, erect temporary shelving in the spring to provide propagating space for a wide range of Other crops. Salad crops grow particularly well in polythene-covered greenhouses,...


Cara Stek Rosemary

Plant tomato plants into soil beds or containers when they are 6-12in (15-30cm) tall, with well-developed, healthy rootballs. Moist (not soggy) rootballs slip out of pots more easily. When you are transferring young tomato plants into containers such as pots, hanging baskets, or growing bags, you need to observe the same basic principles as for planting (pp98-99). You may wish to plant a trailing or dwarf tomato plant into a hanging basket. Keep it Tomato plants in pots and growing bags need a sturdy support system of canes and twine, stakes, or wires on fencing or walls. Bamboo canes are often used, but they may not be able to cope with the weight of some of the more vigorous plants. Opt for stakes in this instance. You can help to hold canes upright in growing bags by tying the top of each cane to a greenhouse strut or some other strong support outdoors such as a trellis.


An ordinary egg carton will serve as a homemade nursery for raising seedlings to transplant. Any egg box will do, but the waterproof, plastic type is best. This will start you off with as many as twelve tomato plants, or any other type of seedling you wish to raise. If you use vermi-culite or perlite as the growing medium in your nursery, the amount that clings to the roots when you transplant will not harm the effectiveness of the medium in your main unit. Don't be afraid to insert both the root system and the stem of your transplant up to the first set of leaves in the growing medium. The stem will develop root hairs, and a stronger plant will result.


Hydroponic 10000 Heads Lettuce Week

Any plants that will successfully root from cuttings can be placed directly into your soilless garden. Clean the leaves from the last two inches of stem, and, if possible, coat the stem with a root hormone. This procedure is not as useful with vegetables as it is with some herbs and decorative plants. Still, it is not only fun, but free, to collect a few cuttings from your friends. The possibilities are endless. For example, one good trick with tomatoes is to let a few suckers grow on a plant until they are three or four inches long, cut them off at the base and stick them deeply into your growing medium. That way, you'll have more tomato plants. Seed tomatoes for the early and late outdoor crop as shown here. Use a similar seeding pattern even if you use less than half of a planter. Plant the seeds for your early tomato crop in February or March indoors under lights and move them outdoors in April or May. Fan out the plants on your balcony or patio using strings or trellises as shown...

Toughening up

Young tomato plants may be planted outside once all danger of frost has passed, but those started off in a protected environment will need a transition period to get them used to the conditions outdoors. Hardiness, or ability to withstand cold, is a complex quality in plants. No tomato plants are able to withstand frost, but their ability to cope with cool conditions varies. Some plants such as 'Sub-Arctic Plenty' (p34) can set fruit under quite cool conditions, but others will need shelter to create a favorable microclimate. You can use a cold frame or cloche as a halfway haven for hardening off young tomato plants, between indoors and out.


Half of Vancouver Island's tomato crop and one-fifth of Moscow's are hydroponically produced. There are full-fledged hydroponic systems in American nuclear submarines, Russian space stations and on offshore drillings rigs. Large zoos keep their animals healthy with hydroponic green food, and race horses stay sleek and powerful on grass grown hydroponically year round. There are large and small systems used by companies and individuals as far north as Baffin Island and Eskimo Point in Canada's Arctic. Commercial growers are using this marvellous technique to produce food on a large scale from Israel to India, and from Armenia to the Sahara.


For a tomato plant to form a fruit, the stigma, or female part of a flower, must be fertilized by viable pollen. This will occur naturally with assistance from insects and wind, but you can help too Cultivated tomato plants are self-fertile they can fertilize flowers with their own pollen. When the flower opens, pollen falls from the anthers, or male parts of the flower, onto the stigma. If the atmosphere is too dry, pollen will not stick to the stigma in very wet conditions, pollen is not released from the anthers. Busy bees Insects, such as the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris), play a vital role in pollination. As they collect nectar, they fly from plant to plant and distribute pollen. Many commercial units utilize this by installing colonies of bumblebees in cardboard hives among the tomato crops.

Plants Healthy

Q If you are a smoker, always wash your hands before handling tomato plants some virus diseases ol tobacco can he transmitted by hand. C3 Sterilize all used plant pots and boxes with a weak solution of formaldehyde (not forgetting the crocks that go in the pots). Do this outside, and allow the containers to dry before returning them to the greenhouse, Q Know your enemies learn to identify all the common greenhouse pests and diseases at an early stage. Q Use sterilized seed and potting composts, If a compost is being re-used do not grow the same species in it. O 1 lave a 'clean* area in the greenhouse where clean pots, boxes, and potting materials cannot become contaminated. Always brush down the potting bench after use,


From two transcription factor families (Schijlen et al. 2004). Consequently, overexpression of Lc and C1, two transcription factors that control flavonoid biosynthesis in maize, resulted in tomato fruit containing 20-fold higher flavonol content than the respective control. In a similar approach, Butelli et al. (2008) expressed the Del and Ros1 genes from snapdragon in the fruit of transgenic tomatoes. Both genes encode transcription factors that interact with each other to induce anthocyanin biosynthesis in snapdragon flowers. The fruit of the transgenic tomato plants accumulated anthocyanins at levels substantially higher than previously reported. Evidence for a health promoting effect of these engineered tomato fruits comes from a pilot study in which a cancer-susceptible mouse strain showed a significant extension of life span when fed on high-anthocyanin tomatoes (Butelli et al. 2008).

Cropping in sawdust

In the 1950s and 1960s the Saanichton and Agassiz research stations developed a method of cropping greenhouse tomatoes in sawdust. This method received general commercial acceptance in British Columbia, and to some extent in Alberta, in the 1970s and 1980s, but it is now being replaced by rockwool. Some of the advantages of sawdust culture are its low cost, light weight, and the wide availability of sawdust itself. Although rockwool also claims some of these qualities, sawdust could again receive renewed attention because it is easier to dispose of than rockwool. Table 16 Fertigation schedule for tomato production in peat bags (in kilograms of fertilizer per 1000 L of stock solution) Table 16 Fertigation schedule for tomato production in peat bags (in kilograms of fertilizer per 1000 L of stock solution) The fertilizer rates described in Table 17 are recommended for tomato production in unfertilized sawdust. The fertilizer rates described in Table 18 are recommended for tomato...

The plant

Thanksgiving Decorations

The tomato plant is a short-lived annual that thrives in temperate regions. Plants grow very differently, so don't worry about not having enough space there is a plant for every sized pot (or plot ) Tomato plants range in height from tiny plants just 6in (15cm) tall to vines that can reach 30ft (10m), although 8ft (2.5m) is usual. There are three main growth habits dwarf, bush, and cordon. Tomato plants are often classed as either heirloom or hybrid varieties. There are many definitions of these terms, with some people maintaining that heirloom plants must have been grown for at least 50 years (or even 100 years). Others argue that true heirlooms are those that have been passed down through generations of a single family. Many so-called heirlooms are recent creations but have attracted the title, as they are unlikely to be commercially successful, and so their survival depends on gardeners saving their seeds. In this book, the term heirloom is used in its widest sense to refer to any...

Sil preparation

Li it can be so arranged, you should rotate crops in the borders tor example, grow tomatoes in the cast border in year one, in the west border in year two, and in the north border in year three. If the benching is fitted down one side only, move it to the other side every other year.

Diversified Planting

Many insects attack plants belonging to a certain species or family and reject unrelated ones. For example, striped cucumber beetles enjoy cucumber, squash and melons (cucurbit family) and are not a pest of corn or beans. Thus, do not plant all those cucurbits or others of the same group in one place in the garden if you can avoid it. If you have many tomato plants, do not put them all in the same location. Insects that begin to attack a particular vegetable often will spread to similar neighboring plants. You may be able to reduce your losses if you do not put all of one group in the same location. Groups of related vegetables are as follows

The leaves

Most gardeners do not consider the foliage of the tomato plant, but the leaves of some are quite distinctive and can cause the plant to have an increased resistance to disease. Potato-leafed plants, such as 'Hillbilly Potato Leaf' (p53), may have a few lobes on their leaves, but generally the edges are smooth. They are slightly thicker than those of regular tomato plants, and they therefore may be more resistant to some diseases. leaves. The plant 'Variegated,' thought to have originated in Ireland, has leaves irregularly splashed with cream. Most attractive for their foliage are plants such as 'Elberta Girl' and 'Velvet Red' (p43) these have leaves so densely covered in silvery hairs that they are quite furry to the touch. This type of leaf is sometimes called an angora leaf, after the tomato variety of that name. It is important to keep an eye on the foliage of your tomato plants as they grow, because the first signs of many problems can occur there (pp114-117).

Graywater Systems

But because of the thick growth of tomato plants that cascaded down the slope below the drain. I asked the owner why he would plant a garden in such an unlikely location, and he replied that he didn't plant it at all the tomatoes were volunteers the seeds sprouted from human excretions. He admitted that whenever he needed a tomato for his restaurant, he didn't have to go far to get one. This is not an example of sanitary wastewater recycling, but it is an example of how wastewater can be put to constructive use, even by accident.

Plant improvement

Traditionally, the oldest and simplest way to improve tomatoes was to save seed from plants that had desirable characters, e.g., high yield, good flavor. This approach leads to crop improvement only when there is genetic diversity to begin with and the plants breed true (i.e., desirable characters are transferred unaltered from generation to generation). In recent years the cultivated tomato has been improved greatly by many cross-breeding techniques. Most frequently, new Fi hybrids are created by crossing preexisting cultivars or pure lines bred for that purpose (Fig. 2). This method is based on the breeder's skill in selecting the parents that should be crossed in order to produce a good hybrid and provides a convenient way of obtaining desirable combinations of characters from the parents. However, Fi hybrids do not breed true, and so each crop must be raised from fresh hybrid seed produced every year from the parental lines. Thus, the seed company that has the parents has a...

Food and drink

Like people, plants cannot exist without water, so make sure your tomato plants have enough to drink. Food is important too, and can boost your tomato crop. But with both food and drink, balance is key. sunny conditions, a typical tomato plant needs about 3 4 quart (11 2 pints) of water per day. This varies greatly, depending on the type and state of the soil or mix and how well it drains, the stage of growth of the plant, and the weather. Container-grown plants need plenty of water because their roots cannot spread far. Feel the soil below the surface with your finger to see if it needs water. Plants grown in open, well-nourished soil usually yield a good tomato crop without additional feeding. For the best crop from plants in pots or growing bags, feed them regularly after the first truss of fruit has set. Nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), potassium (K), and calcium (Ca) are the most important minerals in tomato fertilizer.

How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

Interested In Canning Juicy Tomatoes? Here's How You Can Prepare Canned Tomatoes At Home. A Comprehensive Guide On Tomato Canning. The process of canning tomatoes at home has been a family tradition with many generations. Making home canned or home tinned tomatoes is something that is remembered by families for years! You must have surely seen your granny canning tomatoes at home in order to prepare for the approaching winters. In winters, one is usually unsure of getting fresh tomatoes.

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