How I Grow My Best Tomatoes.

by Mark G.
(Lansing, IL)

Growing Tomatoes is actually very easy but you must provide 3 basic items. Good Soil, Plenty of Sunshine and Water.

When planting tomatoes the soil must be rich in humus with good drainage. I believe a Five gallon container provides on of the best ways to grow tomatoes. The container must have good drainage (holes in the bottom). The soil must be of a good quality, I prefer to use a mixture of 50% potting soil and 50% top soil mixed together well. I also add about a 1/4 cup of time released fertilizer to the soil mixture.

When I plant my tomatoes I tear off the bottom couple of leaves and plant the tomato plant tilted on it's side, the little hairs on the stem will help to form a strong root system. The Pot should be placed in a location where it will receive at east 8 hours of sunshine (southern Exposure is the best). The plants also need heat to really start their growth. If it is cool outside protect the plants for the wind by wrapping them on the sides with light colored fabric.)

Plants need to be watered regularly (give them a good soaking 3 times a weeks of every other day). Inconsistant watering may cause stress on the plants or cracks on the fruit. As the plants grow many will need staking to support the weight of the fruit as they grow. A simple wood stake 2 -3 feet long works good, Just use twine or loose yard to tie up the plant. The plants will grow better in warm weather.

It is best to let the tomatoes ripen on the plant. For the best flavor serve at room temperature or only slightly chilled.

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