HOW TO GROW TOMATOES IN POTS Even Without a Garden
People have been growing tomatoes in their gardens for years, and if you’ve ever wanted to grow your tomatoes by yourself but don’t have enough space for a garden or live in an apartment, you should consider growing tomato plants in a pot. And if you don’t know how to grow tomatoes in pots.
A single tomato plant in a pot has the potential to yield a large amount of fruit under the right conditions. Simply growing them in a location where they will get at least 6 to 8 hours of natural sunlight each day and providing enough water will do the trick. Despite being one of the most widely grown edible plants, growing tomatoes in containers can be very difficult.
With the correct method and proper knowledge on how to grow tomatoes in pots, you can overcome all these difficulties, and to help you plant tomatoes in pots, we’ll tell you everything you need to know.
Let us get started,
How to start growing tomato plants in pots?
The best position of your tomato pots
To start growing tomato plants in pots, you have to be sure that the area you select to grow your tomatoes in receives at least eight to ten hours of sunlight each day; six hours is the absolute minimum, but more is much preferable. Tomato plants love sunlight and flourish best when you grow tomatoes in containers or pots that receive direct sunlight. If your place doesn’t receive enough sunlight, you can consider growing cherry tomatoes in pots as they grow smaller than most types of tomatoes and require less sunlight to flourish.
Choosing the Pot for your tomato plant
Pot size for tomatoes varies from species to species of tomato plants.
Many types of tomato plants grow entirely different from each other. For example, ‘Micro Tom‘ grows to be about a foot tall and can be potted in six-inch-diameter containers, and ‘Sun Gold‘ can reach over seven feet in height and requires a large 5 to 7-gallon container.
Before choosing the Pot for the tomato plant, you have to choose which type of tomato you will grow in the Pot. Most planters prefer to grow smaller tomato species such as grape, cherry, and Roma.
These varieties bear fruit earlier and need less protection and training to support big fruit. Knowing the species of a tomato plant you will grow is as important as knowing how to grow tomato plants in pots.
Make sure to match the pot size to the size of the tomato plant when it is fully mature. A slightly bigger pot would be even better. When you’ve found the ideal-sized Pot, turn it over and look for drainage holes.
Make sure the Pot you are using should have more than one drainage hole; if not. You’ll need to add more holes because tomatoes need good drainage.
Buying the seeds for growing tomato plants:
When you have decided which species of tomato you want to grow, you can purchase seeds from local nurseries, online seed exchanges, or other gardeners. Additionally, you can purchase seeds in a department store’s garden section.
If you want to get seeds from a tomato, you must have at least one tomato per plant to collect seeds from it. Confirm that the tomato came from a plant cultivated from heirloom or open-pollinated seeds.
The results might not be as impressive if you select tomatoes from a hybrid plant or perhaps a plant with chemically processed seeds.
Preparing soil for tomato plants in pots
Tomato plants require different amounts of nutrients during different growth cycles, and the soil you provide to your tomato plants in pots must have the proper nutrients.
Planting bed soil can be considered, but it is typically too heavy for containers, over-compacting, and possibly containing harmful microorganisms.
Growing tomatoes in pots can reduce outbreaks because tomatoes are prone to diseases and pests that can live in the soil. You can either buy a high-quality sterile potting mix or make your potting soil that has been enriched with drainage and aeration materials.
This will limit the spread of soil diseases from garden soil and prevent the soil from becoming compacted. If the fertilizer is not in the soil, you can use fertilizer for tomato plants.
Knowledge about preparing the soil for tomatoes is as essential as knowing how to grow tomatoes in pots before starting to grow tomato plants.
Most of the things a plant needs for survival come from the soil. So the soil you grow your plant in must have everything your plant needs.
How to prepare potting soil for tomatoes planted?
To prepare potting soil for tomatoes, watch the video below or follow the method given below.
- Get the soil for your tomato plants in pots.
- Pick a spot anywhere that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. Make sure the location you choose for your tomato plants receives enough sunlight for the plants to flourish and bear fruit.
- Look for a location that has proper drainage and doesn’t flood frequently.
- Before you begin digging, wait until the soil is parched. Dig about 8 to 10 inches (20 to 25 cm) into the ground.
- To remove the dirt, use a tiller or a shovel. Dig down far enough to eliminate any top-layer grasses or plants and their root systems.
- If you find any rocks or other objects in the soil, remove them. While digging up the soil, keep an eye out for any sticks, broken roots, or other debris. Anything that is not dirt should be removed.
- It would be best if you broke up the large soil clods. Break up hard earth clumps into softer dirt using your palms or a garden hoe. When you plant tomato plants, large clumps of hard soil may make it more difficult for the roots to crack the soil.
- Now to make the best soil for tomatoes in containers, you will have to do some adulteration with pH value and nutrients.
Knowing your soil’s pH level is crucial because different plants require different pH levels to thrive. Knowing the nutrient levels will also help you decide what nutrients to add to the soil to promote the growth of tomato plants.
Take a small portion of the soil you intend to plant your tomatoes and test it using a commercial testing kit.
The ideal pH range for tomatoes is between 6.2 and 6.8, and they thrive in slightly acidic soil.
To produce many nutritious fruits, your tomato plants must have an equal distribution of potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen.
Your tomato plants’ health can be impacted by having too much of one nutrient. If the soil’s pH level is below 6.2, you can add crushed egg shells to it to increase the pH level.
If the soil’s pH level is above 6.8, then you can add coffee to the soil to decrease its pH level. After modifying the pH level of your soil, you should retest your soil.
Add fertilizers for nutrients.
The nutrient levels will also help you decide what nutrients to add to the soil to promote the growth of tomato plants. After testing the soil, you can see the nutrient content of your soil and use the best fertilizer for tomato plants in pots for yourself according to the variety of tomato plants you are growing and your nutrient requirements.
You can use homemade fertilizers for tomatoes in a container or buy one of the best fertilizers for tomatoes in containers.
If you have difficulty choosing the best fertilizer for tomato plants, we have shortlisted the best tomato fertilizers available online.
To choose the most accurate fertilizer for your tomato plants, Read our well-researched article on THE BEST FERTILIZERS FOR TOMATOES.
Planting tomato seeds in pots
Six to eight weeks before the last frost, start indoor tomato plants from seeds. Start your tomato seedlings indoors while it’s still chilly outside to prepare them for outdoor transplanting.
Young seedlings can experience stunted growth or die in early spring due to cool temperatures.
To increase your chances of production, start your seedlings indoors. Fill the pots with fertilized soil mix. Just remember to water it first before planting tomato seeds—plant two or three seeds 1/4 inch deep into the soil in each Pot. Place soil on top to cover the seeds, then lightly press down.
Until germination takes place, keep the containers in a room at 21–27°C. Move the seeds into direct sunlight or grow lights once they have begun to sprout. For the first seven to ten days, mist the seeds every day. Reduce the frequency of watering once you see sprouts.
After the plants sprout, water sparingly because too much watering (which rots the roots) kills more plants than too little watering, the seeds can also be soaked flat in water to hydrate the roots from the bottom up. The roots might not receive enough water from misting. Look over your plants each day. The plants will overgrow once they poke their heads out of the soil.
Now you know everything about how to grow tomatoes in pots. Growing tomatoes in a pot are both cost-effective and rewarding. There are many species of tomato plants to grow in pots. Even if you live in an apartment or don’t have enough space, you can consider growing cherry tomato plants in a pot. Growing tomatoes from seeds give you the advantage of growing different varieties of tomatoes together.
It is essential to provide enough nutrients, choose a pot that is perfect in size, and water tomato plants in pots two times daily to get delicious red fruity tomatoes.