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Find Out How To Avoid Tomato Growing Problems

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Author: Kaye Dennan

Tomato growing is one of the most popular hobbies for home gardeners. The taste of a freshly picked sweet tomato is a real thrill for a keen gardener and for this reason, and because they are such prolific producers, tomatoes are grown in many countries worldwide. Tomato growing does, unfortunately come with some problems though, so knowing how to avoid some of these problems at the outset will help produce much better fruit at the end.

Check before planting.

The actual preparation of the soil, the timing of planting and the planting process are all important to the success of the tomato crop. Staggering the planting of tomato plants is one way that growers are able to have a longer harvesting season. Choosing the right tomato varieties to do this is also part of the success of having a longer picking season. There are some varieties of tomatoes that only take 65 days to produce fruit whilst others may take up to 85 days, so by selecting the right combination of varieties the gardener will be given a longer picking period.

Tomatoes need warmth to help them grow and to ripen the fruit. Before planting tomatoes, growers need to ensure that the soil temperature in their area is at least 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature during the day should also be 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit and the temperature at night should be between 65 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

Timing of planting.

Because tomato plants are so reliant on warmth to produce fruit, even if the plant is put in the ground very early in the season the fruit still only starts to ripen at the peak of the summer with the full harvest following on from that time. The tomatoes will stop ripening as soon as the first frosts arrive as they just will not tolerate frosts.

Warmer climates offer the home gardener a chance to grow tomatoes over a much longer period becuase they get 6 to 8 hours of sunlight well into the winter period.

Growing tomatoes from seed.

If growing from seed then these can be sewn indoors in seed trays, 6 - 8 weeks prior to the planned planting time outside. Read our article "Growing Tomatoes From Seeds" which describes in detail how to start growing tomato plants from seed and the steps that need to be taken to ensure a successful transplant.

Growing container tomatoes.

Container grown tomatoes is a popular way to follow the sun during the day if the climate where you live is not generous with the sunlight. Container growing does give the gardener a chance to move the pots around to make sure the tomato plants get enough sunlight. Growing tomatoes upside down is also a popular way to grow in containers.

Sunlight is critical to the success of tomato growing but the soil mix is also important. The ground needs to be well tilled and with a slightly acid level of around pH 6.0 to 6.8. Although tomatoes are known to grow in many different types of soil, one high in organic matter, light and well drained is considered to be the best.

When using these tomato growing tips to avoid some of the main problems of tomato planting, the home gardener will have a much better chance of enjoying a lovely crop at the end of the growing season.

Copyright (c) 2010 Kaye Dennan

About the author: Why not sign up to our 10 part FREE mini-course 'Luscious Tomatoes' where you will learn so much more about growing those beautiful tomatoes you have always wanted to grow. Just visit

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