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Tomatoes



Tomatoes are a common favorite garden vegetable/fruit and can produce an abundant harvest from spring to late summer.

You may wonder how in the world can you grow full-sized tomato plants in a pot? Well it's simpler than you think. Yes you need a fairly good-sized pot, but his can be obtained very easily.

Choosing a Container

Choosing approximately a 25-30 gallon container should work well. The size of this container will allow you to grow most any full-sized tomato to optimum growth. Only one or two plants to a container however. Light colored containers are your best choice because in certain hotter climates the darker the container the more heat it absorbs the more likely it will burn the roots.

Proper drainage is important to prevent root rot. By drilling holes into the bottom of the container you will allow for proper drainage. For pots this size a hole about ĺ inch in diameter is probably sufficient. By covering the holes with screen will prevent the soil from falling out of the bottom of holes this size. It is not a good idea to set the pot directly on the ground, so by raising the pot above ground level this will keep diseases from possibly entering your pot and destroying your tomato plants.


Sunlight

Be sure to set your pot in a sunny area. Tomatoes require approximately 6-8 hours of direct sunlight a day for optimum growth and production. When temperatures are high in certain areas of the country itís also beneficial for the plant if it gets some afternoon shade.

Planting

Once your container is in place, fill to within 2 inches of the pot with potting soil. Mix a controlled release fertilizer into the top 3 inches of the soil to feed your plants entirely through the summer. Feeding with supplements is recommended for longer growing season in different areas. After planting your tomatoes, set up your cage to support them as they grow.

Care and Feeding

The top soil should be dry 3-4 inches deep before watering. Stop watering when you see water drainage coming out of the bottom of the pot. When your tomatoes start fruiting water daily, especially on hot days. When the branches go beyond the cage tuck them inside the cage. Pruning is beneficial in cooler climates for maximum fruit production but in warmer climates it is not necessary to prune because the leaves shade the fruit. When fall comes be sure and harvest all your tomatoes before the first frost. You can eat them as fried green tomatoes or set them in a box to ripen.

Great tomato recipes: http://site.hgandg.com/topsyturvys/recipes.htm


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