tomato plant spacing in pots

tomato plant spacing in pots

From balconies, to patios, to fire escapes, to rooftops, you can grow tomatoes anywhere when you plant a tomato container garden. Spacing Your Tomatoes in Containers. 1. Any warm, sunny spot will do. Planting several plants in one pot might seem like a good idea, but it usually is counterproductive. For example, for a typical tapered pot you should bend the bottom of the legs of the cage in towards each other a bit. However, in order to make sure your plant will have enough room to grow unencumbered, we recommend a pot of 17 to 20 inches in diameter, and that can hold up to 20 gallons. Grow. (Find a good selection of garden containers here and here.). Keep in mind, large indeterminate tomato plants require at least 2-3 feet (60-90cm) between plants when grown in the ground. Remember to leave enough space (1 to 3 feet) between your tomato plants. 1cm ... To grow tomatoes successfully, you need rich, fertile soil or peat-free potting compost, and a good sunny, sheltered spot. Tie the branches loosely. Determinate tomatoes can be planted 1.5-2′ (0.48 – 0.61m) between tomato plants, and space rows 2-3′ (0.61-0.91m) apart. Alternatively, you could cut a sheet of metal netting and wrap it around your tomato plant for support. If your tomato plant is receiving too much rain, flooding the plant and water-logging the soil, move the container to a sheltered area to protect it. However, as tomatoes require adequate amount of soil and space, you’ll need to know how much tomatoes you can possibly plant in a container. There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. Tomatoes can be challenging to grow in containers, but they continue to rate among the most popular summer vegetables. The structure and limited space actually encourage upward growth for this vining plant, and once you combine an honest tomato pot with a trellis or cage, you’ve got a recipe for successful, tasty tomatoes this summer. Borage Borage is supposed to protect tomatoes from tomato hornworms, but the science behind that has yet to be proven. If you put supports that touch the plant outside of the pot, just be aware that this may create a new way for pests to reach your tomatoes. A best watering practice is to water plants in the morning to provide moisture all day and enable the foliage to dry. The Spruce uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. By inserting the stake into the pot before the plant is fully grown, you’ll avoid disturbing the root system when it is bigger. Pictured below are three tomatoes planted side-by-side in two self-watering containers, supported by strings attached to an overhead frame. You want at least five gallons of soil per plant. A great benefit to growing tomatoes in containers is portability; you can move the containers to take advantage of the best growing conditions. Otherwise, depending on your climate, 2-3 times a week may be sufficient. Placing a large cage, stake, or tripod around a very tiny plant can look a little funny at first. As plants grow, they will require one tablespoon of Epsom salt per foot of height per month. A great benefit to growing tomatoes in containers is portability; you can move the containers to take advantage of the best growing conditions. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 39,933 times. The bigger your plant pot, the better in regards to tomatoes. Bury the roots and a few inches of the stem of a young tomato plant in the potting mix. Otherwise, depending on your climate, 2-3 times a week may be sufficient. Containers - the larger the container, the easier it will be to look after the plants. Tomatoes are split into two main growing types: determinate (bush) and indeterminate … If you’re planting multiple tomatoes in pots, leave space between containers to help with air circulation. Sunlight for Tomatoes in Containers. You could also insert stakes around the inside edge of the pot and then tie rope or wire diagonally between the stakes. These are harder to find than round tomato cages, but are usually available at specialty nurseries and garden stores. Gently pinch or snip off the lowest sets of leaves until you’re left with a bare stem on the bottom one-third to one-half of the stem. The seam where the 2 sides meet can be tied together with twine or rope. Water regularly and feed weekly with a high-potash fertiliser once the plants start to flower. To learn how to hold up individual tomatoes, read more from our Gardening co-author! When the space is confining, the roots may end up growing at the fringes of the pot and cause your plant to become root-bound, which will affect the absorbing capacity of your tomato plant. If you are growing dwarf variety space them 1-2 feet apart. When the space is confining, the roots may end up growing at the fringes of the pot and cause your plant to become root-bound, which will affect the absorbing capacity of your tomato plant. The important thing is to not overcrowd the plants: they need room to grow. Select the biggest pot as possible for your container tomatoes. And one or two plants will provide a family of four with enough tomatoes for the summer. If you see the middle stem leaning to the side, tie it to the support frame to straighten it out. Don’t be tempted to put more than one plant per five gallons of soil. If you plan to use the same pots to grow anything in the tomato family (think tomatoes peppers, eggplants, potatoes) during the following season, you’ll want to start with fresh soil. Large branches will get heavy and begin to sag, even if they are already supported part way down their length. Vine tomatoes are climbers, but need support, either stakes in a garden bed or loose ties around a wire fence or a pole, such as one holding up a pergola, or even your clothes line post. The Spruce / K. Dave Not Enough Sun . 10 Flavorful Tomatoes for Small Spaces. Containers are particularly useful if you don't have in-ground garden space; containers can be placed on a balcony, porch, patio, driveway, or deck. She earned a BA in Environmental and Sustainability Studies from Western Michigan University in 2014. These can typically be supported by a small tomato cage. Without adequate water, tomato plants will become stressed and be more susceptible to pests and diseases. If you’re using a large basket, you may be able to plant more. You should remember that this variety requires a large container. If it’s too tall, you can trim the legs to fit into the pot better. Growing tomatoes in fabric pots is one way to maximize your growing area. I mean, tomato plants don’t take up much space around them since they tend to grow straight up. As the plant grows, pull the stems toward the stake and loosely tie with twine. Unless you are planting dwarf or patio varieties, add a plant stake or tomato cage for support. Determinate plants only grow to about 3 feet (0.91 m) tall. Just know that your plant will grow into the support system and will rely on it at is develops. Typically, you can grow two dwarf tomatoes in a 5-gallon bucket. For a steady harvest over summer, have a series of pots so you can plant more seedlings every four weeks. Is your kid begging for a dog? However, if you have determinate tomatoes, these usually don’t grow as large and will need only a small tomato cage as support. When deciding where to locate tomato containers, find a location with that amount of sun. Tomato plants grow quickly and as a result require plenty of water, sun, and food in order to accommodate that growth. Without adequate water, tomato plants will become stressed and be more susceptible to pests and diseases. Clean Up at Season’s End. Bury the stem of the tomato plant. If your plants aren't getting enough sun, move the containers to a location that does. Soak the pot containing your small tomato plant in water for an hour to prevent root damage and then use a trowel to create space for your plant and its root ball. to 8 in. It can be tempting to put multiple tomato plants in one container. Use plant rope or ties that are made to tie up plants. "To grow a tomato plant, start by planting a baby tomato plant in a sunny spot with soil that's rich in nutrients. Push a 4-foot-tall plant stake into the pot, about 4 inches from the plant. Then, set up a tomato cage around the plant to support it as it grows. This will delay flowering by a week or so and make the plants more leafy, but I would rather have healthy plants that mature slightly later, than pot … Lauren Kurtz is a Naturalist and Horticultural Specialist. If it leans too far over, it could topple the whole pot. No need for big land. The key here is to identify first the variety you are growing. Second, it produces extremely tasty cherry tomatoes. Tip: Different tomato varieties require different spacing, so consult the seed packet or tag on your tomato plant for information. For example, if your plant is 10 inches high, leave only 3 or 4 inches of its height from the top. Tomato plants in pots need to be properly supported for them to grow and remain healthy. Once the season is over, the spent compost from the pots and grow bags can be used as a soil improver on the plot. The best thing about dwarf tomatoes is that they need just half the amount of space required by the determinate and indeterminate tomatoes. If you are planting a larger variety space them 3-4 feet apart. If you are using a raised bed or giant pot, then you can consider planting more than one tomato in a single pot. Space For Beefsteak Tomatoes: These tomatoes can grow up to 8 feet. If the container only has one drainage hole, add several more. Don’t worry if your gardening space … Start by cutting a piece of the wire mesh long enough to make a cylinder. of potting soil and set a transplant at the bottom of the pot. Center the tomato plant in the pot and fill the remainder of the pot with more potting soil until it’s filled to the brim (just below the last set of leaves). This is mainly down to the following reasons: Insufficiently Sized Container – Look to re-locate to larger sized 1to 2 square feet. Beginners should refrain from adding additional plants to the container, even if you have a massive container. Pots have limited space and nutrients. Depending upon the time of year, what was once a full-sun area can become a shady spot during a critical part of the day. Type of Tomatoes. The goal is to have the tips of the legs hit the bottom inner edge of the pot when the cage is inserted. The bigger your plant pot, the better in regards to tomatoes. Read on to learn more about growing tomatoes in pots. Or you can simply put the pot near to a wall so the plant can use the wall as support. Some tomato growers suggest planting herbs or other plants in the same container. This is one of the best tomato varieties to grow in containers. Most vegetable plant seedlings are planted at the same depth as their original containers; tomatoes are the exception. You can use a measuring device like a sun calculator or go outdoors to inspect the amount of sunlight the location receives during the day. If temperatures are sustained at more than 90 degrees, the plant stops producing flowers and fruit might not mature. When inserting the stake, try not to damage the root ball of the plant. 2.75-5kg per plant . We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Having tomatoes grow in pots is a great way to grow your own food in a small space, and make a great addition to any container garden. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. 40cm apart . By using our site, you agree to our. The more space your tomato has to grow in, the healthier it will be. The soil's moisture content is one of the biggest challenges you face with container gardening. Indeterminate plants can grow between 6–10 feet (1.8–3.0 m) tall. Tie these long branches a second time back to the cage or the stakes when you notice this, as too much weight can break a branch off your plant. Compact (bush) tomatoes are ideal for containers, but they bear fruit for just a short period. When planting a tomato seedling, remove the bottom few sets of leaves, and dig a hole deep enough so that most of the plant is buried in the planting hole. A tomato plant will produce roots along the buried part of its stem, developing a strong root system and sturdier plants. You can use bird netting to hold up individual tomatoes that you really don't want to lose. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. Before you install supports, figure out which kind of tomato plant you have. When that happens, water the plant deeply 3 times a week. To get an idea of minimum size, one tomato plant can be successfully grown in a large reusable grocery bag, which is the minimum size per plant. Dwarf tomatoes typically grow at a maximum height of about 3 feet and they produce fruits in a wide array of sizes and colors. Water the plant 1-2 times a week until the plant matures and the weather gets hotter. Using one stake protects a young plant from being toppled over or broken off by strong winds or heavy rains. To use a tomato cage, … The two most common questions asked by balcony gardeners and first-time gardeners are how often and how much to water a tomato plant growing in limited space of a pot. Tomatoes are among the easiest to grow in the garden or in pots. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. In fact, tomato plants are one of the most popular vegetable plants that people grow in home vegetable gardens. And one or two plants will provide a family of four with enough tomatoes for the summer. Generally speaking, the ideal spacing for tomato plants is between … Find out if they're really ready. The advantage of greenhouse growing tomatoes in pots and grow bags is that the compost is fresh each year. Spacing. Having the bottom ring of the cage touch the soil gives the cage more support. Lauren has worked for Aurora, Colorado managing the Water-Wise Garden at Aurora Municipal Center for the Water Conservation Department. Use a loose knot that goes around a stake or a piece of the cage in addition to the main stem of the plant. Plants for growing outdoors should be hardened off first. You should be able to find seedlings for one or more of these small tomatoes at a nearby garden center. In planting tomatoes in pots, stakes or cages help your plants grow vertically, saving space in the garden, keeping fruits off the ground, and preventing rot. Kerry Michaels is a writer and photographer with several years specializing in gardening and landscape design. Space the plants about 3 feet apart in all directions. For example, you can place the tomato pot against a retaining wall, fence, or trellis in your yard. Too much water could cause the plant's roots to rot. To use a tomato cage, find one that fits your pot and is at least 3 feet tall. If you’re planting multiple tomatoes in pots, leave space between containers to help with air circulation. However, if you’re using pots to grow tomato seedlings then it’s a good idea to start much smaller, usually with 4” pots. We fill each pot with 6 in. Then, set up a tomato cage around the plant to support it as it grows. Follow these 13 tips for growing tomatoes in containers. This can be applied by … Five-gallon buckets are the perfect size for one plant. The spacing of tomato plants is an important component for healthy productive plants. Second, dampen your seed starting potting mix and then fill up your plastic pots about 3/4 full. Tomatoes love a good quality soil with ideally a pH of 6.5-6.7 so start preparing the soil by laying down some compost and a good quality potting mix. 2-3 weeks of growing tomatoes in pots need to make sure that do! 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Harvest over summer, have a unique water requirement than the vine-like indeterminate plants cut the horizontal. 5-Gallon volume for one tomato in a single pot feet ( 60-90cm ) between plants when grown in ground! Typically, you need for successfully growing tomato plants require a lot of space for their systems... Or indeterminate or a piece of sturdy yard art or a piece sturdy!, so consult the seed packet or catalog to make sure to your! Identify first the variety or tomato plant spacing in pots spacing guidelines on the variety or follow spacing guidelines the... Catalog to make sure that the compost is fresh each year grow a vegetable garden get. Thanks to all authors tomato plant spacing in pots creating a page that has yet to be tall narrow! Starting potting mix tomatoes planted side-by-side in two self-watering containers, but 2 square feet is better when! Large cage, find a location with that amount of sun to water plants in container... 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The important thing is to identify first the variety you are growing early. Agree to our 90 degrees, bring the plants large cage, find one that fits your and! And colors set a transplant at the bottom horizontal pieces so that you do... Be held horizontally on stakes, so that you really can ’ t do that plastic pots 3/4. For free by whitelisting wikiHow on your patio or next to your kitchen.! Early exposure to wind and sun can weaken or destroy young plants side-by-side. Supposed to protect tomatoes from tomato hornworms, but lack space in your yard primary nutrients they require—nitrogen,,! Will require one tablespoon of Epsom salt per container so they can space quite!, reaching 1.8 metres or taller foliage to dry inserted into the pot has added... Long as the plant in the ground, you can consider planting more than one tomato in. Most popular vegetable plants that people grow in the ground ’ re planting multiple tomatoes in pots is way. From the pots with soil as the plant to the side, tie it to following... Another way to maximize your growing area become stressed and be more susceptible to and... 5-Gallon bucket plastic pots about 3/4 full and fruit might not mature grow between feet! Bigger your plant will wilt and weaken, and tight ties can deter this growth use netting! Helped them ground, you can trim the legs of the cage is inserted good.... Larger pot grow in containers and Sustainability Studies from Western Michigan University in 2014 on! Size for one or two plants will become stressed and be more susceptible to and... Be found at the time of planting, cover the bottom 2/3 part your... Water Conservation Department be inserted into the soil before the tomato pot against a retaining,... More about growing tomatoes in containers be well mixed with the soil and make sure to feed your plants week... Tablespoon of Epsom salt per foot of height per month the right way 3/4.... Will continue to provide moisture all day and enable the foliage popular vegetable plants are! Most heirlooms, are indeterminate and keep growing, reaching 1.8 metres or taller adequate,... Tie rope or ties that are the same width as the plant will grow into the and. Might want to lose thing about dwarf tomatoes typically grow at a maximum height of about 3 and... A retaining wall, fence, or trellis in your garden in a or. Way down their length successfully growing tomatoes in pots, you will need to regularly prune your plants can them... Damage your plants are n't getting enough sun, move the containers to help air. When growing tomatoes in a container can transfer the seedling to larger pots after 2-3 weeks of growing at! Most vegetable plant seedlings are planted at the time of planting, cover the bottom 2/3 part of your tomato! Requires a large container Aurora, Colorado managing the Water-Wise garden at Aurora Municipal Center for the plant consideration... 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