A delicious fruit, tomatoes are famously good for growing yourself due to their ease of growth and the (relatively) small size of their plants. But being relatively easy to grow doesn't mean that you can just plunk a few seeds into some soil, pour some water on it, and automatically reap red, juicy tomatoes right off the bat – as with many hobbies, things that seem simple are rarely as easy as they may appear. So if you're looking to grow your own tomatoes but have never done it before, then here are a few tips and tricks to get you garden-fresh fruits in no time.
Let There Be Light
Tomatoes want full sun, all the time (or, rather, for around two-thirds of the day), so putting them in your kitchen window probably isn't the best move. While the ideal place for tomatoes is outside, as that way they'll catch the sun's rays no matter where it is in the sky, if you don't have the room for a backyard garden, you'll want to invest in a plant light. These portable little lamps simulate the sun's rays and should be placed no more than a few inches from your little seedlings (so that your tomato stalks grow stocky, not spindly). You'll want to adjust the light as your seedlings grow to keep it a few inches from the plant at all times, but the result will be strong, hearty tomato plants that can fully support the growing fruit.
Water Like You Mean It
As much as tomatoes like sun and heat, they like water even better – so water your plants regularly. Missing a day or a week and then overwatering will lead to cracked fruit (and possibly even fruit with blossom rot on their ends) with little flavor. When you're watering, ensure that you water deep – tomato plants have deep roots – and avoid getting the water on the leaves. Though you may think that watering the leaves is a good way to keep them hydrated, it will actually just waterlog them, leading to fewer tomatoes and an overall unhealthy plant.
Trim the Small Leaves
Those small leaves that grow in the juncture between the stalk and an off-shooting branch won't grow you any fruit, but they do take up essential nutrients that your tomatoes need to both survive and thrive. Taking a few seconds to prune off those tiny leaves will not only make your plant look better, but also help to conserve nutrients so that your tomatoes get everything that they need.
For more information, contact local professionals like Wild Geese Gardens.