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Grow Your Own Tomatoes in Your Backyard With These Hacks

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Grow Your Own Tomatoes in Your Backyard With These Hacks
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Grow Your Own Tomatoes in Your Backyard With These Hacks

Source: Quora

There are always red and juicy tomatoes waiting for you at the farmer’s market or the neighborhood grocery store. But none of them can be as satisfying and fulfilling as the one you grow yourself. You don’t have to go far to become a proud tomato farmer. Just a little space in your yard is enough. Add that to these hacks we are about to share, and you are good to go.
You don’t have to go far to become a proud tomato farmer. Just a little space in your yard is enough. Add that to these hacks we are about to share, and you are good to go.

Choose What Tomatoes to Plant

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Tomatoes are not lacking in variety. From small cherry tomatoes to large beefsteak tomatoes, there are hundreds of tomato types to grow. They also come in various shapes and colors, including red, yellow, purple, and orange.
Some tomatoes are dense and pulpy, while others are juicy. You are basically spoiled for choice. But generally, the Beefsteak, Betterboy, and German Johnson are great for salads, sandwiches, and burgers. For flesh, go for Super Roma and Plum Regal.

Choosing the Best Site for Your Tomato Garden

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Your tomatoes will fare better if you are more intentional about choosing their planting area. Whether your tomato will grow in a garden bed or container, ensure that it’s in a location with 6 to 8 hours of daily direct sunlight.
The location should have a soil that is fertile, well-drained, and sufficiently alkaline. Its pH should be between 5.8 to 7 for the best results.

You Can Start Indoors

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Your tomato plant is resilient enough to start life outdoors. But buying transplants or starting your seeds indoors about six weeks before your area’s average last frost date is an awesome idea.
This will help your tomato produce much earlier than usual. You can transplant your seedlings more than once to help them grow bigger roots and become more healthy.

Preparing the Soil

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Although the tomato plant isn’t very choosy, it performs better in the right environment. This includes a well-prepared soil. Their soil should be rich and easy to penetrate.
In the fall, garnish the first few inches of the soil with organic manure such as banana peels, eggshells, and so on. Make sure the soil is warm enough before relocating your plants outdoors. To achieve this, cover them with black plastic during the winter season.

How to Plant Tomatoes

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Remember to remove the plant’s lowest leaves when planting. Prepare 12-inch deep holes to cover the plant up to its leaves. This way, you are anchoring your plant more firmly into the ground and creating conditions for more roots to form.
More roots are great news for your plant. Deeper and more robust roots help the tomato plant gain higher resistance against wind, diseases, drought, and pests.

Get Your Spacing Right

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When planting tomatoes, more space between plants means better air circulation and healthier plants. So, getting the right spacing is crucial to the well-being of the plant.
At the least, your plants should be 18-24 inches apart, especially for bush tomatoes. Space them 36 to 48 inches apart if you are planting larger varieties. The indeterminate variety, which keeps growing until there is a frost, will require up to 48 inches.

Tomato Needs Support

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Just as babies need a helping hand at that stage of their lives, so does the young tomato plant. Tomatoes start out well, growing vertically. But when there is no support, they begin to bend over and grow horizontally.
Horizontal growth means more leaves and less fruit. To prevent this, support the plant with wireframes and tomato cages.

Ensure Access to Sufficient Water

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As strong and resilient as the tomato plant is, it needs a regular supply of water to thrive. Plus, there is a way to water tomatoes: water them deeply and at long intervals.
This way, their nutrients, which are deep in the soil, will not be affected if the surface soil dries up. Water them slowly and consistently. Water them in the morning to prepare them for the day’s heat.

Fertilizers are Important

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Fertilizers are needed for that extra boost, but knowing when to apply them is also important. Tomatoes appreciate fertilizers at two crucial stages of cultivation.
The first is immediately after you’ve planted them and the second is right before the fruits begin to form. Try out different fertilizers such as Nitrogen, Potassium, and phosphorus to know which one is the best fit.

Pruning Too

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Pruning is one of the most important but widely ignored practices in growing tomatoes. Once the first tomatoes begin to emerge, remove all the leaves below it. Then, tie the plant to a support for a brief period.
This practice helps the plant to focus its development on producing fruits rather than on unproductive branches. Pruning is usually required periodically so watch out for when another need arises.

Harvest at the Right Time

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Observe your tomato fruits to know when their full colors have emerged and when they’ve become firm. That’s the right time to pluck them. But if you harvest green but mature tomatoes, they can ripen indoors.
Just ensure that you pluck the greenest ones before a hard frost. Also, remove any rotten tomatoes from the plant so they don’t affect the healthy ones. They are all yours to enjoy.