How to Grow Tomatoes
Grow tomatoes indoors produces beautiful fruit without most of the hassle of outdoor gardening. With today’s technology and limited outdoor space, growing tomatoes indoors is a fun, exciting, and delicious hobby. In the following passages we will show you how to grow tomatoes on your own.
To get you started growing tomatoes we’ve put together 10 simple steps for you to follow.
1. Decide where you will grow your tomatoes. A table for growing makes your job easier, but this is not a requirement. Look for a waist high surface that allows you easy access to your plants. Make sure, if you put your plants on the floor, that the floor isn’t too cold.
2. All tomatoes have two important requirements: light and proper temperature. You will need a system of grow-lights to do this properly. Don’t think you’re dropping a small fortune on these lights — cheap “shop lights” will work if fitted with PVC tubes to focus the lights.
3. You must also worry about the temperature where your plants will grow. A heated area works best, like a warm basement or summertime garage. Tomatoes need temperatures between 70 and 80 during the day and in the upper 60s at night. Anything cooler will cause the tomatoes to grow poorly and not taste very good.
4. Germinate your tomato seeds in a small pot with any good seed starter mix. Buying peat pots is the best choice, because they can be transplanted without disturbing the roots or digging out the plant. Keep your soil mix lightly moist, but never soggy. Place three tomato seeds maximum per each pot and wait about a week for germination.
5. It is time to turn your grow lights on for about 12 hours a day. An inexpensive light timer can make this job foolproof. Your grow lights should be an inch from the top of the plant, and raised as the plant grows taller, so hang these lights on a chain for ease of movement.
6. Once your seedlings are three inches tall, they need to be transplanted into larger containers. The minimum container size should be a five gallon pot, but bigger is always better at this stage, so you should leave more room for your plant’s roots to grow. Fill the pot with new potting soil and transplant the seedlings into your larger pot.
7. Sometimes more than one seedling will sprout in each pot, so you have to play God and thin them out. Remember to leave one seedling for each pot. Be careful when removing — roots are still quite delicate.
8. You should start fertilizing your plants as soon as they are moved into their new larger pot homes. Liquid seaweed is a great fertilizer, and an organic one, especially when you have recently transplanted your plants. Liquid seaweed adds tons of nutrients and is inexpensive.
9. Water your tomato plants thoroughly, but never too often. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT over water – too much water is as bad as too little. Allow your soil to dry out between each watering.
10. Now all you have to do is wait for the tomatoes to ripen! Eat and enjoy. I like mine with a little salt and a cold beer.