TOMATO GROWING THREAD 2020

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by ARMANDII, Jan 18, 2020.

  1. Laxeiro

    Laxeiro Apprentice Gardener

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    I have a row of tomato plants in pots against a wall. Last week in London was quite wet so I didn’t really water them much, only one day. I have been only watering if I feel the soil dry by putting a finger in. All the other have had the same treatment and are fine.
     
  2. Aldo

    Aldo Super Gardener

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    Probably I should not attribute human traits to my plants, but.. One thing I like about tomatoes is that they never seem to give up :D

    This was snapped in two by the wind several weeks ago

    [​IMG]

    So I replaced it, stuck the two sections in a small pot and abandoned it in a shady corner..

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    It didn't even loose the tomatoes on the top section, it just made roots and kept growing :D
     
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    • Aldo

      Aldo Super Gardener

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      It does look a bit weird, however I did notice some variability, at times considerable, between identical plants growing in seemingly identical conditions.
      For instance, some of my potted plants seem to drink water much faster, and wilt faster. Or the soil does not soak up properly, with most of the water running down (this happens when the soil got very dry, it looses the ability to retain humidity, the fix is to water it lightly and frequently).
      Do all pots have drainage holes?
      Is the soil identical (from the same bag)?
      Do you notice any mold on the soil?
      Is the pot sitting in a section of the floor where water might pool when raining or watering?
      Any cat or other animal that might be peeing in your pots?

      I think it is quite unlikely if your soil is fresh from a bag, but I have seen something similar happening to strawberries. One day they were all happy and the next they were all wilty and sad. Watering, or not, made no difference, they died within days.
      I dug them out of the planter and checked the soil. Sure enough, there were maggots from a beetle, happily eating all the roots. I had to discard 140 litres of soil, and several young plants from runners, which suffered from the same problem in their little pots, and would have immediately passed to the planter if put there.

      I am not trying to discount foul play necessarily, but it is worth considering possible alternative reasons, there is quite a lot that can go wrong with gardening.
       
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      • Jasmine star

        Jasmine star Gardener

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        Hi, new to growing tomatoes so please bear with me. :rolleyespink: I have 3 Beef master F1 and 1 Gardeners delight. They are currently in a unheated greenhouse and are growing at speed. As you can see from the pics the 3 Beef masters are taller. So what's next. From what I have read they need to go into bigger pots and staked but how big. Also what compost. General or I'm sure I've read ericaceous somewhere. Would I need to protect from slugs and others that are waiting in the background to munch on my plants :th scifD36: I've also read to snip off the branches coming from the main stem ? So many questions and I apologise if these have been asked before :love30: I'm so much better with flowery plants. Thanks in advance.20200623_191216.jpg20200623_191211.jpg
         
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        • JWK

          JWK Gardener

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          Definitely get them into bigger pots straight away. Use a cane for support or I use string dangled from the greenhouse support and wind the plant round as it grows. You just need ordinary Multipurpose Compost (MPC) not ericaceous. They would be better in soil if you have space?

          Slugs shouldn't be a problem on tomatoes especially in a greenhouse, provided you keep it tidy and don't leave empty pots and stuff lying around for them to hide in.

          You nip out the side shoots when they appear and are about an inch long. Ask away when the appear if you need help.
           
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          • Jasmine star

            Jasmine star Gardener

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            Thank you @JWK that's a big help. :love30: I have 3 choices.
            I have a border with space I can put them in. (Theres other normal garden plants in there) It's against a wall. it gets sun for 4-6 hours a day. Theres lots of slugs snails and other critters that like to munch everything.
            I can keep them in the greenhouse (unheated) it gets sun in the morning for a couple of hours then again for a few hours in the afternoon. I can fit them in big pots easily in there.
            Or I have a paved patio area (walled) that's in full sun most of the day. It gets pretty hot there. They could go in big pots there. I could try one in each position? I'm getting carried away with myself now ha :psnp: happy to go with what you think. :dbgrtmb:
             
          • Aldo

            Aldo Super Gardener

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            @Jasmine star In my experience tomatoes are not likely to get hurt seriously by slugs.
            I have very determined and voracious slugs and snails in my garden, they will destroy courgettes and similar if left unchecked, but they have never been a problem for tomatoes.
            Very occasionally they might give a bite to the lower leafs, but they do not seem to like them much..

            Planting in soil will make your tomatoes less likely to suffer from lack of water, while potted tomatoes will require you to be more attentive with watering.
            You could plant them in soil, but in bottomless pots or pots with lots of holes in the bottom, so that the roots are free to dig into the soil. That will keep them elevated, so more protected from pest, if that is a worry.
            Weather seem to be quite good now, so if it was me I would go for the sunniest place, even if it is not the greenhouse.

            Both beef master and gardener's delight are indeterminate tomatoes, so they do benefit from removing the side shoots, to keep them growing as cordons.
            My bamboo canes are over 7 feet tall and by the end of the season cordon tomatoes will be taller than that, but they are in soil and planted out early.
            As for pots size, it depends a bit on the variety I think.
            However, I noticed that, when given a very large pot, even if shared with another plant, tomatoes will grow noticeably larger.
            This said, I think 35-40cm pots are a safe bet for most tomatoes, you could perhaps do with something slightly smaller, but it will not retain moisture as long as a larger one.

            There is some evidence that spraying tomatoes (and other plants too) with water mixed to aspirin (one 75mg uncoated pill disolved in 1 litre of water) helps protecting them from infections and improves quality. Quite inexpensive to try.
             
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            • Scrungee

              Scrungee Well known for it

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              But if just one gets in, it can cause loads of damage to small tomato seedlings by chewing through thin stems overnight, devastating if you've only got 4 or 5 germinated out of a £5 packet from T&M.

              The most dangerous time is earlier in the season when some stuff is going outside to harden off and is brought back inside on cold nights with slugs hiding under cell trays. Re-used rigid cell packs from garden centre plants and pots in pot trays are the worst.
               
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                Last edited: Jun 24, 2020
              • Aldo

                Aldo Super Gardener

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                That's a very good point actually.. My suggestion that tomatoes do not fear slugs was probably a bit misleading, because seedlings are not necessarily safe.
                However, I have planted 15cm tomatoes along with large courgettes and pumpkins, and they were not damaged, while the other plants' leaves and stems ended up full of holes.

                Very true about slugs hiding under pots and cell trays. Small snails are in a sense even worst because they tend hitching rides while hiding in tiny crevices or under the rim of pots, and can do that in full daylight, very easy to miss if you are sheltering the plants in a hurry at the evening.
                 
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                • RosyCat

                  RosyCat Apprentice Gardener

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                  Hi guys.. I’m new to this forum and to growing tomatoes.

                  I’ve got a question regarding growing tomatoes indoors, ie; on a windowsill.

                  I currently have two young tumbling bella seedlings that I plan on growing them in a pot on a sunny windowsill - it gets about six hours of morning sun each day in summer. Is that feasible? That is, to grow a bush variety completely indoors? Would they do poorly?

                  Also, has anyone had experience growing tumbling bella before? Most people seem to grow tumbling tom but when I was looking for seeds tumbling bella was all the website had, and it’s said to be an ‘improved’ version of tumbling tom, whatever that means. What do the tomatoes taste like.. any good? Compared to say, gardeners delight?
                   
                • JWK

                  JWK Gardener

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                  Sorry never replied. I would hedge your bets and try one in each position. I have a couple in pots on my very sunny patio which are doing well this year. They need lots more watering than the plants I have in the greenhouse. I intend to plant mine before going away on holiday as they need watering twice a day so would not survive. Also outside they can get blown about a bit or battered by heavy rain or hail never mind your slugs.
                  You won't know till you try. They can grow with shade as well as full sun. Then next year you will know better. I still keep experimenting with different places in my garden, they can look quite decorative in a border once laden with ripening fruit.
                   
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                  • Paisley and Rich

                    Paisley and Rich Apprentice Gardener

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                    Hi all,

                    Hoping for some help....

                    We have been growing tomato plants for 2 months, We started growing them indoors then popped them out in the garden in a greenhouse, they have been doing so well.

                    We built them a new green house a few days ago, came down the other morning to these pictures....

                    I have searched the internet and there are so many conflicting messages, is anyone able to help identify the problem? :/

                    The leaves were crunchy and flaking off, so we watered them and fed them tomato feed - they are now no longer crunchy, however, still discoloured and limp.

                    Any help is appreciated, we love them so much, they have kept us sane in lockdown!
                     

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                  • JWK

                    JWK Gardener

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                    It looks like sun scorch, have you got a max min thermometer to check temps. If your new greenhouse is in direct sun and no ventilation it will be too hot for them. It looks to be the lower leaves so they will soon recover, well the damaged leaves won't but tomatoes are resilient and grow new ones very fast this time of year.
                     
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                    • pete

                      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                      Possibly wet leaves in full sun.
                       
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                      • Vince

                        Vince Not so well known for it.

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                        My late started, sown in a cold greenhouse and raised in a cold greenhouse tomatoes are playing catch up at a tremendous rate, what's more I have stronger plants this year. Perhaps the neglect at the start has made them "toughen up" but I would still advise against doing what I did!
                         
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