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Tomato Growing Thread 2021

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by JWK, Jan 4, 2021.

  1. JWK

    JWK Gardener Staff Member

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    Going by your photo @mazambo it looks like you have already pricked out into individual pots?

    Tomatoes need space, they don't like being crammed together with leaves touching so that's the main reason for pricking out, same for all plants really.

    I have to admit I gave my tomato seedlings a feed against my own advice this year as they looked yellow and were hardly growing, I think I had a bad batch of compost. After a very diluted feed they soon perked up.
     
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    • mazambo

      mazambo Forever Learning

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      Yes pricked them out a few weeks ago.
       
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      • pete

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

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        I'm giving some feed, because I'm keeping plants that need to go out and be hardening off, in smaller pots than I would like.
        I cant see a problem with feeding if the plants look like they are struggling, just another one of those myths that was said by someone many years ago and has been repeated until it becomes law.;)
         
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        • Aidan mc

          Aidan mc Apprentice Gardener

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          I have 2 sets of tomato plants (sungold, Gardeners delight, shirley) in the house ready to plant out in polytunnel. Weather has been awful cold here with frosts recently.
          One set of plants are already about 500mm tall and have flower buds forming, but the top growth leaves are curled and a little crispy in appearance.
          Whereas the second set are smaller about 350mm but more healthier looking!
          The first set were potted up about 2 weeks ago, the second set weren't. I used compost that came from household waste, the compost the local council give out, although it maybe 2 years old as none was given last year cause of covid.
          I'm thinking better to plant the smaller ones out in the tunnel?
          Top photo is the smaller healthier looking plants, bottom one is larger plants with the curled/withered looking leaves.
           

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          • JWK

            JWK Gardener Staff Member

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            @Aidan mc your withered set look to be affected by weedkiller residues, probably from the council compost. I had the same issue years ago when this weedkiller first appeared, it only takes a minute amount and the active ingredient does not break down easily, it can remain in compost for years.

            Google aminopyralid to compare your plants.
             
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            • JWK

              JWK Gardener Staff Member

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              • Aidan mc

                Aidan mc Apprentice Gardener

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                Hi John,
                That could be it! Its only on the ones i potted up using the council compost.
                The healthy ones were in john innes seed compost.
                So much for free council compost!
                 
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                • JWK

                  JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                  What a shame, I found my affected plants were a complete write off. At least you have some healthy ones.
                   
                • Purple Streaks

                  Purple Streaks Gardener

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                  Welsh agri sorry don't know how I did it but my reply came out as a pm!!!


                  Anyhow....... Yes I grow these I find them tasty quite different ,
                  unlike the red tomatos. Not a heavy yielded I got 20 odd from a plant.but the taste made up for it
                   
                • pete

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

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                  Weedkiller affected tomatoes are usually misshapen and have a strange taste.
                  I remember a neighbour having this problem years ago, and the only thing we could work out was he had a box of weedkiller on the shelf in the greenhouse.
                   
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                  • Aidan mc

                    Aidan mc Apprentice Gardener

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                    • pete

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

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                      Personally, I think they grow pretty well in any compost, obviously one not contaminated with weedkiller, but as the main part of the plants life, when grown in pots, is all about feeding you cant really go wrong.
                       
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                      • Cynthia Chloris

                        Cynthia Chloris Gardener

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                        Have any of the growers on this thread ever suffered from planting tomatoes in the same bed year after year? I have done just this for about 5 years, adding plenty of new compost and manure each year but I live in fear that one year I will pay a price. If you experienced this, what happened? What did it look like?
                         
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                        • Cynthia Chloris

                          Cynthia Chloris Gardener

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                          I planted almost all of mine out yesterday now the nights look warmer. Most were fine but some of the younger plants provided a feast for slugs. I'm mightily huffed. Lucky I have some spares. Tomatoes dont suffer too much from slugs and snails unless they are young. What tips do people have for keeping the molluscs off?
                           
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                          • JWK

                            JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                            Hi @Cynthia Chloris what happens is bugs and fungi build up and each year tomato plants become less healthy, yellowing and weaker with thinner stems and less fruit. Because it's gradual you kind of get used to the look of them, it's only if you see someone else's healthy plants, if you understand what I mean.

                            I used to change my soil in the greenhouse, swapping with beds that hadn't grown tomatoes or potatoes (same family same problem). That was hard work.

                            A few years ago I started using grafted plants, selecting a rootstock that was resistant to the common soil borne pests, this gave me results as good as if I had swapped the soil.

                            Then some growers on here found that simply using mycorrhizal fungi was just as good, so no need for grafting or swapping soil.

                            I trialled this and got great results, so now I keep the same soil and when planting tomatoes just sprinkle the product at the bottom of the planting hole so it is in contact with the roots. It gives the plants extra vigour and enormous root systems.

                            I use Empathy RootGrow.
                             
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