How to plant and grow: Tomatoes

Plump, juicy tomatoes can add colour and flavour to any dish, so if you’ve yet to try
to grow your own, here’s out simple guide to growing tomatoes.

Tomato plants can be grown in pots, grow bags or directly in the ground depending
on what space or type of garden you have. But ultimately they can all be grown in a
similar way.

1. Young tomato plants bought from a garden centre can be grown in individual pots,
two to a large grow bag or spaced out about 50cm apart if planted in the ground.
Ideally, all tomatoes should grow inside a greenhouse but they can be moved
outside when the weather is warm and the last frosts have been.

2. Ideally they should be about 15-20cm tall before you plant them and the soil
should be mixed with compost so they have a rich soil to grow from. Ideally, mix in
fertilizer with multi-purpose compost to get the best results.

3. Indeterminate and semi-determinate varieties will grow up and tall and so will
need to be tied to a support post. To encourage the plant to produce fruits, you need
to pinch out the tomato side shoots.

4. Bush and determinate varieties will not need any training or pruning.

5. Tomato plants need a lot of watering and it is best to water them little and often.
Tomatoes planted in the ground or in larger grow bags will need more attention to
ensure that the soil doesn’t dry out. Try to water as regularly as possible to prevent
the encouragement of nutritional imbalance.

6. Tomato plants attract pests so ensure that greenhouses are kept well ventilated
and you can use an organic pest control solution if and when you see an attack.

7. Tomatoes are ready to be harvested when they are red and ripe to eat.
Remember to wash them thoroughly if you have used any form of pest control on
them.