What tomatoes need to grow well?
One of the most important aspects of tomato growing is selecting a location for your plants that will allow them to flourish. It’s really all about what tomatoes need to grow well!
Tomatoes need plenty of sunshine and a good rule of thumb for ensuring they get enough, is to find a spot in your garden that sees a minimum of 6 hours of sunshine a day. Some will argue that tomatoes need as much as 10 hours of sunshine a day and if you have a spot that can deliver that amount of sunshine then it certainly wouldn’t do any harm; assuming of course you don’t allow the plants to dry out.
The reason for this level of sunshine is of course the ripening process, without the required amount of sunshine it will prove quite difficult to get your tomato fruit to a fully ripened condition.
Other considerations to take into account when selecting a location include the need for watering, somewhere that is relatively sheltered and ultimately the type of tomatoes you want to grow given the space you have available.
So watering first, this is a practical consideration of how often and how much you need to water the plants. It is just common sense to have your tomatoes near a source of water, whether that is a garden tap or a kitchen sink. You will find that life is much easier for you if you can locate the plants closer to your water source and you will also be more likely to provide an adequate amount of water the easier it is. This is no reflection on the individual, many people have a busy lifestyle and find it difficult to assign enough time to tomato care. But watering is another essential aspect of tomato growing and the plants in full sunshine will need plenty of water to ensure they do not dry out.
You can of course opt for Micro Water Irrigation System to help manage your watering program if you simply do not have the time to do it manually or have to spend some days away from your garden.
Shelter is another aspect worth thinking about, tomato plants are not known for their robustness and the vine varieties need to be tied to stakes with a soft garden string to avoid bruising of the plants. Even this will not help however if the plants are being buffeted by wind or are exposed too much to the changing elements of extremes of weather. Placing your plants close to a wall, fence or garden hedge will help provide some shelter. If the need exists you may want to consider growing tomatoes in a greenhouse. Certainly in places that have a UK type climate, this could actually prove to be essential.
The final aspect of selecting a suitable location is with regard to available space. So actually it is the other way around, it is not so much choosing the right location as selecting the right kind of tomato variety to suit the space you have available. If you are limited to a patio or a very small garden you may be better placed selecting one of the many dwarf varieties. They still produce lots of lovely tomato fruit but can flourish in small spaces. Or if you fancy going a little more radical you could adopt the topsy turvy tomato planting method; this is where you hang a plant upside down from a stand or rafter. Vine tomatoes are more suited to this approach as they hang down vertically and with a little bit of clever tomato pruning can be constrained into very small spaces.
At the end of the day whatever tomato variety you choose to grow and whatever method you select, to be successful you will need to ensure sufficient sunshine and water. It is worth considering exactly where the best place in your garden is for tomatoes, because the rewards really are worth the effort of getting it right.