Grow Tomatoes In Pot: Tomato is one of the most eaten fruit in the world. It is normally red in color and is used frequently in a wide range of recipes. In fact, the tomato is one of the essential parts of the dining table, whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner. In addition to its delicious taste, it is also very nutritious.
It contains Carbohydrates, fats, protein, and various vitamins. It is also a rich source of minerals such as Magnesium, Manganese, Phosphorous, and Potassium. However, it is 95% water. 100 grams of raw tomato provides 18 calories.
Tomato can be consumed in different ways, such as raw, fried or cooked. It is an important ingredient in various dishes, salads, sauces, and drinks. The utilization of tomato is unlimited.
Tomato belongs to the genus Solanum, under the family Solanaceae. Its scientific name is Solanum Lycopersicum. Often common man categorizes it under the vegetables but scientifically it is a fruit or berry. Tomato is native of Western South America.
The name tomato comes from the Aztec language word “tomatl” converted into the Spanish word “tomate” and finally into English word tomato. Initially cultivated in Mexico, from where Spanish people brought it to Europe during Spanish Colonization of South America. From Europe, it spread all over the world and today it is one of the most eaten fruit/berry in the world.
Different varieties of tomatoes are grown widely in different parts of the world, mostly in temperate regions. With the facility of greenhouses, it can be cultivated around the year. The tomato plant is normally 3-10 feet tall. Its stem is relatively weaker. Botanically it is not a vegetable; rather it is a berry type fruit.
Size of the fruit is between 0.5 to 4 inches, depending on the variety. It is a perennial plant. A tomato plant is a vine and needs support to rise up the ground. Indeterminate type of tomato is a tender perennial which dying annually, in the temperate climate, whereas the determinate type of tomato is an annual plant and can grow in all climates.
So, tomatoes are very much useful and beneficial in our daily life. That’s why people like to grow their own tomatoes in their home gardens. In this article, we will give you some useful tips on how to grow the tomato in a pot?
Types Of Tomato Plants
Tomatoes are mainly of two types, known as Determinate and Indeterminate.
Determinate – Determinate tomato has a compact bushy plant, which doesn’t need any pruning. Since its growth is relatively limited, it is the best option for growing in pots. Fruit of this type of tomato plant is smaller in size and also called as Cherry Tomato. It give fruit at once; hence you have to harvest entire fruit at the same time.
Indeterminate – Fruit of this type of tomato is relatively larger in size. Its growth is unlimited; hence require more space for proper growth and therefore not fit for growing in pots. It gives fruit throughout the entire season.
For home cultivation of tomatoes in pots, Determinate type of tomato is the best option, as it needs less space and less maintenance.
Selection Of Pot – The first thing which needs your attention while growing tomatoes at home, is the selection of the correct type of pot. The pot must be at least 30 cm wide and equally deep. However, its depth may also be increased up to 45 cm, depending on the space. Remember, a relatively bigger pot is always better.
But when it comes to the weight of the pot, always go for a lighter one, so that you can handle it easily. Tomatoes need well-drained soil, therefore it is recommended that the pot must have holes on the bottom, allowing water to drain out easily. Too much of water damages the tomato plant.
Selection Of Seeds – Always choose the best quality seeds for growing tomatoes at home. Seeds can be bought from your nearest garden shop. Or otherwise, you can also get seeds from the tomatoes you have in your kitchen. But be sure to get the seeds of the Determinate type of tomatoes, as you are going to grow them in pots.
For extracting seeds from the available tomatoes, select ripe tomatoes. Extract seeds from it and place them on a sieve. Pour water on the seeds and remove any leftover particles of fruit on the seeds. Once the seeds are clear from all leftover particles, spread them on the paper towel and let them dry out.
Planting The Seeds – Best time to plant the seeds of this type of tomatoes in pots in the spring season. Remember tomatoes cannot grow successfully if the temperature is low. Follow the process mentioned below, for planting the seeds.
- All seeds can be sown in one pot and then transplant each plant in one single pot.
- Use potting soil, which is available with your local garden shop.
- Fill the pot with that soil, leaving around 5 cm space on the top.
- Spread seeds on the soil in a way that there should be reasonable space in between them.
- Push the seed with hands so that they penetrate in the soil. Then add a thin layer of soil over them and press the soil for compaction.
- Now it’s time to give plenty of water to your pot. Make sure that the soil should remain moist all the times but avoid too much water to prevent waterlogging.
- Place the pot at a place where it can receive a good amount of sunshine.
Transplantation – Once the seed starts germinating, wait for the sprouts to attain a height of around 8 cm. This is the right time to transplant the tomato plants.
- Before picking up the sprouts for transplantation, it is better to give some water to your pot, so that the earth softens and makes it easy to uproot the bud.
- While uprooting the sprout, make sure not to break the roots.
- Each plant should be transplanted in a separate pot.
- While uprooting the sprout, try to retain some earth on the roots.
- Place the sprout in the new pot and fill it with garden soil, ensuring that entire roots and a part of the stem should be buried in the soil.
- Press the soil around the new plant and then give a good amount of water to it.
Important Point To Grow Tomatoes In Pot
- The tomato plant needs plenty of water, especially during the hot season.
- Tomato plant should be provided ample sunshine during the winter season.
- Protect the tomato plant from gusty winds.
- Keep watch on your pots and immediately take corrective measures on detection of the attack of any pest or diseases.
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