by David Harber
Grow Backyard Garden Tomato Tips
Hopefully if you are reading this you read my last article. I am going to continue where my article Grow Backyard Garden Tomato left off. We are going to go over growing, care, harvesting and some tips for storing. If you want to grow a successful tomato garden you may want to go check that out first so that you too can enjoy a big juicy tomato from your backyard garden. So let’s get started.
Fertilizing will require you to water your tomato garden with a diluted fish emulsion, compost tea or a good liquid organic fertilizer. Tomatoes grow rather large so they need lots of nutrients so plan on every two or three weeks water your tomato garden with fish emulsion or another natural liquid fertilizer.
Watering your thirsty tomatoes requires 3 to 5 gallons a week check soil of your backyard garden for moisture considering your climate and early in the season water with heated water to warm the soil after the soil is warm apply a mix of mulch straw, plastic or paper to conserve moisture and helps keep disease spores from jumping onto the plants from the soil.
Red mulch helps your tomato garden to produce sooner and set more fruit through warming the soil.
Don’t do any pruning until the plants have grown for a week or two. Pruning is optional for the determinate tomatoes but definitely recommended for the indeterminate variety especially if you grow them on a trellis or stake. Remove all suckers the stems that grow beneath the main stem and leaf crotches. This directs the growth to a single main stem repeat once a week.
Harvesting. In the south where you can grow backyard garden tomatoes early start harvesting the ripe fruit from your tomato garden in May.
Tomatoes ripen from the inside out. When color changes from green to red the fruit is ripe. Heirlooms are prone cracking so harvest two days early and finish ripening indoors.
As fall frost approaches remove the bottom leaves flowers and any fruit that will not ripen before the season ends this helps ripening the rest of the fruit. At the of the first frost root prune the plants by using s spade to slice down into the soil in a circle one foot around your tomato plants this triggers the plant to ripen more quickly.
Ripe tomatoes don’t last long and refrigeration will ruin their flavor. You need to use them quickly or store them by canning share some with friend if you have a large amount unripe tomatoes spread out on a shelf in a cool pantry garage or basement cover with paper check regularly remove ripe fruit and dispose of any that are beginning to rot.
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