If you intend to start growing tomatoes from seed you will have so much more satisfaction than from starting from bought seedlings. But to be sure of your successes here are some tips that will give you the sweetest and earliest tomatoes on the block. Growing great tomatoes certainly needs a lot of hard work and starting early with your growing procedure will ensure that you bag in some of the best tomatoes of the year.
Here are some tips that will help you in growing tomato from seed:
Preheat soil: the soil in which you are about to plant your seeds should be heated first because tomato plants love heat. The best way to provide such a condition is to cover-up the planting area with black or red plastic sheet so that it can soak up the sun’s rays. This extra degree of heat will certainly give you all the tomatoes.
Do not crowd: if you are growing tomato from seed then it is must to ensure that you do not crowd up your seedlings. Every seedling should be given enough room to branch out. Crowding up can hamper the growth, making it difficult to transplant. Transplanting should be done as soon as you see the first leaves.
Eliminate bottom leaves: the bottom leaves, or the first leaves of the plant should be removed once the tomato plant is about 3 inches tall. These leaves are removed because they hardly have a chance to see the sun and are the first leaves to get affected with soil borne diseases.
Enough sunlight: tomato plants need a minimum of 6 to 7 hours of direct sunlight. If you cannot provide this then 18 hour duration under fluorescent lights will work fine. Remember to place your plant very close to these fluorescent lights.
Breeze:tomato plants need a lot of strong breeze to sway and make their stems grow stronger. If you cannot provide such climatic conditions for the plant, you can definitely turn the fan on them for 5 to 10 minutes in a day. This will give it the same affect.
Bury deeper: once the first leaves starts to show up, transplantation needs to be done. One must bury these plants deep into the soil while transplanting. Tomato plants have very strong roots and can develop roots throughout their stems. Hence, digging deep into the soil and planting your tomatoes will make them stronger.
Mulch: keep the mulching part delayed. Mulching can prevent the soil from any diseases or harm to the plants and also conserves water. But a little too early of this, can make the soil become cool and will hamper the growth of the plants. Hence, Mulching should only be done once the ground has the chance to heat up first.
Last but not the least, growing tomato from seed needs careful pruning and pinching. Pinch out the growth that develops in the crotch joint of two branches. These are generally termed as suckers that take away the energy from the plant and hamper its growth. A little attention to your tomato gardening will reap you fantastic tomatoes.
If you have not done so this year, next year make sure that you save some seeds from your favorite tomatoes so that you can plant them up and have the same delicious tomatoes again.
Kaye Dennan is an expert on growing tomatoes and shares a lot of information on her website at http://www.growtomatoessuccessfully.com