Tomatoes

I am trying to plant cherry tomatoes for the first time. I bought littke 8" plants and now have to do something with them. What do I need to do?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I like to put one of these little plants in a 5 gallon bucket and grow it on a sunny patio.
Drill several drainage holes in the bottom of the bucket, fill it with good soil to about 2" from the top, and put up a wire cage to support the vines.
The utility of the bucket comes when you take the opportunity to move it around so your tomatoes get full sunlight all day.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 16 May 2005, Ottawa wrote:

This starts to cut into my thus far un answered tomatillo questions....
I would expect that as a near relative of the tomatillo, factors such as temperature, soil pH and texture, fertilizer (type, amount and timing) are amongst the concerns.
Too little fertilizer ives poor growth, too much gives excessive foliage rather than fruit. I am guessing Ca2+ and phosphate are just as critical as nitrogen, and pH should be close to 7.0.
Dominic
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Dominic, I'm more careful and avoid too much nitrogen fertilizers. I operate on the assumption that most answers are incomplete, so I used mutliple sources of fertilizer. but I was always careful about nitrogen. Which bit me in the behind with corn since it is a grass and a heavy nitrogen feeder. I stress phosphorous most and then potassium over nitrogen and so far I'm having good luck.
I do fertilize fairly heavily. I dug down 18" in the garden, sifted out the rocks, and added a mix of different fertilizers (bloodmeal, bone meal, greensand, superphosphate, alumininum...something, plus humus, composted manure). This was mixed throughout the 18" root zone. I've had fantastic results with everything I plant in those areas I've worked that deep. Last year's Big Beef plant rose bushed out and climbed 10' up. So I kinda feel nitrogen is the really worrisome one.
Tomatoes do suffer from blossom end rot and inability to absorb calcium is a definite contributor. SO calcium is more important on tomatoes that to some others. I add eggshells to my tomatoes beds when I turn them and add some when transplanting. Over time I hope this will compensate for the extra calcium drawn by the tomatoes.
There is a webpage out there that shows tomatoes plants with all different micronutrient deficiencies. Basically you can see the plant gets sickly or dying without manganese, magnesium, iron, sodium, etc. So a nutrient shortage on anything can lead to a sick plant. I think a mistake made with fertilizer is the focus on the big three and not worrying about the many other things the ground might lack.
DiGiTAL ViNYL (no email) Zone 6b/7, Westchester Co, NY, <1 mile off L.I.Sound 3rd year gardener http://photos.yahoo.com/ph/royalfrazier /
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Tue, 17 May 2005, DigitalVinyl wrote:

Thanks for your overall remarks. You have clearly pondered these thoughts in some detail. The general nutrient depletion, especially the Ca2+ and phosphate, makes me wonder what the final pH of the final admix for your hybrid soil?
I note that pH can potently influence Ca2+ and phosphate availabilty. Also, I have been more inclined to having rocks present, maybe as a source of nutrients or at least a mechanical interface roots can draw water and dissolved nutrients from better than the mainly clay soil I presently have. I have questions about which kinds of rocks, but it sounds like limestone is a good choice, and I happen to have access to this.
With regard to nitrogen, what do you think about interspersing nitrogen fixers (beans, peas, etc) in some arrangement together with tomatoes or tomatillos (or any other vegetable for that matter)? It seems nitrogen content of soil would increase as the growing season progresses, which might be favorable for tomatoes.
Dominic-Luc Webb
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I've never tested my soil, but I've had good results --minus a few common disease and bug problems. I should get the ground tested--i do work NEXT DOOOR to the Cornell Cooperative Extension for my county.

pH can interfere with all fucntions of the plant if it swings far enough either way. Clay is a problem. I had to go about 12-15 inches before encountering clay, so I'm lucky. Sounds like you need to establish some large composting bins for the future. Amending the soil with organic humus seems to be one of the cheapest and best ways to condition your soil. Of course for large areas the challenge becomes the volume.
I have very limited areas to grow in --although I'm expanding every year. So each sq ft had to be the best possible, in my mind, for the best crops. about half of my square footage has had all rocks and debris removed and is 100% available for rooting for 12-18". The rest has been turned and mixed for about 6-8 inches--with plenty of rocks and crap(formerly a weedy lawn).

I don't know of a specific need for greater nitrogen in tomatoes more than others, so I don't know if there is a benefit beyond having another contributor to the soil. Of course if you are concerned about the lack of nutrients, then the peas/beans are a little more insurance. Also they don't always fix nitrogen if an innoculant hasn't been used on them--or so I recall. I planted my peas where I will later fill in with corn transplants(heavy nitrogen feeder). Last year I had beans in an area I'm now growing lettuce and spinach. I'm hoping the leafy greens, which I expect need more nitrogen will feel some benefit.

DiGiTAL ViNYL (no email) Zone 6b/7, Westchester Co, NY, <1 mile off L.I.Sound 3rd year gardener http://photos.yahoo.com/ph/royalfrazier /
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.