Grow Gorgeous Tomatoes With These 4 Smart Tips

Tomatoes can be a tricky crop for inexperienced gardeners. While some crops seem to grow easily under almost any circumstances, many varieties of tomatoes seem to require conditions to come together in just the right way, which can be intimidating if you’re unsure of your green thumb. Whether you’ve had tomato trouble in the past, or you just want to get it right the first time, these tips can help you harvest a terrific and tasty tomato crop.

Choose a Variety of Seeds

There are a great number of varieties of tomatoes, and you’ll increase your chances of a healthy crop if you don’t stick with just one. Some varieties will do better in your area than others. Vagaries in the weather may harm some varieties while strengthening others. If you’re trying to establish a tomato crop for the first time, choosing several different varieties increases your chances of ending up with something to show for your efforts. If you’re lucky, you’ll wind up with several tomato flavors to choose from.

Choose Companion Plants Wisely

Research the likely enemies of tomato plants and choose companion plants to combat the threats. For example, if you plant basil underneath the tomatoes, white flies will be attracted to the basil and leave your tomatoes alone. Worried about aphids? Plant garlic along with the tomatoes to ward them off.

Stake Them High

Getting your tomatoes off of the ground helps to protect them from picking up diseases, and it keeps them clean and pretty. What’s more, they’ll be easier to spray, monitor, and harvest when they’re off the ground. The simplest way to support your tomatoes off the ground is with metal stakes from a site likeĀ Just drive the stake into the ground and tie the plant to it.

You can damage the roots if you’re not careful, so install the stakes when you’re transplanting the tomatoes. For best results, use metal stakes that are at least six to eight feet high and two to four feet apart. At the end of the season, just pull them up and put them away.

Prune Judiciously

Do you see non-fruiting branches on your plants? It’s in the best interest of your crop to remove these when you see them. You want the nutrients and energy that your tomato plants are taking in to go toward producing large, juicy fruit. Non-fruiting branches drain off those nutrients. Prune them away and watch your tomatoes blossom.

No one can guarantee that you’ll have a perfect tomato crop. However, following these tips will significantly increase your chances of bringing in tasty tomatoes this season.

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