In the garden: Growing tomatoes
Growing tomatoes is easy with the right weather and a little bit of attention. Here are six key things to remember.
- Tomatoes have a high yield but like any summer vegetable, they need heat and protection from the elements to bear fruit. Planting in December or January is ideal.
- Pot tomato seeds or seedlings with great care, as tomatoes require well-balanced, cultivated soil and constant watering. They can be quite sensitive to insects and weeds, so uprooting any nearby predator is essential to encourage a good harvest.
- Tomatoes need at least six hours of sunlight each day, so potting is a good idea to move tomatoes to the sunniest spots.
- Tomatoes will often grow from your compost in summer. If you find a few plants springing up, transplant them (protecting their roots) to a sheltered area.
- Tomatoes can often be grown from the seeds of tomatoes you eat. Next time you rinse your salad bowl, collect any leftover seeds and leave them in a sunny spot for a fortnight. Once dried out, use them for planting.
- Find out early on if the tomato you are planting grows tall as these tomatoes will need a stake for support. Establish your stake when planting or just after, so as not to damage any root growth in the soil.